Seeking the Beloved Community Through the Liberating Love of Jesus (1 John 4:7-8, Luke 4:18-19, Matt 6:33)
Hospitality: To welcome the stranger–the outsider–the misunderstood–the lonely—the wounded. We strive to be radically inclusive and affirming of all people–especially God’s children who have been marginalized or oppressed.
Faith: To grow it, share it, practice it– live it. Through cultivating intentional habits of faith, we help one another to follow Christ Jesus and become more like him– people of bold and faith-full love.
Justice: That which is equitable, right, fair and good. We believe this is what God calls us to in scripture both as individuals and as a community—to do justice, become just people, and work for a more just and loving world.
Madrona Grace Cultural Affirmations
- We focus on the truth embodied in Christ Jesus.
We believe that Jesus is the best interpreter of scripture, the ONLY true and just judge, the only Truth we proclaim unambiguously in life and in death. Christ, and Christ crucified is our gospel. Together we learn how to live with the ambiguity of not having all the answers to the rest of life’s challenging questions.
- We are a both-and church.
We refuse to choose between either spreading the good news through evangelism or promoting social justice–we do both! We stand against segregation of all kinds that would have us choose between serving people of different racial, sexual, or socio-economic backgrounds. We believe God calls us to both faith AND works, conviction AND doubt, humility AND boldness, witness and service.
- We invite, we don’t coerce.
We aim to be a congregation where people can claim their freedom in Christ to “come and see” or go as they feel led. Even in bible study, we utilize a process called “mutual invitation” that allows for people to engage with one another and with the scripture on their own terms.
- We practice mutual forbearance.
Our tradition is one in which we recognize that “there are truths and forms to which people of good characters and principles may differ.” And we maintain that diversity is good! Therefore we can often agree to disagree, trusting that “Christ alone is Lord of the conscience.”
- We take the bible seriously in its historical and literary context.
Scripture witnesses of itself that it is “inspired and useful for teaching, rebuke, correction, and training in righteousness” (2 Timothy 3:16). To make good use of these inspired writings, however, we must be continually “transformed by the renewal of our minds” (Romans 12:12).
- We believe prayer changes things, especially us.
Jesus taught us to keep asking, keep knocking, and to trust that while God won’t always give us everything that we want, we will receive everything that we need when we pray with the mind of Christ. Sometimes we cry out with the psalmist “How Long, O Lord”, and we find ourselves hanging with Jesus, who also had a moment when he cried out to God, saying “Why have you forsaken me?” But he wasn’t forsaken–Christ is risen!
- We see constant change as normal and healthy.
We believe God is in the process of making all things new, and we get to be a part of this mission. Jesus told us to come and follow and pray for God’s kingdom to come. To this end we are a church “Reformed and always being reformed according to the Word of God and the movement of the Holy Spirit.”
- We take risks for the sake of our mission.
“Seek FIRST the Kingdom of God” Jesus said to us, “and all these other things will be given to you as well” (Matt 6:33). We may try something and it doesn’t work, and that’s okay. We learn from failure, and try again.
- We maintain healthy boundaries.
Jesus’ ministry had limits. He didn’t try to reach everyone in three years, and he did not tolerate bad behavior among his disciples. We also recognize that we can’t be all things to all people, and that we should avoid putting people in situations that are more than they can bear.
- We communicate directly, respectfully, and openly.
Jesus talked about money and power openly–so can we. Jesus confronted sin and injustice directly–so can we. We aim to do our ministry out in the open, with careful RESPECT.
As a More Light congregation, we also go a step further by including our own affirmation of faith based on the Ten Affirmations for (LGBT) Spirituality (also not original to us):
- We believe in God’s creative, embracing love for all that is.
- We believe that God does not make junk.
- We believe that God’s Wisdom may be known in a variety of ways.
- We believe God wants us to be reliable and trustworthy.
- We believe that God rejoices when we reveal to the world our full selves.
- We believe God made sex good.
- We believe God entwines body and spirit in all people.
- We believe God wills life long covenants.
- We believe God inspires leaders to do this.
- We believe God cries out with the persecuted.
- Their yearning for freedom is also God’s.
“This hour in history needs a dedicated circle of transformed non-comformists…The saving of our world from pending doom will come, not through the complacent adjustment of the conforming majority, but through the creative maladjustment of a nonconforming minority…Human salvation lies in the hands of the creatively maladjusted. We need today maladjusted men like Shadrach, Mesach, and Abedgnego, who, when ordered by King Nebuchadnezzar to bow before a golden image, said in unequivocal terms, “If it be so, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us…But if not…we will not serve thy gods”; like Thomas Jefferson, who in an age adjusted to slavery wrote, “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness”; like Abraham Lincoln, who had the wisdom to discern that this nation could not survive half slave and half free….Through such maladjustment an already decadent generation may be called to those things which make for peace.” –Rev Dr Martin Luther King Jr.
You can learn more about our community via the links below:
Our Leadership & Staff