God has been working in Church at Charlotte. In our Annual Report, which mailed out to members and attenders earlier this month, we explored some of the things He has done during our 2015-2016 fiscal year. Join us on August 27/28 for our annual Vision and Voting Weekend to hear from our leaders about our focus for the coming fiscal year, beginning September 1. Voting members can approve the proposed budget and elder candidates online.
Following our commitment in 2014-2015 to listen and learn about the city of Charlotte and its needs, God led us to a ministry of intervention and prevention through investing in the social, emotional, and spiritual lives of vulnerable children in our city.
Over 40 members and attenders of Church at Charlotte are serving as tutors
for children in our city.
One way we do this is by supporting education through tutoring. Volunteer tutors assist students to bridge their learning gap and serve as a loving, consistent adult in their lives who believes in them. A second way we serve is by supporting the men and women on the frontlines—the school staff. We’ve encouraged staff through appreciation meals, goody bags, gift cards, and classroom supplies.
Through a partnership with New Charlotte Church, we are supporting two schools impacted by poverty. In December, we provided every student at our adopted school, Idlewild Elementary, a brand new coat, as New Charlotte did the same for Greenway Park Elementary.
1,000 students at Idlewild Elementary School received new coats through Project Coats.
In addition to these, we have expanded upon our already-established ministries to children in a low-income community near our church. We’ve held children’s activities, community events, summer camp, photography and art camps, women’s Bible study, sports ministry, and a homework center.
Matthews Campus Launch
In September 2015, Church at Charlotte started our first multi-site campus in Matthews with a launch team from the SouthPark campus. Within just a few months, attendance had grown enough to merit the addition of a second service on Sundays in December. The Matthews campus has had the opportunity to reach out to their neighbors and invite them to be part of this community of believers that is stirred by Scripture, struggles well with life, and serves others.
120 adults were part of the Matthews campus launch team. Now, including children, the average weekly attendance is 330.
Matthews Campus Community Groups
One of the primary ways that adults at the Matthews campus seek to live out the church’s mission is through Community Groups. These groups meet in homes, coffee shops, or on a lunch break, but their aim is simple: to flesh out our church’s mission statement in small groups of people. Community Groups launched in October of 2015 and there is already a waiting list of people who wish to be placed in new groups this coming fall.
145 adults participated in 14 small groups in 2015-2016. Our goal is to add at least 5 new groups this fall, with 80% of our congregation in a group.
Support Care Ministries
At the SouthPark campus this year, we have created more pathways for people to have a safe community to navigate difficult issues and circumstances. In addition to DivorceCare, GriefShare, and Financial Peace University, which have been going on for a few years now, in 2015, we added DivorceCare for Kids, for elementary children who have experienced parents’ divorce. Early in 2016, Caring for Aging Adults, a group for caregivers, began meeting monthly. In May 2016, we hosted a Mental Health Panel with professionals in the field and individuals impacted by mental health issues. This led to the launch of a Mental Health Family Grace Group, which will begin regular weekly meetings this fall.
At least 150 adults have been part of a support care ministry group during the past year. Some groups meet continually and some go through a set program over a certain number of weeks.
SouthPark Student Ministries
Our SouthPark Student Ministries went through a lot of change this year, and we have been grateful for the leadership of Seth Dunham, our Student Ministries Pastor, and Dakota Vaughan, our Student Ministries Specialist. In this new position, Dakota has built good relationships with the young women in our ministry and is instrumental in planning trips and events.