Frequently Asked Questions

Who is welcome at your church?

All are welcome to attend, especially you! We seek to provide a grace-filled atmosphere of acceptance and welcome for all visitors and regular attendees, regardless of their background. Of course, we do not discriminate on the basis of nationality, race, finances, politics, gender, religion, or age. We currently have both young and old, affluent and unemployed, white collar and blue collar, men and women, boys and girls, etc. We value and celebrate our differences and our unity in Christ. We are a church for anybody, but recognize we are not for everybody—that is, your preferences may not fit our style of doing church. However, if you come, we will serve your spiritual needs to the best of our ability in a way that draws your attention to Jesus.

How can I get to your church?
How can I get to heaven?

There are three key elements to understand–the gospel, your response, and the result. The gospel is key because it explains that Jesus is the only way to heaven. The gospel is the good news that God has come to us in the person of His one and only Son, Jesus Christ. The Bible tells us that “God with us” was one of Jesus’ names while he was on earth. Jesus lived a sinless life, died on a cross for others’ sins (since he didn’t have any of his own), was buried, raised back to life from the dead, and exalted again to the place of glory he previously had with the Father. From heaven Jesus sent the promised Holy Spirit to bring people to understand this and respond. Your response is key since merely knowing these facts does not change your life. You must first repent. When you alone decide what to do, to say, and to think, you are selfishly rejecting God’s authority over you. This is the essence of sin and keeps God at a distance. His mercy is kept on hold and his judgment is active. To repent is literally to “rethink” or to change your mind about who is God in your life. To believe means to trust your whole being to Christ. You whole-heartedly embrace these new-to-you truths about Jesus. The result is a change in your standing before God. You are now his forgiven son or daughter. Along with that you get a new heart (new desires and purpose in living), a new direction (to please God not yourself), a new family (others who are related to God through Christ), a new mission (to please him and tell others about your new life), and a new destination-voila “Heaven!”

NOTE: Along with repentance and belief, you should be baptized. (Baptism does not save you. Unless it is combined with repentance and belief, you only get wet!) Going down into the water and coming up again is a picture of your own death, burial, and resurrection with Jesus. Baptism is the biblical way to tell others that you are now identified as a Christ follower.
What does your church positively stand for?

We are pro-lifepro-lightpro-truth, and pro-grace. These four positive statements come from God’s character as revealed in the Bible and are to be reflected in His people.

Pro-lifePro-lightPro-truthPro-grace

Pro-life means more than being anti-abortion. It is positively being for life in all ages and stages, for the unborn and the age worn. Life is God’s idea, now and forever. The Father creates life (Genesis 2:7); the Son is the Author of life (Acts 3:15); and, the Spirit gives life (John 6:33). The Bible speaks of the crown of life, the tree of life, the water of life, the Bread of life, and the book of life. We are saved to eternal life. The devil comes to “steal, kill, and destroy” life. Jesus comes to fill life to the full (John 10:10)! Being pro-life does not mean we are pros at life. We don’t always get it right. Nevertheless, we choose to live in the light.

Pro-light means that we love the light. The Father is Light and in him is no darkness at all (1 John 1:5). The Son is the Light of the world (John 8:12). His Word is a light for our path (Psalm 119:105). Light makes all things visible (Ephesians 5:14). Light doesn’t create, it only reveals. God-light reveals sin like the dentist’s light reveals cavities. Trying dentistry or surgery by candlelight makes more sense than living an unexamined life. We need to welcome God’s examination of our lives (Psalm 139:23f The Message). “The fruit of the light consists in all goodness, righteousness, and truth” (Ephesians 5:9).

Pro-truth means accepting what the light reveals as true. Psalm 43:3 says that we have two guides into the presence of the LORD, “Send forth your light and truth and let them guide me; let them bring me to your holy mountain, to the place where you dwell.” The Father is the God of Truth (Isaiah 65:16). The Son is the Truth (John 14:6); the Spirit is the Spirit of Truth (John 14:17); and, God’s Word is Truth (John 17:17). The “belt of truth” is placed first in the list of spiritual armor in Ephesians 6:14. (Without a belt, our hands would not be free to wield the sword of the Spirit or hold the shield of faith—we’d be holding our pants up!) “Speaking the truth in love” is the key to open and honest relationships in the body of Christ (Ephesians 4:15). Godly relationships grow in the ground of grace.

Pro-grace means that our knowledge of the truth is used to heal, not wound. The “law came through Moses, grace and truth came through Jesus Christ” (John 1:17). It is through the Light that we see what we are, and through the Truth that we understand our guilt, and through grace we are forgiven. “For Christ died for sins once for all, the Innocent for the guilty to bring us to God” (1 Peter 3:18). There is nothing we must bring to God other than a repentant heart. There is no penance. “In repentance and rest is your salvation” (Isaiah 30:15). We rest from worry for “whoever confesses and forsakes sin finds mercy” (Proverbs 28:13). Gracious in word and deed, we are to be a forgiven and forgiving people.

Do you provide childcare at all of your services?

Yes, though there are exceptions depending on the activity. When childcare is provided, it is in a safe and secure setting, staffed by volunteers that are members or regular attenders of our church. Each volunteer must apply and undergo a background check before being approved to work with children and youth. In addition, we provide on site supervision to deal with any problems. We want to work closely with parents to see that they are comfortable with the care we offer.

Can other groups and individuals use your church facilities?

Yes, other groups may use the facilities for special community events (blood drives, businessmen and women, etc.) and church activities. Presently, we do not encourage wedding rentals of the church, but we are open to talking with couples on an individual basis. If you have an event you would like to host at our church, give us a call. The church office (503-873-6181) can provide preliminary information and direct you to which forms you need to complete for pre-approval to get your event on the church calendar.

Do you have programs and opportunities for all ages?

Yes, an age-graded Sunday School program begins with the two and three year olds through sixth grade. We also have an AWANA program for children. A junior high (middle school) and high school youth group meets on Sundays, Wednesday night at 7 PM, and for special events. College age students meet for Bible study and fellowship, often on Sunday nights. There are currently three adult Sunday School classes to choose from. Men’s and women’s ministries meet occasionally. Another ministry opportunity is the adult choir. The eldest official group is the Ambassadors for ages 55 and older. Finally, Life Groups meet weekly in host homes in various neighborhoods near the church. No matter what your age and spiritual needs, many find participation in a small group to be the most significant, and helpful, way to build their relationship with God.

How is your church organized and who is responsible for what goes on?

Jesus is the Head of the church. He has the final say since it is his church. Following the biblical pattern, a team of elders (presently three) leads the church. This type of church organization is sometimes referred to as “elder led, congregationally affirmed.” On a practical level, one of the elders has been called and recognized and is paid as a full-time, vocational pastor. The elder team provides counseling, member care, teaching, oversight, and leadership. The ministry of preaching also is shared among the elders, with the vocational pastor taking the majority of Sundays in any given month. No one elder bears the whole load, but they function together as God designed each in his unique role and responsibilities. Shared ministry is also a model for how the church members can care for and serve one another.

How are you involved in the world beyond the local community?

We carry on an active missions program of outreach in our county, state, and overseas. A complete list of all mission agencies and individuals is available upon request from the church office. Besides financial support, missionaries are regularly prayed for and written updates are circulated. Short-term missions (STM) provide opportunities for significant cross-cultural learning and serving. In the past, one special area of involvement has been western Honduras. Our church has been described as “missions minded” since we actively seek to disciple the nations to worship Jesus as Lord and Savior.

Do you provide counseling and other services for non-members?

Yes, we do provide counseling and pastoral care for non-members. However, our members (and regular attending non-members) are our priority. We do not currently have a professional, licensed counselor on staff. However several of our elders have training, experience, and considerable godly wisdom applying Scriptural principles to life’s difficulties. We are especially interested in helping marriages and families to remain together and thrive. The counselor/counselee relationship remains confidential and protected within the bounds of the legal requirements by the state of Oregon. There is no fee for the counseling services of the elders or their approved colleagues.