A New Church? Some F.A.Q.s About The Parish

On October 29, 2013 by Eddie

If you read my last post about the Parish, you know that we’re beginning the process of launching a network of neighborhood churches in the Atlanta area. For more information, check out our website or stay connected with our mailing list.

For now, here are some of the most frequently asked questions about the Parish, and my best attempts at some clear answers…

Q: So are you done at North Point? Like, forever? A: Absolutely not! This is one the coolest parts of this whole process. North Point has been so open-handed and gracious as we have walked through this process, and they are really excited to see what happens with The Parish in our city. Andy, Bill, Joel, and a huge number of other North Point staff have been more encouraging to Danielle and I than we could have ever imagined. In fact, I’ll still be leading worship from time to time at North Point, and will still remain a North Point Music artist.

This probably goes without saying, but there aren’t many churches in America that would be so gracious and helpful to a new church in their backyard. North Point (and Andy/Joel in particular) have continually amazed us with their integrity and purity of character. God has blessed that church for a reason, and I have been blessed to be a small part of the North Point story. So all that to say, you’ll still see me around, even if I’m just roaming the hallways every once in a while!

Q: Is The Parish going to be a North Point Strategic Partner? A: No, it is not, but that doesn’t mean we aren’t “partners.” In fact, because we love North Point so much, we are intentionally planting a very different church to reach a very different group of people. Our hope is that the Parish helps minister to the people who as of yet haven’t found a church home that is helping them pursue God, and are unlikely to attend any of the existing churches in there area for one reason or another. In order to reach the city of Atlanta, it will take hundreds of churches of all shapes and sizes, and we can’t wait to jump in and join the work!

Q: Does Atlanta really need another new church? A: Actually, yes! This may seem a bit strange in a city where it seems that there are new churches on every corner, but in fact studies have shown time and again that the best way to reach completely unchurched people is to plant new churches. The average new church gains 60-80% of its members from unchurched people, whereas churches over 10 years old gain 80-90% of their members from other congregations. This means the average new congregation will bring six to eight times more new people into the Body of Christ than an older congregation of the same size. New churches also are home to a disproportionate number of younger people, and if the church in Atlanta needs anything it is a fresh attempt to reach the Millenial generation in our city.

Q: Where will it be located? A: You can find out a lot more information on this by checking out our website, but the answer is actually a bit complicated. Our first plant will be in the Roswell/Alpharetta area, but our vision is to plant five of these churches in the first five years. So although Roswell is where we’ll start, the hope is that in 2015 we will have a local Parish closer to downtown Atlanta. Remember, the goal is to reach the whole city one zip code at a time, not to gather the entire city into one zip code!

Q: When will you begin meeting? A: Our first public service will be held right before Christmas, on Saturday, December 21st. After that, we’ll begin meeting more frequently in January, 2014 with a goal of officially launching in August, 2014. If you’d like to stay up to date on what’s happening with the Parish so you don’t miss it, please feel free to sign up for The Parish email newsletter.

Q: What the heck is an Anglican church? A: I’ve tried to answer this question pretty thoroughly on The Parish website, so check that out for more information and links for those who want to do some more research. Just know this, it’s very old, very fresh, and extremely versatile. It’s not just a bunch of old guys in robes and hats! And remember, the decision to plant an Anglican church is extremely intentional as we are trying to reach a different group of people. It’s not for everyone, but that’s what’s so great about the diversity of the Body of Christ. 

Q: How can I be involved? A: Awesome – we need your help!  There are several big ways you can jump in, and we’ve laid them out at The Parish Website. Please click the link and jump on over, we’d love to have you on board!

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