What is the value of this model?
We believe that there is a message within the method. It is easy for a parent to renege on biblical responsibilities to teach and train their children, and for the generations to avoid interaction with one another, when a congregation is separated by age, and most ministry is done through age segregated programs. The value of this model lies in a greater conformity to the biblical ideal of family and congregation. We are not pursuing this model because we are too lazy to have a Sunday School, etc. Rather, we want to train and assist our people to be involved with a wide span of ages, and to see our families functioning as they should with training, instruction and worship happening at home.
Are singles welcome?
Yes! We believe it is valuable for singles and for married folks to regularly interact. Beyond that, it is good for children to interact with singles, too. The greater the cross section of the population, the greater the value for all of us.
Are seniors welcome?
Yes! Similar to the previous question, it strengthens a church to have children associating with and talking to those of their grandparent’s generation, and vice-versa. We desire the stability and wisdom that the aged can bring to us. Parents, who have already raised their children, are a valuable asset in teaching and assisting young parents to do their job properly.
What about problem kids in the service?
We have a crying room where children can be taken until they are under control and then brought back into the service. We will try to offer assistance and training on how to better manage children in the service and how to help them participate in worship.
Are single parent families welcome?
We believe this would be a very healthy atmosphere for single-parent families, since there will be the opportunity for children and adults to interact on a regular basis.
How will struggling families do in this model?
They will struggle here, as they will anywhere. We are committed, however, to loving them and offering whatever counsel and assistance to them that we can. They may find better solutions to long term problems among us than they might elsewhere.
How will you do outreach?
We will constantly encourage families to reach out into their own community. We also hope to begin a mercy ministry to reach the community near the church.
What are your priorities in worship?
The purpose of a worship service is to worship God. It is not primarily a teaching or evangelistic time. These may occur as a by-product, but focusing our attention on God, his character and attributes, his great grace and mercy toward us in Christ, and rejoicing as his children in the light of these truths is our goal. Issues of style must be governed by this priority! We also believe that we are to do only those things which God has commanded; and we are not to invent “new” ways to worship.
We use a mix of Psalms, hymns and more contemporary songs, but all with a focus on God and emphasizing the work of Christ for us. We work to have as much congregational participation in the service as possible, and normally will not have choirs and other special music (solos, etc.) so that the congregation will not be composed of observers but rather participants. We encourage family worship as well, so that when we meet on Sundays we will gather as a family of worshiping families. We will seek to have congregational participation in singing, Scripture readings, prayer, confessions of sin and faith and receiving Communion. Our order or worship follows the general pattern of confessing our sin, being assured of God’s pardon, rejoicing in his grace, receiving from God via Word and Sacrament, responding with gratitude in the offering.
If our kids are involved in a youth group or children’s ministry somewhere, will we be considered second rate Christians?
No! We are not opposed to parents deciding to use other ministries to supplement what you are doing at home. But the home is the focus that we want to maintain and promote.