Tuesday, March 27, 2007

The Refuge at Catalina

As I said Sunday, I think our services are awesome! But we do suffer from a lack of identity and a lack of visibility. I have actually been working on (OK, thinking about) these issues for a long time. We batted around some name ideas at a brainstorming session a couple of years ago, but nothing ever came of it. Well, I finally got motivated and around the same time, came in contact with people who could help. Accent Banners and Signs made our pumpkin patch banner for us. They did a great job, had reasonable prices, and were very easy to work with (communicate via email, pick up and deliver, etc.). So, I took the opportunity to get things moving. Worship in the hall will now be…The Refuge. I add “at Catalina” on a lot of the signs because I want people to know that we are clearly a part of Catalina UMC, we are not a separate group renting space. The Refuge stuck out to me for two reasons. I think it says what we want to be: a safe place where people can feel at home and be themselves. I think it also expresses our theology. “God is our refuge and strength, a ever-present help in trouble” (Psalm 46.10). I say “alternative” worship instead of contemporary. I say this because we are an alternative to the traditional worship service, but also because we may use methods or practices that have their roots in the ancient church—hardly contemporary, but not the traditional worship either. Hence, alternative. We will have 3 sandwich board signs out around campus announcing that there is another worship service on campus. I think most of the time new folks coming to Catalina are only aware of the sanctuary services. Lets educate them! We will have a couple of large banners/signs up on the stage (“up front signs”) announcing who we are. And we will have a banner hanging on the front of the A Building (office building) that will announce to all the folks who drive down First Street, who play in Himmel Park, who jog around the park, and to all the day school parents, that there is a casual, come-as-you-are service on Sundays in the hall. For people who want to give church a try, we want them to know where we are. I will also put announcements in the religion section of the newspaper, and when the traditional service does their ad for the third Sunday music emphasis, I will occasionally add an announcement about us also.

We all probably have ideas about how we can “tweak” our worship to make it even better. Feel free to share those. Leave them as comments to this post.

You folks do so much to make our worship what it is. We want to share you and our message and our worship with everyone around.

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