Church recovers its ministry to children, then encourages other churches
“We want to connect with our community, but we’re not sure how.”
It’s something we hear often from churches. The RCA has a rich history in global mission, but what about closer to home? Until recently, many churches understood “mission” as something done mostly by missionaries in faraway places.
Our commitment to local missional engagement means that we celebrate and encourage the many examples of RCA churches doing creative ministry with their communities. It’s a renewed focus on mission principles that have always been a part of the RCA. Realizing that churches are making less of an impact in their neighborhoods than they once were, we are challenged to embrace the totality of the Great Commission. We are committed to offering resources, networking, and support to any church that wants to engage in mission locally.
Most local mission opportunities fall into one of three broad categories:
Want to get involved with local mission, but don’t know how? We can help.
Stories about Local Missional Engagement
After attending SpringHill Day camp this past summer, more than 100 children made decisions to follow Christ. Many of their families now come to worship at the church that sponsored the camp—the Beecher, Illinois, campus of Faith Church (RCA) in Dyer, Indiana.
The camp has allowed Faith Beecher to build a bridge to the community, especially the junior high school next door.
When it comes to communication, the metaphorical gap between teenagers and their parents can sometimes seem as wide as the Grand Canyon. Teens are growing up in a world that bears only slight resemblance to the one their parents knew, making it sometimes difficult for the two generations to relate. But California pastor Jesse Winkler is part of a pastors group working to bridge this gap in his community.
Sharing space isn’t always easy—but one congregation finds that working through the challenges is more than worth it.
Women at a church in Midland, Michigan, love to bless and support young single moms. “To walk beside a young mom, encouraging her in her life’s journey, is one of the biggest blessings of my life,” says Merci Danielson.
Danielson mentors moms through Young Lives, an outreach program of Young Life that her church, Midland Reformed, hosts during the school year. “We have club two times each month where countless women and men [from churches around Midland] serve as mentors, club helpers, childcare workers, and also provide some of the meals we enjoy each club,” she says.