ALL IN 2021 and Connect Card

You Matter and You Are Loved!

ALL IN 2021

Click below to fill out the quick form to partner with St. Mark Ministries in 2021.

ALL IN 2021 Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Why church partnership/membership?
A: The Bible uses several metaphors to describe the relationship between believers and their local church body: members of the family of God, citizens of the kingdom of heaven, living stones within the temple of God, members of the body of Christ, and partners in Gospel ministry, to name a few. All of these biblical images highlight the fact that Christians are to relate to one another in a way that is highly committed and deeply interdependent. One of the ways we express this type of relationship in our culture is through partnership. Partnership is a way of saying, “I am declaring myself to be formally committed to this local church community.”
Q: Is church partnership/membership biblical?
A: If you search the New Testament for evidence of a formal church membership process, you won’t find it. The reason for this is simple – they didn’t need it. Pretty much anyone who showed up was considered a “committed member” for several reasons: (1) Persecution – The New Testament makes it clear that many of the churches operated in hostile environments. This reality naturally weeded out the uncommitted; (2) Scarcity – There simply weren’t as many churches around back then as there are in modern-day America. Today, with dozens of churches in most cities, it’s easy to church “hop and shop” for months, if not years, leading to uncertainty and confusion regarding who is and who isn’t committed to a local church; and (3) Mobility – We live in the most transient society in the history of the world. People move for any number of reasons. In biblical times, people moved around far less, sometimes spending a lifetime in one town or village, thereby making it much easier to know who was – or at least should have been – at church. For all these reasons church membership is a practical response to the very real challenges of our time and culture. It allows the church community to know who’s “ALL IN” so we can focus our time and energy on living as a biblical community, rather than wasting it on trying to figure out who’s in the community in the first place.
Q: What if I move?

A: Just let us know and, though we’ll be sad to see you go, we’ll gladly bless you. We hope however, that you will not have made such a decision lightly, but rather, with much prayer, thought, and godly counsel from your church community. In a day and age where the local church is treated more like a local Starbucks than a family – “Don’t worry, there’ll be one where I’m moving” – we’re asking partners to be countercultural by taking Jesus’ description of the church as a family seriously. Doctrine mattered to Jesus; it needs to matter to us.  If you do end up moving, our hope is that you will become a partner of another Jesus-loving, Gospel-centered, Bible-teaching church in your new city!  Call us, we would love to help you find one.

Q: How long will I be considered a partner?

A: We will ask all partners to renew their St. Mark partnership commitment annually.

Q: What are the benefits of being a partner?

A: As a self-declared member of our faith family, other members have a responsibility to care for you, encourage you, and do all that they can to help you become who God has called you to be, as well as vice versa. In addition, there are certain privileges granted specifically to partners, such as priority in counseling and visitation, leadership opportunities, wedding officiation by church pastors, certain service positions and access to our limited benevolence funds.

Q: Is partnership required for serving and leadership in the church?

A: We require partnership for all leadership positions and many service positions. Some service positions may not require partnership; contact our office for details.

Q: What if I choose not to renew my partnership or become a partner?

A: Of course, you are still welcome at St. Mark! We will not, and cannot, force anyone to become a partner. All we can do is present our reasons for partnership and encourage every follower of Jesus to gladly embrace becoming an active partner in St. Mark ministries.

Q: Is church partnership for super Christians?

A: No way! Church partnership is for all people who profess Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior, whether you just recently became a Christian or if you’ve been walking with Jesus your entire life.

Q: Can I become a partner at any time?

A: Yes. We will have set times every month (e.g. third Saturday of the month) when we will hold a Partnership Class (Starting Point) and give people the opportunity to become partners.

Q: If I want to become a partner but my spouse doesn't, what do I do?

A: We encourage both husband and wife to join together but if your spouse is not interested in partnership at St. Mark, we would encourage you to be active in yours!

Q: What if I left a church under discipline but I want to become a partner at St. Mark?

A: We will handle these situations on a case-by-case basis. While we desire that anyone who wants to become a partner at St. Mark will be able to, we also want to take into account the decisions of other churches. Talk to a pastor about your specific circumstances.

Q: What happens if I'm still "on the books" but don't renew my membership at St. Mark?

A: You are still welcome at St. Mark! We will not force anyone to continue to be a partner. People who had in the past been on our membership list but did not renew their partnership for whatever reason, will be considered evangelism prospects.  We will attempt to contact them and present our reasons for partnership and encourage them to become active partners in St. Mark Ministries.

Q: If I'm still exploring the person and work of Jesus, can I become a partner?

A: We’re excited you’re here at St. Mark! However, church partnership is specifically for those who trust in Jesus Christ as their Savior and are committed to his inerrant Word. So, for now let’s wait. Take your time to ask questions, get connected in our faith community and continue to explore the amazing claims of Jesus Christ. As the Holy Spirit continues to work on your heart with his Word, we can revisit partnership.

Connect Card

The Connect Card takes less than a minute of your time. It helps us know how to better serve you. Take that next step and see how God responds!

Our Next Steps Coordinator, Sarah Hermann will then follow up with you. Or email her directly at [email protected]

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