Becoming a multi-campus church – one church with multiple locations – is no easy task. It changes the way we do almost everything! It broadens our focus even more outward. We begin to see beyond what’s right in front of us … to step out in faith into new areas and connect with new people. Sure, it’s unknown; and yes, it’ll take a lot of effort … but in the end, we have an opportunity to reach out further to share the hope of the love of Jesus in new communities and families.
Becoming Multi-Campus … Why Now?
“The harvest is great, but the workers are few. So, pray to the Lord of the Harvest; ask Him to send more workers into His fields.” (Matthew 9:37-38)
Jesus was speaking to His disciples because as He traveled, He kept coming upon crowds of people who were confused – “like sheep without a shepherd,” the Bible says. How many of us could relate to that feeling before we knew Jesus or during a period in our lives where we may have stepped back from Him?
It seems odd to talk about harvest as we head into spring. Shouldn’t we be talking about planting? The truth is we’re talking about both. There’s no harvest without planting! We’re all called to plant seeds of who Jesus is – His goodness and the salvation He offers – into the hearts of others who don’t know who He is, or haven’t yet believed in Him.
But, Jesus had more to say to His disciples on this topic:
“You know the saying, ‘Four months between planting and harvest.’ But I say wake up and look around. The fields are already ripe for harvest. The harvesters are paid good wages, and the fruit they harvest is people brought to eternal life. What joy awaits the planter and the harvester alike! You know the saying, ‘One plants and another harvests.’ And it’s true. I sent you to harvest where you didn’t plant; others had already done the work, and now you will get to gather the harvest.” (John 4:35-38)
I believe this is both the time to continue to plant and also to harvest as we move into new fields in Southwest Calgary. God is giving us an opportunity to harvest what we didn’t sow and an opportunity to plant seeds in the hearts of people in both the existing communities and the new communities being built. These “fields” – south of Fish Creek Park and west of Macleod Trail – are ripe, with a handful of like-minded churches reaching out to serve what will become 138,000 people living in this part of southwest Calgary. What an amazing opportunity!
Let me be clear … These aren’t just numbers or impersonal statistics. These are real people who need to know Jesus, who need to know His salvation is real and available … people who need to know there are others they can do life with as they grow in their relationship with Jesus. Let’s open our eyes and hearts to the people God has placed around us. We need to ask God for a desire to reflect all the facets of who Jesus is to our southwest neighbours: friend, companion, listener, servant, prayer advocate, and teacher, just to name a few.
The agricultural word picture Jesus uses helps us understand the process of sharing all of this with people we encounter. What it means to FAC is that in everything we do as a local church we want to be helping people grow in their awareness and understanding of the love Jesus has for them and what it means for their lives. Having said that, though we draw a lot on this word picture, we’ve opted not to plant a new church (i.e. start a new church that will eventually be independent of FAC) … We’ve opted instead to adopt a multi-campus model – to launch a new campus of FAC that will enable us to be who we are as a local church more, well, locally in SW Calgary.
Building Teams for FAC Southwest
By launching an FAC Southwest Campus at Glenmore Christian Academy in September 2019, we have the opportunity to be all facets of Jesus to the rapidly expanding communities in the southwest of Calgary. My hope is to establish two teams:
- A team of volunteers willing to connect with the communities in this area as early as this spring, going into these neighbourhoods and praying through the streets for all God wants to do through this FAC campus. This team will intentionally pray for the residents and meet some needs through a number of community events that will serve them and build community for them. These options are a great way for anyone who doesn’t feel called to attend the Southwest Campus to still be a part of what God is calling FAC to.
- A team of volunteers who want to make the Southwest Campus their FAC home. This will be a team of people who have a desire to speak to their friends and neighbours and encourage them to check out church; to invite them to experience the community they can be a part of. There are all kinds of opportunities to serve these same people during our weekend gathering. There’s a need for those who love to meet new people; those who love to make people feel welcome, cared for, and prayed for. We’ll need prayer teams, music teams, people who like the technical side of a weekend gathering, and those who enjoy setting up and tearing down. There will also be a need for those who love to care for and teach children. The possibilities to serve are almost endless!
God really wants all of us to be workers in His fields – and He’s calling each of us to play a part. How do we do that? We start by praying, spending time with God, and asking Him what He wants from us. It’s about learning how God has uniquely wired each of us, understanding the passions and gifts He’s given uniquely to each of us, and asking Him to show us what He wants us to do with them – maybe in a new way that will bring us great joy.
We have nothing to fear … We already know God has been (and is still) preparing us and paving the way for launching the Southwest Campus. We are ready! We’re ready to serve, ready to reach out, ready to love, and ready to care! Are you ready to join in?
Southwest Campus Pastor
Email / 403-723-6392
You may also be interested in …