The Rev. Rod Addison holds two services each Sunday in his church's new auditorium.
Photo by Jim Blaylock
The days of setting up for Sunday services at 6:30 a.m. are over for the members of West Town Community Church.
Since the church has met at Augusta Preparatory Day School common area for 6 1/2 years, the Rev. Rod Addison and a dedicated group of volunteers began at dawn running the same wires, moving the same set of speakers and setting up the same classrooms for their Sunday service that began at 10:30 a.m., Addison said. It only took an hour or so to take it all back down.
As of the new year, the nearly 150-member congregation began holding two Sunday services on the church's first piece of owned property on North Belair Road.
"We have been setting up and tearing down for so long," Addison said. "We have some wonderfully good people who are probably about to wear slap out from that. Even though doing two services creates a need for a lot of help, it still feels different from setting up and tearing down every weekend."
The entire congregation cannot fit into the 100-person auditorium, so two Sunday services are held. Addison hopes to begin construction on a larger auditorium later this year. Despite the need for a larger building, Addison said he feels lucky to have found a piece of property that already has usable buildings.
"It is very exciting for us," Addison said. "It feels real good. It feels wonderful. I think we all have a real strong sense of, I am experiencing it, that it is like this is a place to call home for our church. It is a good piece of property for us to expand our vision on as we go forward. there is plenty of expanding room for the future."
The church is part of the casual Willow Creek Association, which focuses mainly on the unchurched. The congregation is made up of people with a variety of denominations in their background, though most have not been affiliated with a church or particular denomination in many years, Addison said. The church functions as a nondenominational church.
He created a casual friendly atmosphere in the church by making the dress casual. Addison admits he only wears a tie to church a few times a year.
"We are very casual," Addison said. "That is somewhat intentional because that is one of the issues that unchurched people tend to raise. It takes away the typical reasons from someone that says, 'I don't want to go to church' because of this or that. We try to address those in our Sunday services to where how we function, we come about it a little differently so that it is a little more comfortable environment for people that maybe have the typical mindset of what a church service is or how they have to look.
"So, the casual dress is a big part of who we are. This makes it a comfortable environment like the fellow next to you wearing a t-shirt and jeans is being who he is. There is no pretense here."
Though services began in the new building as of the new year, the church is holding its dedication Sunday. There ceremony will be short between the 9 and 10:45 a.m. services.
"We want the neighborhood and everybody to know we are here and kind of open for business so to speak," Addison said. "We are ready to minister to the neighborhood and ready for everybody."
The dedication day also kicks off a six-week series about relationships called From a Maze of Relationships to Amazing Relationships. The series focuses on communication, trust and other ways to improve all kinds of relationships. The overall principles can be applied to marriages, parent-child relationships and even friendships, Addison said.
"Since we all live in relationships one way or another, it tends to touch where we all live," Addison said.
The church is at 779 North Belair Rd., just past the Evans government complex on the right. Services begin at 9 and 10:45 a.m. and all are welcome to attend.
For more information, call the church at 855-5008.
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