August 29th, 2011
01:59 PM ET

Texas pastor opens drive-in church

A pastor outside Dallas has launched a drive-in church that operates along the same lines as a drive-in movie theater: Congregants stay in their vehicles and tune in to the sermon on their car radios.

Sanctuary Under the Sky, which meets in a high school parking lot in Lucas, Texas, is the third outdoor church launched by Pastor David Ray, according to CNN Dallas/Fort Worth affiliate WFAA.

Ray, a Presbyterian, told WFAA that he's trying to reach the unchurched and that he believes Jesus would approve of his approach.

"I think he would like it. His stuff was outdoors," Ray said. "A lot of trouble he had was indoors."

One congregant who attended the service on Sunday told WFAA that she's not a fan of mega-churches, preferring to worship alone.

- CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

Filed under: Church • Pastors • Texas • Uncategorized

soundoff (38 Responses)
  1. owlafaye

    This trivializes church...and this is good. He should open more of these.

    August 31, 2011 at 6:59 am |
  2. CSX

    Wicked....wicked.......that is not what the body of Christ should do.

    The problem is the church adjusts to make sinners comfortable.

    August 30, 2011 at 11:29 pm |
  3. Homer


    August 30, 2011 at 9:28 pm |
  4. John Stefanyszyn

    Drive through "Christianity".....

    Hosea 11:7...though they call to the Most High, none at all exalt Him

    August 30, 2011 at 3:34 pm |
  5. derp

    I'd like to pull up to this service and start blasting some satanic death metal music on my car stereo.

    August 30, 2011 at 12:03 pm |
  6. EnergyBeing3

    THESE PEOPLE ARE LUNATICS! So sit in your car, running, creating pollution with the AC blasting while someone spews lies from an outdated book of grossly exaggerated stories. WOW! Hey, I've got some snake oil and magic beans to sell, step right up! The magic beans will give you VIP access to the exclusive CLUB IN THE SKY after you kick the bucket. Can we prove any of this? Nope, but I just so happen to have a book of odd outdated grammar that has lots of poetry to back up my outlandish claims. So that makes it real. HURRY while LIES, er, ah, I mean SUPPLIES last.

    August 30, 2011 at 10:25 am |
    • NoMoreBeans

      Thank everything good in this world that you're not a comedian. That bean joke got old after the first 200 times you said it. But please, go on. It makes you look like a bona fide genius.

      August 30, 2011 at 11:44 am |
    • EnergyBeing3


      C'mon man, that snake oil and those magic beans are HOT SELLERS ( my point is that people will buy or believe anything if you can hype it and create a sensationalism around it while getting their emotions involved. )

      August 30, 2011 at 12:40 pm |
  7. Martin T

    I'll take a hamburger, fries, and a bottle of holy water, please...

    August 30, 2011 at 8:04 am |
  8. Peace2All

    From the Article:

    " Ray, a Presbyterian, told WFAA that he's trying to reach the unchurched and that he believes Jesus would approve of his approach.

    "I think he would like it. His stuff was outdoors," Ray said. "A lot of trouble he (Jesus) had was indoors."

    Hmmm... I'm not so sure that Jesus would agree, I mean that whole "Crucifixion" deal was 'outdoors.'


    August 30, 2011 at 12:55 am |
    • EnergyBeing3

      Ya know, I just don't get into the true Christian mood unless I can see a DEAD CORPSE NAILED TO TWO BOARDS. I feel so much closer to the mythical Jesus character when I can see torture devices such as the crucifix. MAN ALIVE does that ever give me all kinds of warm fuzzies.

      August 30, 2011 at 10:31 am |
    • Peace2All


      LOL...!!! Ya know, -EnergyBeing... I'm with ya' on that. I've never quite understood the need to wear the 'torture devices' around one's neck either...?



      August 30, 2011 at 1:32 pm |
  9. JF

    No need to dress up. The comfy seat with the recline option is nice for the dry or long winded sermon. Don't forget the snacks.

    August 29, 2011 at 8:51 pm |
  10. The Jimster

    how low have these people sunk...? best wishes to those who seek purpose in this spiritual being of yours...seriously.

    August 29, 2011 at 7:06 pm |
    • EnergyBeing3

      Um... not sure if you noticed but there wasn't exactly a FULL PARKING LOT there. But I love how they show the old lady walking up to the cars with her MONEY PLATE. I've got a great imagination, I can also make up stories, grossly exaggerated, about the Universe and how people should behave (because most people don't understand the basics of respect, kindness or compassion, these are extremely difficult concepts), then they can give me money. COOL!

      August 30, 2011 at 10:37 am |
  11. CrystalRiver

    Lazy Americans. Such practice is not honoring God, not fellowshiping and bad to brains. Obesity will get worse.

    August 29, 2011 at 6:27 pm |
    • Anti Christian Taliban Schizophrenics

      I have to agree with Adelina though...American christians are simply pathetic.

      August 29, 2011 at 6:30 pm |
    • CrystalRiver

      Anti-, no, American Christians are the best. We need to fight against our own laziness.

      August 30, 2011 at 2:05 am |
  12. sheetiron

    Oh..... wow.

    "She is turned off by mega churches and group settings. She prefers a more 'intimate' setting"

    Your in you FREAKING car!!!!!!! Theres NOTHING intimate about this. This is just another example of Christians turning church into a show, an entertainment center, attraction center.

    August 29, 2011 at 4:03 pm |
    • EnergyBeing3

      There are PLENTY forms of Brainwashing and Entertainment to get those false warm fuzzies. This is just another one.

      August 30, 2011 at 10:16 am |
  13. Bo

    ========LAUGH====================== Laugh if you wish, but Robert Shuller was able to build the Crystal Cathedral right down the street. Maybe you could build The Crystal Dome MaDondal's. ==============================

    August 29, 2011 at 3:59 pm |
    • EvolvedDNA

      Bo yes, but Shuller most likely got a huge tax advantage over Macky Dees...mind you if we make Ronald Mc a supernatural visitor perhaps....

      August 29, 2011 at 8:21 pm |
  14. Bo

    ==========@CJ========================= yes, this is the way Robert got started , Orange Grove Drive-in. accross the street from the Orange County Hospital where my daughter was born–remember it well. Never went to either the movies or the church.

    August 29, 2011 at 3:46 pm |
  15. Doc Vestibule

    It's nice that someone is offering the option to hear the Bible's message without having to interact with all of those other Christians.
    I've always thought that church would be great if it weren't for all the believers.

    August 29, 2011 at 3:08 pm |
  16. mylifemyway

    They may as well stay home to worship... Lazy sheeple.

    August 29, 2011 at 2:58 pm |
    • That's the way it is

      Whenever you see a post that includes the words "sheeple" or "WAKE UP!", or has -tard added to the group the poster has villified for everything, then you know you are dealing with a complete moron, and you don't have to read any further.

      August 29, 2011 at 3:04 pm |
    • owlafaye

      Do you know some better descriptive terms for Christians other than retards, sheeple and morons? If there was anything to your religion most everyone would be a Christian, but there isn't anything to your beliefs and most people aren't Ohhhhh you want to offer some statistics eh? Your Christian organizations drive around gathering stats and filling out forms, asking questions and polling the people...nothing biased about these results eh? Fact is, atheism has a firm grip in America and good decent people are beginning to speak up. There is no such thing as a good, decent moral Christian son...he purportedly died on the cross (torture device).

      August 31, 2011 at 7:08 am |
  17. C.J.

    Isn't this how Robert Schuller started?

    August 29, 2011 at 2:46 pm |
  18. David Johnson

    I suggest a Christ like clown at the entrance! Call the whole thing McJesus!

    For only 39 cents more, you can super size your born again experience!



    August 29, 2011 at 2:30 pm |
  19. J.W

    I am not sure if I like this idea. Now teenagers will come to church just to make out.

    August 29, 2011 at 2:22 pm |
    • DamianKnight

      And then they'll claim the Holy Spirit is rocking the vehicle.

      August 29, 2011 at 2:27 pm |
    • fast food has taken over

      Two ways to answer this one....
      1) And that would be different... how? (You must have gone to the wrong church!)
      2) Sounds like a church I wish I went to!

      August 29, 2011 at 2:28 pm |
    • Holy Squirrels, Batman!

      Okay, only a Christian boy would be dumb enough to bring a girl to church services expecting to make out. Not exactly the right environment to get them in the mood.

      August 29, 2011 at 2:56 pm |
  20. DamianKnight

    When I read the headline I was totally imagining someone driving up to a speaker and saying, "Yes...ummm...I'd like some Corinthians...and...uhhhh...can I get Ezra super-sized?"

    And the speaker responding in a warbling, indistinct voice, "Would you like some Psalms with that?"

    August 29, 2011 at 2:13 pm |
    • fast food has taken over

      Haha yeah I think that would be a Drive- THROUGH church :P. Admittedly I made the same mistake though... hence the screen name.

      August 29, 2011 at 2:19 pm |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.