When people think of a small group Bible study, they might picture friends gathered around a table, sipping coffee and sharing stories. For Pastor Sean Hall of Fountain Parish, a Christian Reformed church plant in Bellingham, Wash., discussing biblical truths also includes weight lifting, gymnastics, and cardio workouts.
Besides serving as a pastor, Hall is a Crossfit™ trainer at CrossfitX, a gym located in Bellingham. Small groups of adults meet together for workouts, and many become tight-knit communities.
So Hall formed a group called the Godwod. (WOD is a Crossfit™ term that stands for Workout of the Day.) The group meets about once a month for an hour and a half for physical workouts that also include devotionals and Christ-centered teaching. “Crossfitters rally around physical health and friendship in communities,” said Hall. “But there is a lack of spiritual health. What is needed to complete a holistic health is spiritual vibrancy in the person of Jesus.”
Jeff Schwab attends Godwod and has appreciated the communal atmosphere. “Coach/pastor Sean creates a unique avenue into well-being with Godwod,” he said. “It has given me the opportunity to connect with people by creating a comfortable environment to share stories, beliefs, thoughts, and questions.”
Many people have joined the group through friendships with Hall or another athlete at the gym. “It’s mostly me just becoming a pastor to folks in the gym and organically inviting them to join our Godwod community to further explore spiritual health,” said Hall.
Travis HoGlin, proprietor of CrossfitX, said, “Godwod has been amazing for us and our members. It’s a safe and comfortable environment for all of us explore our journeys with God together. . . . We love it!”
Fountain Parish church has supported and birthed this new community at CrossfitX.