Why Not here?

Could God change the world through a small town near the wilderness? He’s done it before—at Bethany beyond the Jordan (John 1:28). So why not in the community of Umatilla, Florida? Calvary Chapel of the Lakes has been praying for Jesus to come and rescue many from sin, bondage, and death, just like He did then. God has instructed us to pray BIG for Him to transform lives, and therefore, we believe that our Lord is up to something big here. 


We believe that God is moving in a fresh way today, and we long to be part of it. Do you have a passion to reach the next generation with the gospel? To teach and disciple them in the Word? Are you an out-of-the-box, outreach minded thinker? Perhaps God is calling you to a small church on a big mission!

About Us...

Simply put, we are an unusual congregation. We are a hot mess of servants, seniors, corporate types and Star Wars geeks. Our Sunday attendance averages 75-100. Most of our congregation is over the age of 40. While we are an older congregation, we are in no way a “set in our ways and longing for the old days” Body of Believers. We love trying new and creative outreaches to engage our community with the Love and Gospel of Jesus. We are big on meeting in public spaces and have a weekly Men’s Discipleship group and Women’s prayer group that meet at Starbucks. Here's some of the outreaches that we've done over the last few years:

  • Food pantry (on-going, twice/month), typically serving 150 people (60-65 families) each time
  • Diaper outreach (on-going, weekly), delivering diapers to homes of local families in need
  • Outreach to prostitutes
  • Rainbow People: offering rides for “modern-day hippies” coming to the Ocala National Forest (just north of us) for their annual gathering; while taxiing them, we pray for opportunities to share the gospel
  • City Hall Doughnuts and Prayer (we deliver doughnuts monthly and invite prayer requests)
  • Sunday afternoon worship for special needs families
  • Free Children’s medical clinic

We realize that some of the above outreaches are a bit out there. These are the efforts that we think make God

smile the most. It’s how we roll at CCOTL. The Youth Pastor that we are seeking will roll this way too.

About our Community

Welcome to Central Florida! While most folks hear that and think “DISNEY!” we’d also like to introduce you to Small Town America. Umatilla is a quiet country town in the northern part of Lake County, Florida (so named because of the hundreds of lakes throughout the county). 

While the population of Umatilla (city limits) is about 3,900, the area we serve extends to several towns within a 20 minute drive, totaling upwards of 50,000 people. Of particular note is what’s called The Golden Triangle, which is the three towns of Tavares, Eustis, and Mount Dora. Our church body is made up of residents of all four towns.  

While our community is idyllic at first glance, physical and spiritual needs abound.  Through our Food Pantry and Diaper ministries, we have discovered that much physical need surrounds us.

We have found great spiritual need as well. The idea that "I'm American, so therefore I'm a Christian as well" is prevalent.  Some have been burned by the church and walked away.  Others see no reason to attend church ( ie. Crossfit provides community, so why not do that instead?).  Our community, just like the rest of our country, needs the life giving, chain breaking Gospel of Jesus Christ to come and bring dead people to life!


About our property

Calvary Chapel of the Lakes (CCOTL) sits just off the main road through town on 7 beautiful acres.  Our 39,000 square foot property includes a sanctuary/fellowship hall, educational wing, a house, and a historic chapel.  God graciously allowed us to purchase the property for a ridiculously low price. We are so thankful for all that He has given us!  Our heart is to utilize the property as much as possible and as often as possible for the Kingdom. Currently our property is a functioning Church and Food Pantry, but there’s room for so much more!   Do you have any ideas of ways that we can leverage our facility for the Gospel? A community space? A coffee shop? A soup kitchen? We would love to hear them!

About our Youth

We have 8-10 middle and high school students. The young women focus on reading Scripture during the week, training themselves to consider its meaning and life application before gathering to discuss how God is speaking to them. The young men and their fathers meet weekly for an Apologetics class. Our youth serve in our food pantry, children’s ministry, worship team, and A/V team, and have recently begun their own worship team.

Youth Pastor/ evangelist Opportunity

Are you called to the mission field of youth? Do you have a passion to reach the next generation with the Gospel's hope and message? To teach and disciple them in the Word? Let’s talk! We don’t want to tell you how to do your job, we want to run with you as you’re doing it. We seek a youth pastor who will join us in getting "out of the palace,” as Pastor Doug said in his sermons from Esther 4 and 5

This new position will be bi-vocational. 

We’ll provide $1,000 per month salary (Florida has no state income taxes) plus free housing in the 3BR, 2BA parsonage (pictured) next to the church.  (It's not fancy, but did we say 'free'?) This will include electricity and water.

So, what do you think?

Are you interested? 

Here's a Job Description you can print.

And here's a printed, more detailed version of this Interest Inquiry.

Email your resume and any questions to ccotlyouth@gmail.com.

We would love to tell you more about the role and our vision.