Since then many of you have been asking questions about this new church. And I am glad that you have continued to ask questions. Starting (or planting as we often call it) new faith communities, new churches, is part of our common call as Christians. By continuing to ask questions hopefully you are continuing to think about what it might look like for St. John to partner with a new congregation in the coming years.
So here I go attempting to answer some of your most frequently asked questions, and inviting more!
Is St. John starting a new church?
Well, no. St. John is not starting a new church. What we are doing is supporting the work of the Alaska United Methodist Conference in our communal (as Alaskan United Methodists) work of establishing this new faith community here in Anchorage.
Why start a new church?
Anchorage is one of the most culturally and ethnically diverse cities in our nation. But if you look at the United Methodist congregations in Anchorage, you will see many faces missing. This new church will intentionally embrace the diversity of our city and seek to create a multicultural expression of Christian faith with a particular emphasis on Alaskan Native communities and culture.
When will this new church start?
A pastor (often called a “church planter”) will be appointed beginning July 1, 2018. This does not mean that a church will immediately start to worship on Sunday mornings in a church building. It may be months or years before that happens.
Where will this church be?
Our conference has identified the neighborhood of Nunaka Valley and the surrounding neighborhoods as places of emphasis for this new church. In part this is because of the cultural diversity and resources available in that part of Anchorage.
So what IS St. John’s role in all this?
We hope that making a gift from our PFD Offering this fall can be the beginning of our relationship with this new, yet-to-be faith community. Our role following this gift continues with prayer: for the pastor being appointed to this work, and for the lives that will be touched. As the community forms, they may ask us for additional help, we do not yet know what that may be.
Can I still give?
Yes! Simply use an offering envelope, the memo line on your check, or give online at stjohneagle.com, click the big red GIVE button, and select “PFD offering.”
If you have any more questions feel free to ask either of your pastors!
Grace and peace,