Unity is theme of 24-hour worship service
March 10, 2023
Bruce Matuszak recalled the vacation stop in Wichita, Kansas, where he hatched the idea of conducting a daylong worship service.
After some Bible reading and prayer in the morning, he was moved by a thought.
"I had to do something," he said. He turned to his wife, Tami Matuszak, and said, "'We're going to organize a 24-hour worship service.'"
Matuszak is a board member of Cloquet-based Kingdom Builders Ministries, and the event organizer of "24 hours of worship" beginning at 5 p.m. March 17 and concluding at 5 p.m. March 18 at Common Ground Coffee Bar & Deli in the city's historic West End.
Kingdom Builders is the ministry behind the Wood City Music Festival every summer. It's been a local leader in worship innovation by doing things such as taking multiple congregations and rotating through different churches for services together.
"We're all the church," Matuszak said. "And that's why we like to do things together in unity."
"Our ministry really believes it's better if churches are working together than fighting each other," board member Lee Harris added. "We push unity."
Fittingly, 24 hours of worship will begin with pastors from three other churches joining together to kick off a full day of music-filled worship. Hollis Graves of Journey Christian Church, Mike Stevens from Good Hope Church, and Ted Youker at Grace Church are the pastors teaming up.
"They're going to play music as a pastoral team," Matuszak said. "It kind of shows the inspiration of the unity of the churches in the community."
From there, worship leaders from across the area will all take over at various times throughout the night and into the next day. Doors will remain open, with worship taking place upstairs from the coffee bar. Guests can come and go as they please.
"Music will be playing the whole time from different worship leaders from the area," Matuszak said. "We're trying to seek God and grow closer to him and worship music is something that helps you get into that state."
Refreshments will be provided, including coffee, in the worship area.
Kingdom Builders has been conducting its 24 hours of worship services since before the pandemic.
"The last one was well-received, but it depends on what time of year we do them," Matuszak said. "We try to do every one every three to four months."
Worship bands from River of Life Church and the Duluth Gospel Tabernacle will be among the worship bands filling the hours with music.
"I'm going to worship, pray and spend time in the presence of God," Harris said. "That's what is the greatest joy for me."
Matuszak expects he'll be at the event the entire time, outside of one errand he may have to run.
"It's a great event," Matuszak said. "We wish we could do it more. Our whole prayer would be that the building is open 24 hours a day for worship."