Immediately after obtaining the Dinner Church Booklets distributed at our first D zone organizational meeting in August, we at Arenac Christ UMC encouraged all small groups and our adult Sunday School class to begin studying the book together. By October we launched a small church adapted version of dinner church that we believed best fit our context. A small leadership team met weekly to critique each session to improve upon our efforts of hospitality and truly listening to people. One of our main goals was to eliminate the language and climate of insider vs outsider and to present Jesus as Savior to all people at all places without a need for religious traditional understandings and practices.
We are now four months into a “Dinner Church” adaptation that meets every Sunday evening at 5:30 p.m. in our one room church’s dining/fellowship area. The last two months we have been averaging 15 persons who regularly attend. That may not seem significant, however this time of year at our “regular” traditional worship service we may only average 35 to 40 people. The most amazing significance is that we just celebrated 2 Baptisms, that of an adult and a youth who came to us through dinner church. And this week a second adult has asked to join the church and be baptized; who again found our open doors first at dinner church. We at Arenac Christ UMC in Au Gres extend an invitation to anyone who is interested to stop by and have dinner on us. You need not pre-register or sign-up ahead of time. We are always ready to set another plate or more and we’ll leave “The Light” on.
Grace and Peace,
Pastor Dave Wichert and the leadership team