How to develop genuine church community

May 14, 2009 has a forum titled “Ask the Experts” in which experienced church leaders share their knowledge about ministry leadership. This question was posted: “How have you nurtured and sustained genuine community in the life of your church?
And, here is Ken Fong‘s response:

The compelling vision of our church [Evergreen] is to create a “faith village,” in which the primary model of family is the intergenerational collective. Here we can all benefit from the complex diversity of age, stage, ethnicity, and class. While it is daunting to overcome the prevailing influences of individualism and the focus on the biological family, we have managed to move over half of our congregation into parish-based “Neighborhood Sedaqah Groups.” There they are encouraged to practice our core values of hope, humility, and hospitality. Some of these groups are little more than Bible studies, but many others have gone deeper in exploring spiritual disciplines and sharing real needs and concerns.

We also try to embody this communal spirit in our worship services, from the more conversational mode of preaching to the enticement of our gospel-flavored music. We are in the process of remodeling and expanding our church campus so that even the structures and spaces feel more like a “faith village.” The children are moving to a more central location, and an intimate garden and prayer labyrinth are being installed. We are also adding affordable daycare facility and a teen drop-in center to foster greater closeness with those in our surrounding community.

Even though we’re not a megachurch, it’s still a challenge to break down the barriers, whether social or physical, that prevent us from being the body of Christ. But because we are convinced that this is God’s vision, we will continue to press on in this direction.

You may add a comment here, or at the “Ask the Experts” forum.

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Comments:One Response

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September 23rd, 2009

I’m interested of helping and serving group of people who need food,medicine & clothings/ One morning while I was walking as part of my daily exercise, I observed that there are lots of people in our neighboring community who needs material support to develop, improve and uplift their living conditions.While extending the necessary support to these less fortunate brethren, I could share them the word of GOD in my own simple way for them to know that the LORD loves them without conditions whatsoever.These passion in my heart was my obsession when I was still working in an electric cooperative where I was privileged to visit community in remote places of our coverage area. I just hope & pray that the LORD will show and lead me the way to serve these people.I’m looking forward of organizing a foundation that would serve the needs of our less fortunate brethren.

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