What is Church?

To most Americans when you think of church you think about a building. The place you go every Sunday to see your friends, to hear the pastor preach, to sing some worship songs. Whatever you think, church is often described as a place. But today, I discovered a new meaning of church.

One with no pastor. No instruments. No building.

Two weeks ago we were out walking the streets and talking to people we saw, and we met a sweet woman named Ann. She invited us into her small house, served us chai (the drink of choice in Kenya) and shared her story with us. She told us about her children, her life in Maai Mahiu and how she made and sold soap to feed and care for her family. But the part that stuck out to the most was when Ann told us that she had been told by a pastor that the Lord was telling her that she was supposed to start a church. In her home.


Ann is just your average Kenyan woman who works hard to feed her children and have enough money to pay for school fees. She doesn’t have much education herself, but when she heard from God, she knew she had to act. To step out and start a church for her neighbors and friends. To reach out to those around her and share the love of Jesus Christ.

Needless to say, although we were surprised, we were excited to help.

This church is in her backyard where she made pews out of long wooden boards and piles of rock. There are chickens and cats running around and there is no roof over our heads. No microphones. No keyboards. No pulpit. But it is a church. A body of believers who can come together to share and learn about the love that God has for us. We sang off-key in both English and Swahili and it was beautiful. There was no production, no time frame, no expectations. Just the desire to worship our God, the author of life, the creator of the universe, in the simplest form.


“For where two or three come together in my name, there am I with them.” – Matthew 18:20

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