Plano mega-church returns to North Dallas

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by SHON GABLES

WFAA

Posted on August 21, 2011 at 5:46 PM

Updated Tuesday, Aug 23 at 3:38 AM

DALLAS — Prestonwood Baptist Church returned to Dallas on Sunday.

After 12 years of virtually no physical presence in the city of Dallas, the ministry led by Dr. Jack Graham made its triumphant return.

"Six months ago, we had no clue this was going to happen," Graham said.

In 1999, Prestonwood's congregation was uprooted from its original location at Hillcrest and Arapaho roads and relocated 30 miles north to Plano.

Nine years later, the church expanded and built a second campus in Prosper.

But its newest and third location — a mere three-and-a-half miles from where its first Dallas campus stood — opened its doors for the first time on Sunday.

Dr. Graham said building one church in three locations is a dream come true, and a strategy to cover North Texas with a message of the gospel.

"There are one million people who live in a 10-mile radius of where we are right now at Hillcrest and Willow," he said. "There are many people that don't go to church... many people who are looking for a spiritual home... and so we want to be here to provide a ministry to them."

Caroline Lewis, who lives in Dallas, says she can now finally make it to church on time.

"I used to go to the Plano one so I was still at Prestonwood, but now it's the same thing, different location," she said. ""The new location is fantastic. It has finally arrived in Dallas, we couldn't be happier!"

Thanks to technology, Dr. Graham will be able to preach at all three locations at the same time. His sermons will be simulcast on big screens in the Prosper and Dallas locations whenever he preaches from the church's main location in Plano.

E-mail sgables@wfaa.com

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