Our mission and vision sounds exciting but how are we going to plant so many churches?
Quite honestly, we don’t know all the steps that will be involved. There are a number of different approaches to church planting and a number of existing models that we can learn from. Our path will certainly vary from others based on our geographic location, our time in history, and the people God has called into our faith community. God has planted this vision in our hearts and we want to remain open to His perfect plan and timing for how we will fulfill all He has asked us to do. We do know that every Partner of Faith has a vital role in implementing this vision.
What do we mean by churches anyway?
The churches we will be planting will be different than what we traditionally think of as church. Instead, they might be better described as "faith communities" or "micro-churches" or "ministry initiatives". They will have simple leadership structures and may meet in coffee houses or even in people’s homes. They might be born out of small groups that eventually grow large enough to support their own worship service.
How are things going to change at Faith Lutheran Church as part of our mission and vision?
Faith Lutheran Church was born to be a discipleship growing and church planting faith community. Since day one, our purpose has been to share the Gospel of Jesus Christ and to help every Partner in ministry develop their faith and grow as disciples. For that reason, many aspects of Faith Lutheran Church will not be changing. We will continue to worship authentically, love and support each other, participate in small groups, and serve in the community.
Two areas where you will likely see some immediate changes are:
- We will be placing an even greater emphasis on small group participation as we believe small groups play a key role in developing our individual faith and have the potential to develop into independent faith communities.
- Lay people will begin playing more prominent leadership roles in our worship services and small groups as they prepare for planting new churches.
What is my role in our mission and vision?
Your role is crucial and will vary based on where you are in your discipleship journey and how you are being called to use your God given talents. As you are discovering your specific role(s), you are invited to be a growing disciple of Jesus Christ by:
- Connecting to God through worship, prayer, and Bible study
- Growing spiritually and sharing your life authentically through small groups
- Serving in the church and the community with the goal of making Christ known to others
- Giving generously to support the mission and ministries of the church
- Investing in the spiritual growth of others so that they can become disciples of Jesus
What is Pastor Brian’s role in our mission and vision?
In Ephesians 4:12, the Apostle Paul writes, "Their (meaning: 'the pastors’) responsibility is to equip God’s people to do His work and build up the body of Christ." Therefore, Pastor Brian’s primary focus will be about "equipping God’s people" (that’s us!) to grow as disciples and grow new disciples. Pastor Brian will also help provide focus and direction for implementing the mission and vision as each of us discovers our role(s) in fulling them.
We’re a Lutheran church. How can we also be non-denominational?
We believe God called Martin Luther to reform and renew the church. It was not Luther’s idea to start a new church denomination with organizational structures, powers, and hierarchies; rather Luther sought to help the church re-claim her original mission to make disciples of all nations through a movement of the Holy Spirit. We embrace Luther’s Biblical theology of grace alone, faith alone, and Scripture alone, along with the later reformers understanding of Christ alone and glory to God alone.
Like Luther, we are less concerned about organizational structures, powers, and hierarchies; and more focused on the mission of growing disciples of Jesus through a movement of the Holy Spirit. As a non-denominational (or post-denominational) congregation, we are an independent congregation that is not part of a larger church organization and is not subject to the authority of synods or bishops. We are affiliated with like-minded congregations through Lutheran Congregations in Mission for Christ (www.lcmc.net) but we are self-governing and answerable only to God Himself.