Church Visits

Visiting Churches: Chris Thompson (stainedglass) is an amateur Alaskan biblical scholar and student of religion, especially as it relates to popular culture. He regularly attends national and regional American Academy of Religion and Society of Biblical Literature events to interact with and learn from worldwide religion scholars. Through unannounced mystery visits to churches in Anchorage and South-Central Alaska, he observes how guests (visitors) are treated during this initial church visit. Research indicates guests first visit perceptions affects further spiritual growth and religious attitudes as they search for a church home. Chris' church visits focus primarily on Christian churches. This blog contains accounts of those visits, and related posts about religion in culture. Chris looks for the following in his visits:

•Genuine welcome, true Christian hospitality

•Friendliness and warmth

•Effective, well-delivered, Bible-based, main teaching

•Music deepening the worship, not just entertainment

Google map of churches Chris Thompson has visited.

Follow my Church Visits posts on Twitter

Chris Thompson’s email: churchvisits@gmail.com

Significant 2013 Church Visits Posts

Top Ten Issues Local Churches Must Address in 2013

Ten Things Churches Did That Blew Me Away In 2012

Guest Post: Why Theology Matters to Musicians

Church Visits: Easter asks for our joy, not our spending - 4/19/2014 1:17 pm

Church Visits: What do millennials look for in worship? - 4/11/2014 10:29 pm

Church Visits: Visits to 2 churches leave 2 different impressions - 4/4/2014 9:19 pm

Church Visits: Research underscores deeper church attendance issues - 3/28/2014 9:19 pm

Church Visits: It's time we get back to observing the Sabbath - 3/21/2014 8:30 pm

Church Visits: Look deeper into Lent than just 'give-ups' - 3/14/2014 10:37 pm

First Congregational Church Revisit: Not Bad - Room to Grow - 3/14/2014 11:23 am

Church Visits: Pastors mark start of Lent by taking ashes to the people - 3/8/2014 10:56 am

Bean's Cafe - Helping in Love By Serving Thanksgiving Meals

Thanksgiving Day, Bean's Cafe will continue to serve meals with love and warm attitudes to demonstrate to the less fortunate that they are loved by the Anchorage community.

Lisa Sauder, Bean's Executive Director offered some insight on the extent of their meal activities on Thanksgiving. They plan to serve approximately 1,200 meals. Because they are excellent financial stewards of community donations, and other financial resources, they are able to provide dinners where the average meal cost, for food alone, averages under $3.00.

Ms. Sauder further noted "We are so grateful for the amazing support we receive each year for Thanksgiving and the Holidays. We see such an increase in giving this time of year. It really helps so much."

"Bean's meal is served at noon", she said, "and Brother Francis Shelter will serve dinner on Thanksgiving for those clients who are residing there. We are helping them with their dinner by donating the vegetables to be served. Providence provides all other food for the meal."

From my volunteer work at Bean's, I know Bean's clients enjoy a tasty, well-prepared lunch, made and served with love by volunteers. I can attest to the rewards of volunteerism at Bean's. They are especially grateful for monetary assistance during the winter months, as that is when their client load, and expenses, are at their highest. Rather than giving expensive gifts to each other during this time of consumer extravagance, I urge you to consider Bean's and Brother Francis Shelter during this critical time of year.

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