Saturday, June 14, 2008

Church in a Coffee House?

The Pod Coffee House has been in operation for three weeks now and we are beginning to see why God put us in this downtown Troy storefront. Although we haven't seen a big rush of patrons, we are seeing some regulars come in. There have been many people walking by, looking in the window, and asking for menues to take back to their work place. At the same time we are getting to know some of the neighboring business owners in this section of Troy's downtown business/arts district; including a young man, who owns a vegetarian eatery. Then there is his mother who is helping him in his buisness venture. God has opened the door for spiritual conversations with this young man and his mom. He describes himself as a spiritual, non-church going person who believes in Jesus, yet has no interest in religion. He is open to discussing spiritual matters and I believe God has a plan for this young man that is waiting to be unveiled. His mom grew up in church and simply lost interest over the years as she was busy raising her children.

There is a lady who lives in one of the apartments above our storefront whom we have gotten to know (read one of my previous posts, "Mary and a bottle of water.") We are getting to know quite a few of the city dwellers who live in the apartments above us. The Pod is situated on the ground level of a large building structure that is four stories high and takes up half a city block. There are seven small businesses; three restaurant/eateries, a hair salon, an income tax service, a corner grocery/newstand and a food pantry, which is operated by nearby Victorious Life Christian Church. Above these storefronts are many apartments (three stories worth).

The conversations have begun at the Pod. We are meeting people, making friends and learning how to share life together. All of this is continuous to the church planting vision God has given me. The CORE Church of Troy is a city-wide church planting initiative. The Pod will become our second location for church, as we seek to be a reproducing local church. We are now offering book discussions (currently working on developing a small group utilizing a book and video series by Erwin McManus). We have begun hosting a Tuesday evening discussion group, "Growing up Catholic." The idea of having church at The Pod has also surfaced. Although we can only accomodate 20-25 comfortably, this will be an intimate setting to gather for teaching, fellowship, breaking bread and prayer, as we seek to make Christ known in the heart of the city.

Our North Central fellowship is continuing to grow as we reach out to the surrounding inner-city community.

Please pray for the CORE Church of Troy as we continue in the mission of making Christ known in city of Troy, New York