Thursday, June 30, 2005

Beer Core Value For One California Church

Hat tip WorldmagBlog.
"Beer is one of our core values. We enjoy it and like to drink it. Drinking is part of our culture and a great way to spend time with others," said Pastor Justin Bragg of The Resolved church. "The American church has perpetuated this separatist movement that we shouldn't mix with nonbelievers. We want to go where people are. We don't expect people to come to us. In [Pacific Beach], people are at the bars, parties, and drinking beer, so this is where we go." The Resolved church plans to have a Theology on Tap night for people to meet over a few pitchers of beer to talk about God. "We definitely hold to scripture, so we don't get drunk when we go, but we believe we need to be in the world, not of the world," said Bragg. "It's messy and I know we will make errors along the way, but our confidence is in Christ, and we rely on the Holy Spirit to guide us." Pastor Duane Smets added, "We see it as being missional that we are just hanging out with other people. Loving people with no agenda in the time we spend with others. We really want to care for others and help them out. Most nonbelievers just need a hug. We want to take down the barriers that a lot of churches have put up. Some churches think that the gospel means that you don't drink, smoke, and that you vote for Bush. Jesus didn't seem to have any qualifications with the people He hung out with, and He wasn't involved in politics or military things."

Last Sunday night, seven people gathered in an 850-square-foot apartment in Pacific Beach to read and study the Bible. Pastor Smets opened the service with lyrics from the band Bright Eyes and a prayer from Ansem of Canterbury. "The Bright Eyes song conveys words of longing by a non-Christian and the prayer of Ansem is a prayer of satisfied longing [in God]," said Smets. Pastor Justin Bragg preached a sermon on Romans 1:18. Pastors Smets and Bragg rotate the preaching each week. After the sermon, people pray and take communion, using as the elements a loaf of bread and a bottle of wine. A song from Sigur Rós played in the background during the communion time. "During communion, we will play Johnny Cash, Radiohead, or even an old hymn on the stereo," said Pastor Smets. "It is a time of reflection where people deal with their soul and God."

There is no better combonation in the world than theology and beer. Here is the church's website, which is under construction. I'll pray they honor the Lord by serving a few craft beers.

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