Why the name Surprise?

Our name comes from a story Jesus tells in Luke 15 about a lost young man who doesn’t expect to be welcomed home. When he returns, his father runs to embrace him and throws him a surprise party.
That’s the kind of community we want to be.

Our Mission

We seek to be the Surprise of God to a world in need by building a family of servant missionaries. Missionaries aren’t “spiritual superheroes” sent across the world. They are normal people like you, who are sent by God to their homes, neighborhoods, and schools.

Church has left the building!

We believe that Jesus is the greatest surprise in the world, and so His followers must be surprising.  So when we gather on Sundays, we remind ourselves that worship truly begins when the church leaves the building to be the Surprise of God to a World in Need.
What is the Story of Surprise?
In 2013, Matt and Lacee Anderson moved to North Dakota in order to start Surprise Church with assistance of Charity Lutheran and Calvary Lutheran churches. Inspired by the Parable of the Prodigal Son–in which a lost young man was welcomed home with a Surprise Party–they dreamed of a community of “Good Older Brothers” who would be the Surprise of God to a world in need.
Surprise Church Bismarck was born on October 12, 2014, with the vision to develop and send people to impact the local community and start new churches.
On October 1, 2017, Surprise Church Mandan was born, the first of many new churches that believe in a God who would rather than condemn us.
Our Master Plan
Every year, our team creates a three-year plan for how Surprise Church will changing lives and surprise people for God. Please check out this year’s Master Plan and let us know if you have questions! 
What “denomination” is Surprise?
Surprise doesn’t really fit into an old-fashioned category that once defined or divided churches. Surprise has always been an “inter-denominational” community of people from every background. At the same time, we are proud of our roots in the Lutheran heritage (LCMC). We welcome people from every background to join us and can’t wait to meet you!

The Path for Growth

Click here to learn how we help people grow at Surprise!