This church represents the passion the Vineyard founders had to make the world more like Jesus would have it to be.
I used to do a regular series called “Sunday Journeys”. The series was primarily about things I observed while visiting churches from different traditions and the practices they had that may be helpful for others. Typically, I began with a brief description and then one or two notable things at that church. We had dropped the series because for the past few years, I have been preoccupied preaching at Moody Church almost every Sunday.
However, this past fall I took some time away from that and did a book tour where I had the privilege of speaking at several churches.
Now that the new year has begun, I have one or two Sundays a month to preach at other churches. So it’s time to return to my church visit series.
Today I want to talk about North Phoenix Vineyard Church. The Vineyard is a movement of churches most associated with John Wimber. Early on, the movement was predominantly found in the Southern California area, and the spiritual birthday of Vineyard is Mother's Day 1980. Hundreds of Vineyard churches have been planted around the world. One of those churches was planted by Brian and Thora Anderson.
What's particularly fascinating about Brian and Thora is that they were actually not preparing for vocational ministry. Rather, their focus was to be high school teachers. They met as high school teachers. I learned a bit about their journey when Donna and I went to dinner them.
When I attended North Phoenix Vineyard Church, a few things stuck out to me. First, it was a child dedication Sunday. It's always encouraging to see this many children and parents gathered together to dedicate their kids to the Lord.
Also worth noting is they had the Lord's Supper set up in the aisles. I've noticed increasingly ...