Former NFL player, Kurt Ploeger, has launched a church in Minnesota called NorthLight Community Church.
He told The Christian Post he wanted to start a church after he met with two pastors who were also thinking of planting a church in the Rochester area.
"They had a vision for not just planting a church, but planting churches that would plant other churches, and a process of multiplication," said Ploeger.
"Because of that shared vision, ultimately I interviewed with them, spent time with leaders from the boards of both churches, and that they called me in October of 2016 to come as a church planter."
The pastors’ two churches were Calvary Evangelical Free Church and The Gathering, a church plant of Calvary. The two churches helped raise funds for Ploeger’s NorthLight church.
About 60 people attended the church’s inaugural service.
"A few of those were well-wishers, but most of them were people from the community. Some I know, some I didn't know. And so we're, we're trying to build from there," said Ploeger.
The new church is in the small, but growing town of Byron, where the population has jumped from 1,200 to 5,500 in about 20 years. Still, Ploeger said the city only has four churches and none are evangelical.
The church’s first service was Sunday at a primary school in Byron, Minn.
Ploeger retired from the NFL after playing for the Dallas Cowboys, Buffalo Bills, Green Bay Packers and Minnesota Vikings.
He said that “God used football” to show him Jesus, and as a student, he dedicated his life to Christ after attending a Fellowship of Christian Athletes meetings with Vikings player Wally Hilgenberg.
"When he gave an invitation to respond to Christ, I responded to that call because I realized that I was an all-American football player at the time and I had put a lot of effort into football, but my faith, any belief I had in God, was sort of put on the back shelf, compartmentalized somewhere. And I realized that if I wanted to be serious about this, that it took something more than what I had been giving it."
Photo courtesy: Unsplash/Ben White
Publication date: March 20, 2018
Amanda Casanova is a writer living in Dallas, Texas. She has covered news for ChristianHeadlines.com since 2014. She has also contributed to The Houston Chronicle, U.S. News and World Report and IBelieve.com. She blogs at The Migraine Runner.