For the past 9 months I've been going to Imago Dei Community Church. Literally the first week I arrived in Portland, I was invited to visit a home community group... and the rest is history. Imago has been a huge reason that Portland has felt so warm and inviting. The supportive community and meaningful relationships that have developed since February played a big part in why I decided to stay in Portland.
Imago Dei offers classes through their School of Theology... "In a culture packed with differing worldviews, Imago Dei’s School of Theology exists to help people connect the guiding resources of Scripture (that is, theology) with everyday life."
Today I took the Church & Gospel course, the class required to become a member of Imago. Kevin Rogers, one of the church pastors, led the group through Imago's foundation and formation, core values, mission, structure, and the church's position on certain issues. It was a great overview of why the church exists and where I fit into their mission.
Imago Dei (which means "image of God") is different from the churches I grew up in and attended in college, but it is a strong body with a clear vision and a heart that reaches beyond themselves. "If loving community is core to God’s nature, and if we are made in God’s image, then loving community is core to our nature too. What we call Church, then, is nothing less than God’s own community extended to each of us and shared among all of us. What we call the gospel, in turn, is nothing less than God’s invitation to all peoples to commune with Him and with each other in His eternal love."
DIY for Advent Conspiracy
Today, Imago also had a Do-It-Yourself fair. Imago started the Advent Conspiracy movement last year in order to refocus people's minds and hearts about what Christmas is really about. So the DIY fair gave people creative ideas for meaningful gifts to give this holiday season. It was really fun to walk around and collect how-to sheets for knitting, cooking, and sewing projects.
This little guy (probably about 9 years old) was teaching people how to make jewelry - so cute!