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A Church Discerning Its Time and Place

Tim and Côté Soerens live in one of the most “secular” cities in the US, Seattle Washington.  We put secular in quotes because we recognize that the earth is the Lord’s and everything in it, and God’s presence in places that appear devoid of divine influence. But Seattle at large represents one of the least religious cities of major cities in the U.S. according to Pew research. Nevertheless, Tim and Côté are finding alternative ways to connect with the restorative and generative heart of the Gospel with the South Park community in Seattle. Tim is helping to start South Park neighborhood church, and he is a co-founding owner of Resistencia coffee, as well as the South Park idea Lab. Côté is a planter and Innovator. As a neighborhood pastor, she has focused on discerning God’s dreams for the South Park community since 2014. This journey led her to see the neighborhood as an endless source of inspiration for community-based projects and community enterprises such as Resistencia Coffee, the urban fresh food collective, El Mercadito Farmer’s market, South Park arts and culture collective, and South Park neighborhood Christian church. All of this means that as followers of Jesus, they discerned that that kingdom work – the pursuit of shalom in the community as the church – meant utilizing entrepreneurship, civic engagement, food market, co-working space, real estate, and coffee. We in the CCT have been reading Tim’s books for years now (The New Parish and Everywhere You Look: Discovering the Church Right Where You Are, both IVP) as have many who are involved in church planting, and especially those who want to take their communities seriously.

Tim and Coté Soerens recently addressed these issues and their story in a webinar presented as part of the CCT’s New Skills for a New Era convenings, generously funded by Lilly Endowment Inc. Click on the link to access the recording of this webinar free of charge.

Côté Sorens will present the webinar in Spanish on May 21.

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