Anchor ads are not supported on this page.

4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs

The Gathering Place Church

Pastor John Ettore crouched down by my seat to welcome me, his hand heavy upon my shoulder, granite intensity in his face as he told me about Alan Vincent, an Englishman-turned-American and the guest preacher for the day. “In 1958, the Lord revealed Himself to him — he was a convinced evolutionist, an atheistic scientist working for the Kodak corporation. He became a missionary to India and has had incredible miracles happen through him — incurable diseases healed, that kind of stuff. You look in the Bible, and you see the Apostle Paul — real apostles, they are people who operate in the miraculous, but who have also suffered a lot. A lot of his disciples have been murdered or imprisoned or tortured, but hundreds of thousands of Hindus have come to Christ because of his ministry. He’s like an icon to them.”

Before Vincent spoke, there was music — anthemic and laden with repetition (“Have Your glory, Lord/ Have Your glory, Lord), sometimes resembling a military march, sometimes a love ballad (“Romancing, pursuing, reclaiming to restore...”). Hands were lifted, eyes were closed, and there was a sense of deep emotion burbling up in the murmured praises from the (generally youthful) congregation. (“Oh, God, You’re so good. You’re so awesome.”) A father wrapped his arm around his shaggy son’s shoulders.

“What is a gathering of God’s people without the presence of the Lord?” asked Ettore. “Nothing. One time, God said to Moses, ‘You go up and take that city, but I’m not going up there.’ And Moses said, ‘I don’t think so. I don’t care about the victory. If You’re not going, I’m not going. It’s me being with You and You being with me.’” He encouraged the congregation to enter into God’s presence, “to climb on His lap and call Him ‘Daddy.’ That’s the word Jesus used — ‘Abba.’ It was an intimate, wonderful love affair, and that’s what we want to have here at the Gathering Place Church.... God just wants to be loved.... Just lift your hands; He’s not mad at you.... Us loving God back; that is the love affair that some call Christianity. It’s not a religion; it’s a relationship.”

A pair of crutches leaned against the cross mounted high on the stage. “One of the ways God shows His love is through His healing power,” continued Ettore. He called a man forward to tell the story of Tina. “Tina has come up many times, asking prayer for her sciatica — it’s just constantly inflamed, and she’s been in so much pain. Last night, Alan was talking about putting yourself in a posture of receiving. She said, ‘I’m going to go up one more time and give God the chance to touch me.’ God miraculously healed her, and the pain left.” Huge applause and cheering. “And what I think is so great — she was out in the parking lot sharing it with someone else who was hurting with her sciatica, and Tina prayed for her, and God healed her.”

That image — receiving some divine action and then passing it on in love — served nicely to introduce Vincent’s sermon. He preached on making the Kingdom come, on the Christian call to possess Christ’s inheritance. The enemies of the Kingdom were the demons who had once held dominion, and it was amazing to hear this erudite man speak plainly of witnessing angels come against the Dalai Lama’s influence in Austria, of a woman possessed by Kali but unable to do him harm. Pants hoisted, shirtsleeves too short, the aged face on the leonine head barely changing expression as he roamed and expounded and exhorted, Vincent slipped smoothly from historical context to etymology to exegesis.

Sponsored
Sponsored

He closed with a meditation on the bread of heaven. First, he noted that the disciples had been made to participate in the miracle of the loaves, passing on the miraculous bread to the hungry multitudes. Then he asked whether those in attendance wanted to be “manna Christians” — surviving on the comparatively meager graces of met personal needs, hiding from the world in a “Kingdom bubble” — or warrior Christians, who eat Christ’s body and drink His blood so as to “have abundance to give away to each and every person we meet.”

Came the reply: “We are ready to be the sacrifice You need!”

“Come back tonight, and bring friends,” concluded Ettore. “What you just heard will open up, and there’s going to be an impartation. Jesus taught His disciples about the Kingdom, and then one day He laid hands on them and gave them power and authority over demons and all manner of sickness and disease...and He commissioned them. That’s going to be what happens tonight.”

What happens when we die?

“Oh, we go to heaven or we go to hell,” said Ettore.

Place

Gathering Place Church

Lexus Center 1205 Auto Park Way, Escondido




Denomination: nondenominational
Founded locally: 1998
Senior pastor: John Ettore
Congregation size: 200
Staff size: 7
Sunday school enrollment: 50
Annual budget: n/a
Weekly giving: about $10,000
Singles program: yes
Dress: mostly casual, some semiformal
Diversity: mostly Caucasian
Sunday worship: 10 a.m.
Length of reviewed service: 1 hour, 45 minutes
Website: gatheringplacechurch.org

Here's something you might be interested in.
Submit a free classified
or view all
Previous article

Toyota Priuses driven by Chinese men near Mexican border

Legal immigrants say illegal taxis operating on Iris Avenue

Pastor John Ettore crouched down by my seat to welcome me, his hand heavy upon my shoulder, granite intensity in his face as he told me about Alan Vincent, an Englishman-turned-American and the guest preacher for the day. “In 1958, the Lord revealed Himself to him — he was a convinced evolutionist, an atheistic scientist working for the Kodak corporation. He became a missionary to India and has had incredible miracles happen through him — incurable diseases healed, that kind of stuff. You look in the Bible, and you see the Apostle Paul — real apostles, they are people who operate in the miraculous, but who have also suffered a lot. A lot of his disciples have been murdered or imprisoned or tortured, but hundreds of thousands of Hindus have come to Christ because of his ministry. He’s like an icon to them.”

Before Vincent spoke, there was music — anthemic and laden with repetition (“Have Your glory, Lord/ Have Your glory, Lord), sometimes resembling a military march, sometimes a love ballad (“Romancing, pursuing, reclaiming to restore...”). Hands were lifted, eyes were closed, and there was a sense of deep emotion burbling up in the murmured praises from the (generally youthful) congregation. (“Oh, God, You’re so good. You’re so awesome.”) A father wrapped his arm around his shaggy son’s shoulders.

“What is a gathering of God’s people without the presence of the Lord?” asked Ettore. “Nothing. One time, God said to Moses, ‘You go up and take that city, but I’m not going up there.’ And Moses said, ‘I don’t think so. I don’t care about the victory. If You’re not going, I’m not going. It’s me being with You and You being with me.’” He encouraged the congregation to enter into God’s presence, “to climb on His lap and call Him ‘Daddy.’ That’s the word Jesus used — ‘Abba.’ It was an intimate, wonderful love affair, and that’s what we want to have here at the Gathering Place Church.... God just wants to be loved.... Just lift your hands; He’s not mad at you.... Us loving God back; that is the love affair that some call Christianity. It’s not a religion; it’s a relationship.”

A pair of crutches leaned against the cross mounted high on the stage. “One of the ways God shows His love is through His healing power,” continued Ettore. He called a man forward to tell the story of Tina. “Tina has come up many times, asking prayer for her sciatica — it’s just constantly inflamed, and she’s been in so much pain. Last night, Alan was talking about putting yourself in a posture of receiving. She said, ‘I’m going to go up one more time and give God the chance to touch me.’ God miraculously healed her, and the pain left.” Huge applause and cheering. “And what I think is so great — she was out in the parking lot sharing it with someone else who was hurting with her sciatica, and Tina prayed for her, and God healed her.”

That image — receiving some divine action and then passing it on in love — served nicely to introduce Vincent’s sermon. He preached on making the Kingdom come, on the Christian call to possess Christ’s inheritance. The enemies of the Kingdom were the demons who had once held dominion, and it was amazing to hear this erudite man speak plainly of witnessing angels come against the Dalai Lama’s influence in Austria, of a woman possessed by Kali but unable to do him harm. Pants hoisted, shirtsleeves too short, the aged face on the leonine head barely changing expression as he roamed and expounded and exhorted, Vincent slipped smoothly from historical context to etymology to exegesis.

Sponsored
Sponsored

He closed with a meditation on the bread of heaven. First, he noted that the disciples had been made to participate in the miracle of the loaves, passing on the miraculous bread to the hungry multitudes. Then he asked whether those in attendance wanted to be “manna Christians” — surviving on the comparatively meager graces of met personal needs, hiding from the world in a “Kingdom bubble” — or warrior Christians, who eat Christ’s body and drink His blood so as to “have abundance to give away to each and every person we meet.”

Came the reply: “We are ready to be the sacrifice You need!”

“Come back tonight, and bring friends,” concluded Ettore. “What you just heard will open up, and there’s going to be an impartation. Jesus taught His disciples about the Kingdom, and then one day He laid hands on them and gave them power and authority over demons and all manner of sickness and disease...and He commissioned them. That’s going to be what happens tonight.”

What happens when we die?

“Oh, we go to heaven or we go to hell,” said Ettore.

Place

Gathering Place Church

Lexus Center 1205 Auto Park Way, Escondido




Denomination: nondenominational
Founded locally: 1998
Senior pastor: John Ettore
Congregation size: 200
Staff size: 7
Sunday school enrollment: 50
Annual budget: n/a
Weekly giving: about $10,000
Singles program: yes
Dress: mostly casual, some semiformal
Diversity: mostly Caucasian
Sunday worship: 10 a.m.
Length of reviewed service: 1 hour, 45 minutes
Website: gatheringplacechurch.org

Comments
Sponsored
Here's something you might be interested in.
Submit a free classified
or view all
Previous article

Hullabaloo, Stick Figure, Beat Farmers Hootenanny, Josh Weinstein, Adam Wolff

Jazz, pop, reggae, and reunions in Encinitas, downtown, Solana Beach, Little Italy, Coronado
Next Article

Front-yard chalkboard charms OB passersby

Questions asked, stories told, neighborhood celebrated
Comments
Ask a Hipster — Advice you didn't know you needed Big Screen — Movie commentary Blurt — Music's inside track Booze News — San Diego spirits Classical Music — Immortal beauty Classifieds — Free and easy Cover Stories — Front-page features Drinks All Around — Bartenders' drink recipes Excerpts — Literary and spiritual excerpts Feast! — Food & drink reviews Feature Stories — Local news & stories Fishing Report — What’s getting hooked from ship and shore From the Archives — Spotlight on the past Golden Dreams — Talk of the town The Gonzo Report — Making the musical scene, or at least reporting from it Letters — Our inbox Movies@Home — Local movie buffs share favorites Movie Reviews — Our critics' picks and pans Musician Interviews — Up close with local artists Neighborhood News from Stringers — Hyperlocal news News Ticker — News & politics Obermeyer — San Diego politics illustrated Outdoors — Weekly changes in flora and fauna Overheard in San Diego — Eavesdropping illustrated Poetry — The old and the new Reader Travel — Travel section built by travelers Reading — The hunt for intellectuals Roam-O-Rama — SoCal's best hiking/biking trails San Diego Beer — Inside San Diego suds SD on the QT — Almost factual news Sheep and Goats — Places of worship Special Issues — The best of Street Style — San Diego streets have style Surf Diego — Real stories from those braving the waves Theater — On stage in San Diego this week Tin Fork — Silver spoon alternative Under the Radar — Matt Potter's undercover work Unforgettable — Long-ago San Diego Unreal Estate — San Diego's priciest pads Your Week — Daily event picks
4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
Close

Anchor ads are not supported on this page.