Renew Church exists to follow Christ to Renew our neighborhoods, city and world. We exist not just for the good of ourselves, but for the good of our entire community. This is not a new idea, but rather a way of patterning our lives after Jesus who was taken, blessed, broken, and given for the good of the whole world. As we participate in God’s mission of renewal… the world is healed, and we are transformed in the process!
We do this in a myriad of ways.
Individually: we are blessed and sent to embody the good news of Jesus’ renewal wherever we go: in our families, workplaces, social networks and neighborhoods.
As a church, we organize to participate in God’s renewal.
We see this every 1st Saturday at Know Your Neighbor, when we gather with all our neighbors who live in the beautiful homes of North Park as well as those who sleep on the streets. We come together and forge friendships over live music and free food for everyone. Instead of walking past each other and talking about one another; we sit and dine together, dance together, and get to know one another. As we do, the tapestry of the neighborhood is transformed, becoming more beautiful and connected!
We see this communal renewal every 3rd Thursday at the North Park Farmers’ Market, where we’ve been invited into the epicenter of our community to curate a place of connection, joy and creativity among children and adults. As we welcome and bring together neighbors from every conceivable background, we participate in the beauty of God’s reconnection, joy and peace in our community!
Recently, I was elected to the board of North Park Main Street, which is the Special Enhancement District that supports arts, culture, and entertainment of our community. In this role, I work with an amazing team to ensure local businesses and places of hospitality thrive. I have the honor and responsibility to influence and support policies that ensure all our neighbors flourish. Recently, while meeting with the staff of one of our City Council members to talk about policy options to care for our homeless neighbors, I was struck by the ways we are called to influence our community. We pray for our neighbors, we serve our neighbors, and we work for public policy that can lift up those most in need.
And of course, Renew is not the only expression of God’s renewal in our community. This is why we partner with other organizations along the way.
We partner with Uptown Community Services as they provide basic needs for our neighbors living on the streets. We refer friends seeking sustainable housing to Path, an amazing organization in our city that provides pathways to flourishing for our most needy neighbors.
Just 15 miles south in Tijuana, we partner with Cross Presence to provide help and relief to our migrant neighbors facing the most difficult circumstances we can imagine.
Across the ocean, we partner with Masala Ministries, which gives aid, relief and development focused on orphans and widows.
And in South Sudan, we partner with Harvesters International as we support hospitals that save lives among the most vulnerable people in the region, schools that educate the future of the country and orphanages that care for children in destitute circumstances.
All of this is done with a culture of partnership and relationship. We do not invest in hundreds of ministries in a shallow way, but rather in a few ministries with deep connections. We have much to offer, and even more to learn and receive.
When you are a part of Renew Church, you are part of a movement and community much bigger than what you see when we gather on Sundays or in Community Groups. You are a part of God’s global calling to renew our neighborhoods, city and world! When you give financially to Renew, you are helping fund this mission of renewal.
I’m grateful to be a part of this amazing community with you, and am excited for what God will do among us and through us as we journey together!
Peace to you,