Sojourn Church to be active in the community
The beginning of regular Sunday gatherings for Sojourn Church is planned for 5 p.m. Jan. 13, a culmination of 11 months of preparation through small community groups.
Pastor Trent Chambers moved here from Kentucky and began the church plant with seven families. For the Canton native, it was a return to his roots and a chance to establish a church in a bit of a different way.
“We spent six months getting to know each other, fleshing out the gospel and what it means to be the church and live out the gospel in community with each other,” Chambers said.
“Another three months were spent walking through what it means for the church to be present in our culture, learning what people around us believe and how we can practically display the gospel, meet needs and speak to unbelievers.”
After establishing the foundational relationships, members are prepared to become engaged in the vision of downtown Woodstock, according to Chambers. Sojourn members want to go beyond the Sunday gatherings and scatter through the community daily on a “mission to make Christ known and demonstrate His love to all we meet.”
As part of an effort called the Sojourn Church Planting Network, Chambers is leading his congregation to fill a void that the presence of church has lacked in life and culture. Rather than hosting events to draw residents to the church building, Chambers wants to see Sojourn members present and active in community-sponsored activities.
The unchurched population is more prevalent than most people realize, said the pastor, referencing 2010 statistics that show about 400,000 people who live within 10 miles of downtown Woodstock aren’t churchgoers.
“As churches begin to model redemptive relationships and to seek to be the family of God Monday through Sunday, unbelievers or those who are bitter or don’t know Christ at all will find that community attractive,” said Chambers.
Sojourn, a part of the Etowah Baptist Association, holds worship at 5 p.m. Sundays at 231 Arnold Mill Way, (home of Resurrection Anglican Church), Woodstock 30188. www.sojournwoodstock.com.