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XXXchurch Starts a Church in Sin City

Last Updated: April 22, 2015

Luke Gilkerson
Luke Gilkerson

Luke Gilkerson has a BA in Philosophy and Religious Studies and an MA in Religion. He is the author of Coming Clean: Overcoming Lust Through Biblical Accountability and The Talk: 7 Lessons to Introduce Your Child to Biblical Sexuality. Luke and his wife Trisha blog at IntoxicatedOnLife.com

Our brothers at XXXchurch have taken their ministry to the next step. For years Craig Gross, co-founder of XXXchurch, has told people that they are not a literal church, that they are just an online community. But this month, all of that changes.

Introducing: The Strip Church in Las Vegas.

XXXchurch

The ministry of XXXchurch has been on the cutting-edge (and many say too edgy) of helping a world saturated with pornography. This is a ministry not only to those struggling with the temptation to watch porn, but also to the adult industry itself.

  • XXXchurch has attended more than 20 porn shows around the world
  • Their website has become a huge storehouse of information and testimonies for those who have been affected by porn
  • Through programs like Porn Sunday, Porn and Pancakes, and Porn and Pastries, XXXchurch has taken their message to hundreds of churches
  • Craig Gross has toured college campuses around the country with famed porn actor and director Ron Jeremy, debating about the effects of porn

XXXchurch has also been accused of crossing the line by several Christian leaders. Albert Mohler, president of The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, has said,

“I have no doubt that Jesus loves porn stars, and the Bible is perfectly clear in its grace-filled message that Christ came to save sinners. Jesus ate with notorious sinners and engaged in conversation with them. Yet, the presence of a Christian ministry within the confines of the Erotica Expo is a step beyond the example of Jesus, I would argue. There is a difference between talking to a prostitute about the Gospel and entering a brothel—much less buying a booth.”

Visit his blog to hear his full commentary.

The Strip Church Plan

“Bringing the Desert It’s Drink”—that’s the tagline of The Strip Church.

So what’s the plan? Every week many conventions and trade shows take place in Las Vegas, from porn stars to plumbers, and accountants to automotive workers. The Strip Church will set up a booth at each one of these conventions in their show rooms and invite people there to a church service happening close to the convention. At these services attendees will be encouraged make the right choices while in Vegas and learn more about Jesus. After these attendees return home, The Strip Church will give them a call and help them find a church in their area.

In order to pull off these outreaches, The Strip Church is asking for volunteers to take short term mission trips to Vegas, and (of course) for financial donations.

Why a Church in Sin City?

According to Strip Church:

  • Nearly 40 million people visit Las Vegas every year
  • 10,000 prostitutes work in the city
  • Over 189,000 hotel rooms are on the Las Vegas Strip
  • Tourism in Las Vegas takes in $41 billion annually
  • The sex industry in Las Vegas rakes in over 6 billion dollars a year
  • Las Vegas is the fastest growing city in the United States
  • 140 pages of the Las Vegas yellow pages is devoted to Escort Services and “private entertainment”
  • Las Vegas is the epicenter of North American sex trafficking and prostitution

 

Gross’ vision is to follow in the footsteps of Jesus who came not for the healthy but for the sick, not for the righteous but the sinners. He and his small team have packed their bags and moved their families and made Las Vegas their home.

Gross believes the church needs to do a better job telling people about Jesus. Gross doesn’t blame “the dark for being dark” spiritually, or for Vegas being Vegas. He instead blames “the light for not shining on the darkness.”

What do you think?

What do you think about this outreach to Vegas?

  • Comments on: XXXchurch Starts a Church in Sin City
    1. Theresa on

      wow. i don’t think i was aware of the severity of the situation in Vegas. most Christians would cower at the idea of going into a place so aptly named “sin city” (myself included) and these people have moved their families in order to be a light in a desperately dark place.
      it may be “entering a brothel” but maybe that’s the kind of difference people need to experience to wonder “maybe there is more to this “christian” thing”
      that’s what we’re called to do-to be so radically different from the rest of the world that people can’t help but ask “WHY?” and that’s when we talk to them about Jesus.

      Reply
    2. Scott on

      I have been a fan of their ministry (if one can be a fan of a ministry) for years. I think they’re doing good, necessary work and this idea seems sound to me.

      Reply
    3. Jerry on

      I have heard a lot about XXXchurch. While I was a skeptic at first about not just the church, but the problem with porn I now know that their is an issue and it needs to be resolved. We together need to stand up and fight this thing.

      Reply
    4. Nick on

      I am reading a book by Albert Mohller right now called “He is not Silent” so far in the book he talks about teaching the word of God verse by verse, in saying that Jesus taught wherever He went even into the homes of tax collectors. There is a fear among some christian leaders of porn, I say this the fear should not be of porn or even the adult industry, that is what the enemy wants, our fear as christian leaders or even Christian’s should be of our Loving, Holy and Righteous God.

      I thank God that every day that He loved me enough to die for me. Not only did He die for me but as our Savior Jesus Christ said I came to save the sick not the healthy (loose translation)

      Reply
    5. Anderson on

      Wow, this one is kinda tough. I think the idea of going into these venues is one that is backed by very good motives. I think that if it helps bring people out of the grip of pornography, then it is worth it. Being new to knowing about this ministry, I am not sure how they operate..is it made very clear that XXX is opposed to pornography at these events? If that isn’t made clear to every passerby, it would potentially send a mixed message which could be detrimental to others in finding Christ. My biggest concern is whether or not the Christians working inside these venues at these events are havng a stumblingblock in front of them by being surrounded with the pornography. If that is the case, I don’t think the pros outweigh the cons. However, if they can honestly handle it, I think it is great. Our family had a huge problem regarding pornography and I honestly could never go anywhere near it. Just typing this is making my heartrate go through the roof. I think it is great either way that some Christians are actually confronting the issue. If a man thinks he stands let him take heed lest he fall. I’m sure you already know that verse. May God lead and guide your endeavors by The Holy Spirit.

      Reply
    6. Grace on

      Ask the people who question you what they are doing to reach out to these people and if they are actually reaching them.

      Reply
    7. Steven on

      Hello, I have seen your guy’s ministry a while. I have been studying God’s Word regularly for years, and I have one difference in the approach. You try to say that Jesus hung out with prostitutes. While I agree to an extent, my question would be which ones? I believe a brief Bible study in Matthew, Mark, Luke and John would easily show that He hung around those who were repentant ~ and he didn’t offer them a better life, only the message of repentance, faith and obedience. I’m praying that God will show you how to bring your ministry into line with Jesus, our Master’s teachings.

      a servant/life-slave of Jesus,
      Steven

      P.S. Please don’t misunderstand what I’m trying to say. My family and I share the gospel with those in bar scenes in Orlando and other places. I believe there is a right way to do it, but I believe the way you are doing it is wrong, and could very well be producing a bunch of false converts, which is what scares me the most. To know more of what I mean, you are welcome to email me and we can talk more on this, and/or I encourage you to study Matthew 13 for yourself. In Matthew 13, the truth is clearly proclaimed, 3 soils reject the truth, and 3 soils embrace the truth ~ that is my challenge to you: learn Jesus’ message and proclaim it clearly, with no compromise. ~ SH

      Reply
    8. Jones on

      I hope they’ll contact the elders at Providence Orthodox Presbyterian Church in Vegas:
      5920 W Flamingo Rd
      Las Vegas, NV 89103
      702-396-9556

      Reply
    9. Chris on

      I am in Vegas, for a friends wedding, and am a Christian who desire to get a vibe in person for what the XXX Church is like. I found it a challenge to find their address, but will continue to look. Just got in last night and will be here for a few days. :)

      Reply

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