Restore Community Church began life as Vineyard Church (Loughton) and was started in 1985 by a small group of local Christians hungry to see God move in a new way in the local community. Wes and Mary Sutton joined the church in 1988 and led it from 1989 until 2007, during which time there was steady growth both in terms of numbers and in community-based work. Ian and Christine King joined Vineyard in 2001, and worked alongside Wes and Mary until they moved on at the beginning of 2007, at which point they took over leading the church.
A New Name
Although the church was called Vineyard and had much in common with the Vineyard church movement, it was never part of this network. Following a number of prophetic words about God wanting to give us a new name and change our DNA, we went through a process of renaming and in June 2010 became Restore Community Church. The name comes from Isaiah 61:4, which says, “They will rebuild the ancient ruins and restore the places long devastated” – which sums up our passion to see communities transformed through the power of Jesus.
In January of 2013, Restore Community Church merged with another local church, Doxa Deo Loughton, following a number of prophetic words (including Ezekiel 37: 15-28, where two sticks are joined as a sign of Israel and Judah uniting as one) and a clear sense that partnering together would enable us to be more effective in our vision of reaching the local community. The joining together of the two churches has created a new depth and strength to church life, and has also precipitated many new openings to impact the community.
A Multiplying Vision
In 2014, the Enfield Congregation was planted to support a number of people who lived in Enfield and had been travelling each week to Loughton. Also this year a partnership started to develop with the Loughton Methodist circuit which led to the beginning of the Restore congregation at Trinity Church. Our main gathering in Loughton continued to grow push infrastructure which lead to us starting a second service at Davenant School.
We are excited about the next stage of our journey together as Restore Community Church.