Our Vision is to be a companionship of faith on a spiritual adventure following Jesus Christ.As a companionship of faith we are called to break bread with one another and share our lives in Christian love. We believe that God transforms our lives through the relationships we build in this companionship. We are called to follow Jesus Christ every day of our lives, knowing that he established the way, the truth, and the life for us all. We sincerely embrace Christ as we grow in discipleship. Together, our companionship and our discipleship strengthen our passion to live boldly in spiritual adventure. This spiritual vision prepares for the advent of God and challenges us to do justice, love mercy, and walk humbly with our God.
The Biblical foundations for this Vision: He has told you, O mortal, what is good; and what does the Lord require of youbut to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God? - Micah 6:8 Thomas said to him, 'Lord, we do not know where you are going. How can we know the way?' Jesus said to him, 'I am the way, and the truth, and the life.' - John 14:5-6
Our Mission is to gather and grow disciples of Jesus Christ.
The Biblical foundation for our Mission:"Put out into the deep water and let down your nets for a catch. ... Do not be afraid; from now on you will be catching people." ... they left everything and followed him. - Luke 5:4, 10-11
Our Calling and Response: We are called to follow Jesus Christ in the life he taught us to share.
We respond by building Christian spiritual skills:
We are called to grow in love that is kindled in our midst and shared with all.
We respond by strengthening healthy relationships:
We are called to invite others to discover the blessing of new life in Christ.
We respond by engaging the world in faithful witness:
THE PURPOSE OF VISION, MISSION, CALLING AND RESPONSEThe purpose of our Vision is to hold before the congregation a portrait of the kind of people God is calling us to be. It is presented as both a statement and a brief descriptive narrative to draw our spirits forward in faith. The biblical foundation for our Vision rests upon two passages that define the quality of life God requires of us and demonstrated in Jesus Christ. Our vision is a statement of being.
The purpose of our Mission is to clearly state nature of the work that God calls to do. It is a highly focused statement centered upon the work of disciple making. God calls disciples. We are sent to gather those whom God calls. Our ministry strengthens discipleship as people grow by the power of the Holy Spirit. The biblical foundation of our Mission reflects the call of Christ, the adventure of discipleship, and offers an affirmation of our capacity to fulfill the mission we have been given.
The purpose of our Calling and Response is to define the way that both our Vision and our Mission will shape our daily activities in tangible ways. You'll see the Vision reflected in the call to follow, grow, and invite. You'll discover the Mission being accomplished as we build spiritual skills, strengthen healthy relationships, and invite others to be blessed. Each response carries with it a series of necessary actions by which we can evaluate the relative progress we are making toward accomplishing our Mission and fulfilling our Vision.
BACKGROUND ON OUR VISION, MISSION, CALLING AND RESPONSE The guiding statements of our church were developed after an extensive time of prayer and conversation in our congregation. Starting in September, 2009, the congregation was invited to reflect upon the Vision and Mission that had guided our congregation over the past five years. The congregation was asked to discern if we should further embrace the guiding statements or to amend and/or rewrite our statements. People participated in multiple small groups called "Prayer Triads" and gathered as a whole in open meetings with Ed White of the Alban Institute during the course of this period of discernment. Elders of our Session participated in all of these activities and as a consequence of these many conversations, the new direction was identified.
The continuing Vision is a renewed embrace of the Vision that guided our congregation from 2005 to 2009. However, a brief narrative has been added to focus the Vision and its consequences for our life together. In addition, the biblical foundation shifted to claim passages from Micah and John. The former biblical foundation from Luke has not been forgotten, but rather now serves to undergird our Mission.
Our Mission is a more dramatic shift away from the Mission of 2005-2009. This change reflects the prayerful desire to more clearly focus our primary calling - disciple making. Even more, the congregation clearly wanted to emphasize the manner in which all of our effort is meant to bring about gospel transformation in tangible ways amidst our community and our congregation.
The Calling and Response is driven by a desire to integrate who we are and what we are to do. We do not intend to have a Vision that languishes as a distant ideal. We do not want a Mission that is simply a platitude. The great challenge for our congregation from 2010 to 2014 is to determine ways to receive the call of God and put that calling into active response. As a consequence of the time of prayer in 2009, we have begun restructuring the way we do ministry in a wide variety of ways that we hope will bear fruit in future witness.