Shop Church

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How did Shop Church get it's Name!

In December 2020, Pastor Deb, founder of Whispers of Love, Hope & Joy, led a four-week advent series, culminating on Christmas Eve. At this time there was also two different couples who supported Whispers who had a conversation about starting a church and Pastor Deb Rensink would lead the church. Services began to take place in a machine shed one mile east of Sioux Center.

Renee Wielenga from the Northwest Iowa Review wrote an article about Shop Church. A portion of that article:

With a combine head rest on a lift and a pickup, trailer and work benches as her backdrop, Pastor Deb Rensink of rural Sioux Center welcomed about a dozen people to Whispers of Love, Hope & Joy Shop Church.

“It’s such a unique place to worship,” she said. “The spirit of the Lord does not discriminate on where it goes and who He can touch. I’ve seen that time and again in this work He’s called me to do; it’s His leading that brought out this idea and is guiding what we do.”

“It is a worship space that is nonthreatening, “Rensink said. “In reality, some of the women who come to Shop Church have been injured by a church or churches. It;s now always that the church know they’ve caused injury but they don’t feel safe in a chuch yet they feel safe here and I think it’s because there’s a little messiness in that shop. It’s not so spic and span, that’s our lives.

“It speaks to the reality of our lives that just that shop can have grease of on floor and isn’t spotless, it can still be a place of worship. We. as God’s people. Are the same. We aren’t spotless but we can come together to worship the God who is. I believe thais is a space where heaven and earth meets. That there really truly is something about that shop - there’s a lot of activity that goes in the shop throughout the week but, come Sunday when we worship, the activity that happens in that one space changes. The presence of the Lord is there.”

Up to about 40 people, mostly from Sioux County but some from Plymouth and O’Brien counties as well, have gathered for Shop Church since it began.

Shop Church Today

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On April 18, 2023 Whispers of Love Hope & Joy purchased a new property. After some organizing, cleaning and painting the Worship Center part of the property is now where Shop Church meets every Sunday at 9:30 am for worship.