Victory Life Center

Founding Minister
Richard D'Andrea Dover

In 1999, I, along with a youth pastor took some young people from a Woodinville Church to the Capitol Hill area through the City Dive Program of Prisoners for Christ. City Dive is a program where young people have three days of exposure to the inner city and juvenile correctional facilities.

On the first night of City Dive the youth were taken to Capitol Hill. We walked the streets with a ministry that was handing out hot drinks and blankets to the homeless, drug addicts, and alcoholics. My heart was broken. There were so many lost people and I kept wondering why there were not more Christians out on the street. The people were like sheep without a shepherd. I wondered why Christians were not doing more to help the people.

Over the next two years I would think about Capitol Hill at times.  I would think "Maybe at some point Christians will not just drive through Capitol Hill to show their friends all the 'crazy people', but actually to do something to reach the people." I knew it wasn't suppose to me  because I was moving back to Alaska to start a church, and I don't like 'city life'.

However, I just could not forget about my experience. I finally decided to start going to Capitol Hill on Friday nights and hand out Bible tracts with a friend. We did this for about four months and then my friend got discouraged and quit going to Capitol Hill. I could not quit. I then found somebody who was doing a feeding & clothing program on Saturday afternoons. So I started coming every Saturday. I could sense the Lord was telling me to not move to Alaska, but to be committed to sharing the love of Christ with the Capitol Hill community.

As I would think in my head, "what would Jesus do?", the thought kept coming to my mind that He would be living amongst the people. So, I finally moved from Lynwood (I was renting a  cozy house with fruit trees and a quiet country setting) to Capitol Hill and rented a small studio. I felt that I had sacrificed much for ministry.

As I spent more time on Capitol Hill, I realized that the key to reaching the people was to be around them. To 'rub shoulders with them'. I then realized that I needed to quit my good paying job and work out of my apartment so that my working hours could be flexible to allow for more fruitful ministry time. For the last 18 months I have been self-employed. It has been very hard financially. Very hard. But it is a minor cost to be obedient to the call of God.

I love the people on Capitol Hill. I do not love their sinful behavior, but I love them. I am committed to minister on Capitol Hill as long as it is God's will. It is the will of God for now for me to be a shepherd to the lost sheep.

It would have been much easier to move to Alaska to start a church. It could have been a 'successful' church plant. But I would have missed the call of God. I challenge each individual that is reading this to make sure you are obedient to the call of God. And when you see a need, instead of just wondering who is going to meet that need, ask God if it is you who is to meet that need.

Remember, success in the kingdom of God is not based upon number of people reached or conversions, it is based upon being obedient. Those who are the most obedient are the most successful in the eyes of God.

We currently have a cell group that meets once a week on Capitol Hill as an outreach of Victory Life Center. In the future we will be starting spirit-filled church services on Capitol Hill.

I married my wonderful wife Carmi in 2004. Learn about the call of God in her own life, by going to our family website.