Some churches have a clear idea of the audience they are trying to reach while most churches simply take who they get. We have been asked this question several times and I wanted to share a few thoughts about the intended audience of Hope Community.
First Focus: In terms of people, the first focus of a church plant are mature followers of Christ. These men and women will play an integral role in creating the DNA of Hope Community. These early adopters are of different ages and are wired uniquely yet they have a clear focus of helping lead the church.
A Major Focus: There are thousands of people in Wilmington, NC who would call themselves Christians yet are not connected to a community of faith. Some of these people are frustrated and skeptical of the church institution. Others have become too busy and some are just waiting to be invited and cared for. Who are these people? They are your neighbors, cousins, coworkers and acquaintances.
What We Won’t Do: In many cities, people rotate from church to church as leadership changes. Some churches call this church growth and I call it sheep shifting. Committed members of other churches are not the target audience of Hope Community. We cannot keep people from leaving their church, but we can encourage them to sit down with their pastor and have a clear and truthful conversation.
In short, we will love, serve and disciple whoever God puts in our path. Having said that, we care deeply for those who have lost or never experienced hope in Jesus Christ.