The Register-Herald, Beckley, West Virginia


February 4, 2012

Fayette church deliberately avoids owning building

A new church “looking to do things differently” has been assembling in Fayette County.

The Outpouring Church holds Sunday services at the Fayetteville High School auditorium and Wednesday services at the Church of God of Prophecy in Oak Hill.

Don Browning Jr. is the pastor at the church and his sister, Shannon Aubill, says they are not looking for a permanent location to hold their services.

“We’re trying to think outside of the box. We’re looking to do church differently,” Aubill said. “We’re trying to make church more of a verb than a noun.”

She says instead of using funds to rent or build a church location, they are using that money for outreach into the community.

The church has participated in a coat drive with Winter Haven and sent care packages for Veteran’s Day, and they are also raising money for families in Africa.

“Change the World” is a program through which kids bring their spare change to church on Sunday. For every $100 raised, a goat and two chickens will be purchased for a family in Africa, which Aubill says will greatly change their life.

Their first official Sunday service was Sept. 11, 2011.

“We really want to be a church and a place where everyone feels welcome,” Aubill said. “We’re ready to become a part of a fresh outpouring of God’s love.”

When they were younger, both Aubill and Browning lived in West Virginia and traveled throughout the state with their father, who was an evangelist. In 1987, the family moved to Michigan, but Aubill says she and her brother always had a heart to be back in West Virginia, which they consider home.

Aubill moved back in 2007 and Browning in 2010, with the intent of starting the church.

When Browning suggested that they hold Sunday services at 10:08 a.m., “I thought it was because he knew I was always late,” Aubill said. But the reason behind the unusual service time is the Bible passage Mat-thew 10:08. Aubill says this passage is where Jesus commissioned the disciples to go out and he said, “Freely you have received; freely give.”

Once a month, Browning teaches a special Sunday night service. Next week, he will begin a series about “How to Hear the Voice of God.” Aubill says this service will show how to hear God’s voice through not only the written word, but through pastors, friends and even dreams.

During Wednesday “refill services” at the Church of God of Prophecy in Oak Hill, everyone brings a dish at 5:30 p.m. for a potluck dinner. Around 7 p.m., church service begins.

Aubill says the church has no dress code, everyone is welcome to attend, and the church is nondenominational.

“We leave the judging to God. We say we’ll catch ’em and God will clean ’em,” Aubill said. “We believe that love is the great equalizer.”

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— E-mail: wholdren@

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