Church Planting and Training for Crises
by Rev. John Wallace, Apostles By-the-Sea, Rosemary Beach, FL
When Apostles By-the-Sea was a new church plant, we knew we wanted to serve our community in ways that were bold, but never self-promoting; ways that focused on God’s Kingdom, not our own; and ways that cared more for our community than for credit. We have held to those values these last eight years.
During that time, our parish has faced a number of crises including the devastating Hurricane Michael in 2018, and most recently a forest fire that ravaged 33 homes in our community. By adopting a vision at our inception that embraced our community and their needs, we have been ready to help no matter what we are facing.
Church plants often launch with an integral focus on the community beyond the walls of the church. During this pandemic, all of us are now facing a world we have never known and ministry for which it may seem we were never trained. Yet, the church is still the church. We are called to our communities, even if those communities are behind virtual walls now. Be encouraged! God is doing a new thing! This new thing may not look as we imagined, but by keeping focused on Kingdom, not ourselves, and focusing on bold acts of love for our community regardless of credit, we may just enable others to encounter heaven in the midst of crisis.
Apostles has adopted two families who lost everything in the forest fire. The Rev. John Wallace, Rector at Apostles, offers this link if you feel led to contribute to this community: https://www.apostlesbythesea.com/mussett-fire.html, or you can mail a check with Fire written in the memo line to:
PO BOX 611 151
Rosemary Beach, FL 32461