|Canyon Ridge Christian Church draws thousands every week with its come-as-you-are calling.
Canyon Ridge Christian Church is situated in the northwest Las Vegas Valley. A “come-as-you-are” house of worship founded nearly two decades ago by the husband and wife team of Kevin and Ginger Odor (they moved to Las Vegas from Ohio with their three young children to begin Canyon Ridge in the YMCA in Central Las Vegas) , CRCC welcomed former National Football League player and Coach Dan Reeves March 19-20.
Reeves has been involved in nine Super Bowls both as a coach and player in storied career that has included stops in Dallas, Denver, New York and Atlanta. A former farm boy from Georgia, Reeves has enjoyed the great times and the glory of the NFL and suffered through the losses of games and the setbacks related to being fired.
Throw in the fact that he’s had both knees replaced and you can see that the man has definitely paid the price for his dedication to the rough and tumble world of professional football.
The personable Reeves told his story through Canyon Ridge Pastor Odor in a touching interview that captivated four services during the weekend. He told of meeting his wife of 47 years while in high school (she was a cheerleader) before playing at the University of South Carolina.
His playing career in the NFL included his days under legendary Dallas Cowboys Coach Tom Landry where he played in two Super Bowls before coaching in four Super Bowls with teams including the Denver Broncos and Atlanta Falcons.
Soft spoken and convincing in his delivery, Reeves explained faith was his biggest strength when dealing with the setbacks in life. He laughed about being drug to church by his parents when he was a youngster in Rome, Ga., while also explaining how important church had been in his life.
Dealing with the highs and lows of the NFL is somewhat similar to the boom and bust of the Las Vegas economy. We’re all faced with one challenge or another whether it be as a coach in the NFL or a citizen of Southern Nevada, so the key is dealing with the positives and negatives without going to an extreme in either case.
Losing your job has the same affect whether it’s while working as a construction worker or a head coach of a professional football team. The key in either case is how you handle the setback and in Reeves’s case, it’s obvious that a strong faith helps provide an answer or hope when your world is caving in around you.
Landing someone as noteworthy as Dan Reeves illustrates Canyon Ridge’s continued quest to attract people to its church. The creative minds behind CRCC are constantly producing one fascinating series after another while landing special guests such as Reeves at the same time.
Canyon Ridge is not a church with cookie cutter presentations. Every service is different delivering a message that is clear and concise while creating a home-away-from-home for the 6,000 who attend four services each week. Its lively music is so bubbly and invigorating that some employees at NBC television affiliate KSNV once referred to it as “the rock and roll church.”
CRCC’s messages are easy to understand whether the topic is the Bible, basic survival as it relates to living in Las Vegas; or someone as important as Dan Reeves. The church was built like a theater with raised seats so you can see and features a sound system that can be heard throughout.
Add in what is referred to as “Base Camp” for the kids and CRCC is a complete package with an invaluable impact and following. Even during the worst economy in the history of Nevada, the finances are fine as evidenced by the figures that are printed in each week’s bulletin.In short, those attending Canyon Ridge like what they’re seeing and hearing and they appreciate everything from shaking hands to open each service to the weekly messages. For a little more than one hour a week, Canyon Ridge provides sanity and hope in a world jarred by tragedy and war.
In the background are several dedicated souls at Canyon Ridge whose think tanks are being challenged on a daily basis to make sure its followers understand the messages and the meaning behind them.
Perhaps the greatest stamp of approval for Canyon Ridge came a couple of years ago when each of our three sons was in town for the holidays. None of them were overly enthused about attending church when they were younger, so it was enlightening to have the entire family attend a service at CRCC, which is situated at Jones Boulevard and Lone Mountain Road.
After walking out the door of a Christmas Eve service, our middle son, Joe, tapped me on the shoulder.
“Dad, if we had gone to a church like Canyon Ridge when I was younger, I would have gone, too.”
I immediately emailed Pastor Odor to tell him both he and Canyon Ridge had just received the ultimate stamp of approval. Joe and his family now attend a church like Canyon Ridge in Reno.
In addition, my wife of 39 years, Carmen, had occasionally attended another church in past years. When I started attending Canyon Ridge, she chose not to attend before deciding to check out my new-found home.
Two years later, Carmen can’t wait to get to Canyon Ridge each weekend, too. Whereas church used to be a real challenge, that’s certainly not the case anymore as it relates to Canyon Ridge where the philosophy of “come-as-you-are” is attracting thousands every week.