Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Becoming one church with two main languages and many cultures

"For my house will be called a house of prayer for all nations." From Is. 56:7

Our congregation is made up of individuals from many different cultures and countries. In 2003, we received a Transforming Church Grant from our denomination to help us grow as a church and explore this wonderful thing that God is doing at Westminster. In 2004, we were able to move Rev. Stella from a non-ordained position to an ordained call to Associate Pastor of Hispanic Ministries. Every Sunday, separate worship services are held in Spanish and English. There are many other Spanish classes and ministries during the week as well.

The goal is not to bring everyone to the same cultural behaviors, but to bring everyone to a more full relationship with God. We are committed to celebrating the differences between the people within the church and seeking to help each person meet God in the setting which they feel most natural.

Some of the activities associated with this effort are:

• Intentionally combine activities with English and Spanish speaking members
o Men’s Breakfast
o Women’s Retreat
o Mother’s Day Dinner
o Cross-Preaching
o Bilingual Services
• Build more leadership from Communidad Latinoamericana for the whole church –Deacons/Elders

Thursday, November 10, 2005

Celebrating Children and Youth, being intergenerational

Jesus said, "Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them..." From Matthew 19:14

Westminster has always placed high value on children and youth. We see the youth and children of the church as part of the body of Christ today, and the core of the church tomorrow. Over the next year, there will be an intentional emphasis on building Westminster's youth ministry.

Along with the value given to the children and youth of the church is a desire for healthy connections between all age groups. WPC has a strong belief that the older members of the church have valuable insights for the younger, and that activities and programs that encourage contact and cooperation among older and younger members of the church are beneficial to the vitality and growth of the whole church.

Some of the activities associated with this effort:

• New youth director for Jr. and Sr. High
• Develop volunteer staff for youth programs
• Fix-up CE Building
o Nursery remodeled
o Playground remodeled
o Bathrooms remodeled (3 more)
o Carpets in 2 rooms (3yr. old & computer room)
• Intentional intergenerational programming

Monday, November 07, 2005

Reaching out to others by showing God’s love in practical ways

"Dear children, let us not love with words or speech but with actions and in truth" 1 John 3:18

We desire to reach out in a way that will allow and encourage open conversations about how God loves us.

Some of the activities associated with this effort are:

• Servant Evangelism outreaches
• A church-wide philosophy of ministry that focuses on practical applications of faith

Saturday, November 05, 2005

Becoming a faithful partner with our neighborhood

"The Word became flesh and blood, and moved into the neighborhood." From John 1:14, The Message

Westminster is actively involved with many of the neighborhood associations, business associations, and volunteer groups operating in the same community as the church building. Many of these groups currently use the Westminster facilities for meetings. Neighborhood involvement is a response to God's call to be good stewards of the world. It is also a way to live out God's command to love our neighbors. As Westminster takes seriously its commitment to the local community, all church members will be inspired to be good stewards in their own local communities.

Some of the activities associated with this effort are:

• Create a greater awareness in the congregation of WPC's community involvement.
• Further a common understanding of the Biblical basis for community involvement
• Increase Westminster’s visibility in the neighborhood
• Making our property more attractive and accessible

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Yoda's Parents

Here is Yoda Baby with her Star Wars parents!

Yoda Baby

I'm interrupting all this church talk to post a picture of my granddaughter as Yoda.

Inspiring personal outreach in our own communities and around the world

"You are the light of the world….let your light shine…" From Matthew 5:14 –16

One statement from a town hall meeting was something like this:
" I see a big emphasis on the church reaching out to its local community, but where do I learn how to reach out to
my friends and my community? "

One of the primary ways we see God working through Westminster is in the actions of church members reaching out to their neighbors.

Westminster is called to provide the training we each need to effectively reach out to our neighbors and show God’s love to those around us. A picture of this ministry would show the members of our church spread out through all of the neighborhoods in which we live and work, each individually reaching out to the people we know.

Some of the activities associated with this effort are:

• Making worship and prayer a priority
• Short Term Missions program
• Strategy to assimilate new people
• Leadership Training program
• Small Group Ministry

2006 WPC Vision

"So that the follower of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work." From 2 Timothy 3:17

Over the last two years, there has been a deliberate effort to seek out God’s will for our church. This has included the work of the Vision Team formed in 2004, a series of Town Hall meetings with the congregation, and a large portion of the Session activities during 2005. Church leaders have been seeking God's leading, listening to you, and searching their hearts to discover what God is doing in the midst of our church. Early on in the process the session decided not to cast their own visions and ask God to bless what they wanted to do. Instead, the session has been seeking to discover what God is already doing because it is blessed already.

The results of this effort have been summarized in the following description of the primary objective of the church for the near term:


This vision comes directly from our mission statement and grows out of two presuppositions that are core values of Westminster. The first is a firm belief that all people have a God-given purpose in life. The second is the conviction that God calls the church to equip and inspire people to answer that call. The qualifying words, "of all ages,” speak to our commitment to seeing everyone of any age as a vital part of God's church.

I'll be blogging the descriptions of the major objectives and characteristics of the planned ministry of Westminster, and a set of specific goals for Westminster for the next 12-16 months.