SOUTH OGDEN -- Bobby Wood was two years into an engineering degree when he changed the course of his career.
Wood spent a summer in Burley, Idaho, during college and says he realized his career needed to be centered more around God, so he switched majors. After earning a bachelor of arts degree from the University of South Carolina, he went on to earn a master of divinity degree at New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary. Today, he is the lead pastor at Redemption Church in South Ogden.
"I felt like God was calling me to seek a different route in life," he said.
"I came to Utah to serve as youth pastor for Mountain View Baptist Church in Layton, and my wife and I decided to start this new church."
At the end of 2011, Wood and his wife, Lindsay, started a ministry at Weber State University, where they shared their gospel message with students each week. In September this year, they found their home inside Ziegfeld's Theater, 3934 Washington Blvd., where more than 55 people meet for a worship service at 10:30 a.m. each Sunday.
"Our services center around the message of Jesus Christ," Wood said. "We invite people of any background to come and hear the message and connect with God. We are very laid-back, so you can come as you are -- and we're pretty contemporary. We have a band that plays as well."
The church runs independent of the Baptist Church. However, Wood said a portion of its offerings goes to the Southern Baptist Church for missionaries overseas, as well as toward helping others attend pastoral school. Jason Sanders also serves as the college pastor at the church. The message of the church, Wood said, is of eternal life and the atonement of Jesus Christ. More information about the church can be found at www.redemptionutah.com.
On Sunday, Dec. 15, at 6 p.m., the church is offering the public a free video, "A Nativity Story." Popcorn and soda will be served.
"We hope to one day see hundreds of churches started in Utah, starting in Ogden and throughout the Salt Lake metropolitan area," Wood said. "We want to invite everyone to come out to church and to also come and watch the movie, get to know one another and enjoy each others' company."