Our Leadership Council (deacons and pastors) have been kicking around the idea of a name change for our church. The circumstances of founding our church were so unique that we didn’t really give the name a great deal of thought at first. Since we were so blessed to have so much in place for us, due to our partnership with Cedar Park, we were able to go from idea to implementation in just a few short months. Who had time to think about a name?
Now in our sixth year of existence, The Chapel at Cedar Park wonders if the name of our church should be a bit more than the name of the building in which we worship.
Every so often you hear about parents who wait a while to name their children. The rationale is simple: they want to get to know the kid before affixing a moniker. In like manner, our church has grown up and we have gotten to know it… maybe it is time for a better name.
As we’ve been thinking about characteristics that might be reflected in a name, several things have come up in conversation: warm hospitality and fellowship; appreciation for tradition; reverence for scripture and value for biblical, even exegetical, preaching; and commitment to God’s mission to save people in our families, communities, and around the world.
We’ve even talked about recent trends that produce clever names for churches… names that sometimes don’t even reveal that the place/organization is even a church at all. The motive seems to be a good one; this kind of approach indicates a bias for outreach. It is a good approach, but it doesn’t seem to suit us. Those who seem to find our church most helpful are specifically looking for a church.
The name that the Leadership Council keeps coming back to is Redeemer’s Fellowship. One of our deacons brought a verse of Scripture that provides a good basis for this name: God is faithful, who has called you into fellowship with his Son, Jesus Christ our Lord (1 Corinthians 1:9). He also referenced 1 John 1:3 and Hebrews 10:24,25.
We like the word Fellowship as it reflects our commitment of care to one another. Our church has distinguished itself as a warm, inviting, community in which people genuinely love each other… and even really like each other. It expresses our understanding that we are called to serve together, that God calls us to be members of one body; more than merely a gathering of persons, we are a people.
Redeemer’s seems to suit us well too. It could be that the most important part of that word is the apostrophe, that little punctuation mark that indicates that our fellowship is in the possession of our Savior. We understand that we are His… that any right standing that we have before God and creation is only because we have been redeemed by Jesus.
So these days we’re looking for feedback. Nobody feels that change is absolutely necessary; The Chapel at Cedar Park has served us well. But it could be time for change. Do you like that idea? Do you have a better idea? Should we just keep The Chapel as is? Let us know what you think.