Vision & Mission
Vision: love God, love people, and be the church.
Our vision is to be a safe space for all people, where they can be who they truly are so that they can fully experience the love of God and His grace. We are seeking to be a place of thriving and flourishing so that the needs of the entire human person can be addressed – no matter the age, socio-economic status, race, or any other status in life. Our vision is to be a church who plants churches, never getting so large that people don’t experience meaningful caring relationships, and spreading out to reach other places in our city and region. In short, our vision is to be the Church. Thus we love the Church, the body of Christ, in all her expressions and value the unity of the Church far more than many other things that others value.
Mission: a lasting ministry presence in Columbia.
The mission of Christ Our King is to be a church with a permanent presence and footprint in our community that has the resources to minister to whole persons of every stage of life and to engage actively in serving and loving our city and our world, while planting new churches to do the same out of the bounty that God blesses us with. This means that we want to someday have a building (though we do not yet), to have multiple staff (though we do not yet), and to be a sending church (though we are not yet). It is good to have goals and a mission – to pray, work, and sacrifice for things that God might do, but has not yet done. We want you to join us in this mission!
The Church – We have a very high view of the Church. Thus we seek the growth, maturity, and unity of the Church in everything that we do.
The Richness of the Faith
At Christ Our King, we believe that the Christian faith is rich and beautiful and has something wonderful to offer every human person. We believe that our faith should be fun and engaging. We seek to be winsome and hospitable. We want to show people that God loves them and rejoices over them with singing. We throw parties. We love to eat and drink. The pastor brews beer. This is not a boring faith. If you come, bring your dancing shoes.
On the night before he suffered, Jesus prayed in the Garden of Gethsemane that the Church would one even as he and the Father are one (John 17:11, 21,22). Thus throughout the New Testament and in the early history of the Church, the unity of the Church was a core value. We believe that this unity is to be expressed in outward ways, a thing called Catholicity. Catholicity is valuing the unity of the Church so much that it changes the way we do church and the way we live our lives.
At Christ Our King, being the church (our vision) and embodying transformation and catholicity means that we place a great emphasis on the outward means of God’s grace to us. In the Scriptures we are given two of these means, rituals or ordinances, called baptism and the Lord’s Supper. In the Reformed tradition (see our beliefs) we confess that these sacraments actually do something! They aren’t just outward signs or remembrances, but through faithful participation in them, God feeds and transforms his people. For this reason we place a great emphasis on the sacraments. We love baptisms and make a big deal about them! We also love to share the bread and wine in the Lord’s Supper, so we do that every time we gather together in worship as a body.
At Christ Our King, we believe that all kinds of people of all different races, genders, socio-economic classes, and ages should worship together. This includes children, because baptized children are a part of the people of God. Children are a blessing from the Lord. He himself says that the noises little children make are praises and to “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them,” (Matt. 19:14, 21:16) Therefore children are a part of everything that we do, including worship.
At Christ Our King we believe that the church exists for the sake of the other. Therefore we value engagement and service to our city and community. We want to grow and reach people for Christ. We want to plant churches and send out all kinds of ministry leaders to do ministry here and all over the world.
The Gospel of Grace – We believe and preach the transforming power of God’s free, unmerited grace for us in his Son, Jesus.
At Christ Our King we are seeking to be a place where people’s lives can be transformed by the gospel of grace by the power of the Holy Spirit working through the means of grace: the Scriptures, the Sacraments (baptism and the Lord’s Supper), corporate worship, intimate personal relationships, and pastoral care; to become faithful Christian disciples who follow Jesus no matter the cost.
The Word of God
We place a great value on the power of God’s word to transform our lives. We believe that the Bible is God’s inspired word, inerrant and infallible in what it affirms and teaches. Thus we place a great emphasis on the reading and preaching of the word of God. Our worship is saturated with scripture. Our preaching is geared toward explaining the text, applying it to our lives, and calling us to follow Christ.
In order to communicate the gospel of grace, the power of the Holy Spirit to transform our lives, the catholicity of the church, and to celebrate the sacraments, we need to worship together! Worship is by far the most frequent and time-consuming thing that any church does together. It is also the one thing that the Church is commanded to do every week and that all Christians are commanded to take part in. Worship is the primary means that God uses to transform his people and communicate his grace. Therefore at Christ Our King we place a great emphasis on our worship, such that who we are as a church is expressed in our worship and what we hope our church to be flows out of our worship. Worship is the center and source of all that we do.
At Christ Our King we value community. We believe that each person needs safe relationships in order to grow in Christ. For this reason we do many things in our church to promote the body life, community, and growth of relationships. For this reason we will never grow to be a large church. We are committed to being small enough where each person is known by their pastors and by their fellow parishioners.
Justice Orientation – God’s love and righteousness for all people
We believe that the church should always stand for what is right. Therefore we as a church are involved in working for justice and mercy in our church and in our local community. We are working to advocate for the poor, the immigrant, the orphan, and the widow. We are working for racial reconciliation in our community. We stand against hate. We stand against violence. We work for the welfare and peace (shalom) of our city, as God commands.