We are a small group of Christians who live in and around Harrisonburg, Virginia. We meet in one of our homes each Sunday at 4 pm for our regular time of worship (we like to sing!), and for prayer, Bible study and a carry-in meal.
As far as beliefs are concerned, we affirm the ancient creeds of
the church and the core beliefs of the sixteenth century Anabaptist wing
of Reformation. Like them, we stress voluntary believers baptism as a
pledge of our covenant to follow the teachings of Christ to the best of
our ability. Each member renews the following covenant each year on
Pentecost Sunday, as follows:
"I support the goals, vision and faith of Family of Hope, will
attend weekly services as regularly as I am able, and will use my gifts
and offer my encouragement to this church family to the best of my
ability. I invite other members to support me--and to confront me as
needed--in being faithful to this commitment."
While we see ourselves first of all as members of God's worldwide
family, we are linked with the Mennonite family of churches in seeking
to follow Christ's example of living a life of simplicity, generosity
and nonviolence. Our giving helps support that denomination's mission,
relief, education and publishing efforts.
Since we have no paid staff, have few operating expenses, and do
not own or rent any real estate, we are able to use almost all of our
$18,000 congregational budget each year for charity and for mission
outreach as decided on by our members. A four member leadership team
meets monthly to plan for our services, but most major church decisions
are made by the whole group. We have no other committees or boards.
Since 1987, our aim has been to experience church in its simplest,
most basic form, as a group of people gathering each week to worship
and scattering each week to serve.
Harvey Yoder, pastor