Warrenton welcomes Element Church back to Warren County

By Jason Koch, Editor
Posted 3/4/24

Element Church has reopened its campus in Warrenton MO, coming back to Warren County a few years after it had to close because of COVID.

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Warrenton welcomes Element Church back to Warren County


Element Church has returned to Warren County, officially reopening its new campus on Jan. 21.

The church renovated the Warrenton 8 Cinema at 265 W. Veterans Memorial Parkway in Warrenton.

This isn’t the first campus Element Church has had in Warrenton

“So we had actually launched a campus out here in 2019,” Leo Crosby, one of the executive pastors for the church, said. “COVID caused us to launch and close down. And so when we were able to relaunch out here, we were extremely excited about being a part of the community out here.”

The return of Element Church saw more than 700 people come out the first week. Attendance has settled in at somewhere between 300 and 400 people a week, Crosby said, but he’s not focused on the numbers.

“If we’re not careful, the church gets so it’s about numbers and for us, every number is a name,” Crosby said. “God’s going to bring the people he wants in and we’re going to just do what he asks us to do and keep following his lead.”

Instead of focusing on the numbers, Crosby said Element Church wants to focus on the community. 

The Warrenton campus pastor, David Boedeker, emphasized that as well. Boedeker was born in Warrenton and graduated from Warrenton High School.

“I just love being in Warrenton for my family, and my family being part of the community and being in that niche,” Boedeker said. “From the very first time that God called me to ministry, I’ve always wanted to be back home to be able to serve the people that once served me. So that's the biggest reason why I love being back here again. It’s because I’m serving the community that I grew up in and that’s a dream come true.”

The Warrenton campus is the third Element campus in the region. The church also has campuses in Wentzville and St. Charles.

It’s also the newest church in the Warrenton community filled with several houses of God.

“We believe we have the answer for eternity for the world,” Crosby said. “And so if we filled every church, if every seat was full in every church out here, there probably still wouldn't be enough room for those that would be within a 20 minute drive. Current statistics say the average American that attends church once a month is about 30 to 40 percent. And so if we just figure that out, the number of seats that are available on a weekend for a service, we could fill them all every weekend and still have room for more churches.”

And at Element Church, there are plenty of opportunities to expand. 

“We aren’t even fully using this facility,” Crosby said. “We are looking at ways we can make this facility contribute to the community beyond the weekend. We do believe that this location as we head out this way, we felt that it was really going to be able to help support for the years ahead.”

Currently, the church uses one of the old movie theaters as its main auditorium in Warrenton, and a second as an overflow. But Boedeker said the church tries to squeeze as many people as possible into the main auditorium so people here can have the best experience possible.

“I think the biggest need for the community is hope,” Boedeker said. “There’s a lot of brokenness here in the community. … Element Church brings a different flavor that Warrenton, I think, would work and partner with other churches. That would be a very healthy thing for the community.”

The church has already gotten involved in serving the community, both pastors said, including helping at the food bank and serving at school concession stands to give parents a chance to go watch their kids play.

And Crosby said the response from Warrenton has been positive.

“The city has been very gracious working with us,” he said. “The people have responded well. We love our neighbors. A lot of our people, this is home for them. It’s been a great experience for us again. … And the community have just been lovingly open arms to us and we’ve been excited to be a part of it.”

About the author: Jason Koch is the editor of The Warren County Record, and covers local news and government for the newspaper. He has won multiple awards from both the Indiana and Illinois APME and from the Illinois Press Association. He can be reached at 636-456-6397 or at jason@warrencountyrecord.com

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