GraceConnect E-News, No. 52, Week of June 16, 2014


The eNewsletter for the Fellowship of Grace Brethren Churches

Visitor Parking 

"For years we had watched some of the kids who had grown up in church not return once they had graduated high school or college,” says Chris Setser, youth pastor at Basore Road Grace Brethren Church, Dayton, Ohio (Shannon Horst, pastor). “In 2012, a couple of the kids who had recently graduated were passionate about this issue, and approached me about starting an ‘alternative’ church for disillusioned young adults.”

The new congregation, called Visitor Parking, is an alternative church that currently meets at the Basore Road church building. Setser leads the group of individuals, who are mostly young adults with an evangelical church background.

Over the summer, the young people worked as a core team to visualize a new kind of church -- for people who aren’t comfortable with church on Sunday morning, but who intrinsically know that it has value. They wanted a space where questions were welcome.

Thus, Visitor Parking was born.

The leaders of Visitor Parking try to keep the meeting times creative and flexible, sometimes meeting in restaurants or spending a large portion of the evening worshiping.

“We are sure to have a good solid Bible Study -- we’re always in the Scripture,” Setser said. “But there are nights that we’ll stray from what’s planned. If someone asks a question, sometimes we’ll dive into apologetics.”

“It’s weird to see a group of post-college kids pulling out their Bibles in a restaurant,” Setser adds.

As the small group began to act as a cohesive whole, a desire ignited within those who attended to take on more responsibility -- as a formally recognized church.

“We didn’t go in with the intent of planting a church,” explained Setser. “We were trying to meet a need. Then we realized that in all function and practically, we are a church plant.  We’re still working on how to balance functioning as a church and having a vision for outreach at the same time.

“I think the core group understands that, biblically, we have some responsibility now. I think it’s about embracing our identity. We are starting to say, ‘Hey if we want to grow, we need to take on some of the responsibilities of a church leader.’”


Tyler Kramer (pictured at right) has been named youth pastor at Marysville Grace (Marysville, Ohio, Clancy Cruise, senior pastor). Click here to learn more about him.

The examining board of the Florida District of Grace Brethren Churches has recommended that Wade Rininger be ordained by his local church as a Grace Brethren pastor.  That's him below, surrounded by the examining board. Click here to learn more.

From Around the Web

Here are a few links from Grace Brethren churches that you might find of interest…

There's still time to sign up for Momentum Youth Conference! Click here for more information.

In this month's Women of Grace e-newsletter, Janet Minnix, who is retiring as president of the organization this summer, reflects on leadership lessons she has learned. "I never dreamed when I agreed to a three-year term as president of WMC (now Women of Grace USA) that my term would end up lasting 17 years," she said. "While the world has changed much, some principles I have learned are still very relevant." Click here to read more.

Below, Scott Kantenwein shares his story of learning of God's strength and love in one of his family's greatest trials. Scott is a member of Grace Church, a Grace Brethren congregation in Wooster, Ohio (Bob Fetterhoff, pastor).

Chasing After Faith
This week's featured book

Chasing After Faith

By Mark E. Lingenfelter

Subtitled “Capturing Hope Though a Daughter’s Special Needs,” Chasing After Faith chronicles the journey of author Mark Lingenfelter and his wife, Angie, as they walked through the discovery and adjustment to a number of birth and developmental problems with their daughter, Faith.

In the introduction, Lingenfelter stresses, “This book is NOT a record of woes and hardship, and it is not a pool of self-pity or sorrow.” Instead, he says, “This is a book about the JOY found growing in the soil of suffering. It is intended to challenge the reader to consider the value of chasing after a life of faith.”

The slim 71-page paperback contains eight chapters, each teaching a spiritual principle learned through the Lingenfelters’ experience and each followed by several pages of discussion questions and exercises designed for individual study or small-group discussion.

Regularly $8.99 as an ebook, now available for FREE download for GraceConnect eNews subscribers ONLY.  Click here to select your free copy. (Available only until midnight, June 24, 2014.)

Events in the FGBC

June 27 – Grace Day at the Fort Wayne (Ind.) Children's Zoo (GCS)
June 27-July 3, 2014 – Encounter ATL (EWP)
July 17-21, 2014 – Vision2020 DC (FGBC)
June 22-27 – National Rendezvous Camp, Burr Oak State Park, Ohio (GBB)
July 22-27, 2014 – Momentum Youth Conference (CEN)
July 29-August 11 – National Timothy Adventure (GBB)
November 11-24, 2014 – Cambodia GO Team (WGUSA)

CEN – CE National
EWP – Encompass World Partners
FGBC – Fellowship of Grace Brethren Churches
GBB – Grace Brethren Boys
GCS – Grace College and Seminary 
WGUSA – Women of Grace USA

Send events for the calendar to
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