commons |ˈkämənz| pl. noun
1.resources belonging to or affecting the whole of a community.
As a Christian community that strives to live, play and help in the urban neighbourhoods of Calgary, we have chosen the name Commons Church to indicate our commitment to making the Kingdom of God tangible in our space.
We believe God is invested in the renewal of all things therefore we want to live the "Good News" by being part of the rhythms of our city as good neighbours, good friends, and good citizens in the common life of Kensington.
Welcome to year two at Commons Church. We're still pretty new, but we're growing quickly and we're working to make space for everyone. We launched our new community in September 2014 out of the roots of the Evangelical Covenant Church in Calgary and the excitement of a new church plant here in the city. We've been overwhelmed by the grace God has given us. This year as we continue to listen to God we are beginning to imagine what the launch of a second Commons Church in the city might look like.
Currently we have two identical services at 11AM and 7PM
and starting September 13, 2015 we'll have a third service at 915AM.
We recognize a need to rediscover the beautiful, dangerous, compelling idea that a group of people surrendered to Christ as Lord, and living in community together, really can transform society. God does not want to save us from the world, but rather calls us into his world where the lonely are invited into family and the isolated brought into community.
This is why the Christian life is not a do-it-yourself project. We do not become ourselves by ourselves. Wholeness is a cooperative venture, and Christian community is a web of supportive relationships that help make wholeness possible. What begins through a living relationship with Christ continues through the living and breathing connectivity of spiritual community.
Grace can mean a multitude of things: hospitality, listening, serving, announcing the Kingdom, or simply pointing out where Jesus is present in our neighbourhoods— but it starts with the confidence that God is doing something in our place.
Coffee and Conversation
Church is more than sermons and information, it breathes in conversations over coffee as we invite each other into our lives. This is why we make space for conversation both in our worship gatherings and in our schedules throughout the week. Our gatherings are not meant to be a show or a monologue, but rather an interactive experience- a dialogue. Join in, share what you have and take a piece of what others around you are offering.
So come have a coffee on us.
Dinner Party Network
There is a sacred place in the Jesus movement for the 'stuff’ that happens around a dinner table. It flows from the way Jesus lived and the practice of communion, itself. It’s also the setting in which existing relationships are enriched and new ones begin.
Our dinner party network is simple: a chance to have a dinner and conversation with someone new from the community. 6-8 people in someone’s house doing the very thing Jesus asked them to do in remembrance of him.
Sundays are a great time for us all to come together and learn. But if we leave it at that, we’re missing out on a lot.
That’s where community events pick up. From weekly Home Churches, to monthly Women’s Brunches, to one off events like hiking trips and book clubs, there are events happening in and around the church all the time.
All of the details here.
Christian belief is essentially about who to trust. It involves what one thinks to be true, but it is ultimately about belief engaged and trust depended on—a vibrant relationship with our creator.
Therefore, we believe that to truly root ourselves in the scriptures we must actively engage in the ongoing dialogue of faith. For us, treating the Bible with dignity means doing the rigorous theological work of bringing the scriptures into conversation with our time and place.
Sundays are a great time for us all to come together and learn. But if we leave it at that, we’re missing out on a lot. Home Churches meet throughout the city to pick up where Sunday leaves off so that we can gather to ask questions, debate answers and metabolize what we’ve learned from each other. It’s where we care for one another and discover the unique ways God has created us to serve in our communities.
Home Churches are equipped with discussion notes from each Sunday to dive deeper into the teaching from Sunday
The Journal Project
Every year we produce a journal for the community that signals our intention to be thoughtful about what we do together, to take notice of what happens inside of us, to preserve what we hear and think. The Journal has information about who we are as a community and resources for those looking to connect. It also lays out our teaching schedule for the entire coming year with space to takes notes each weekend.
We also make all of our resources available to other churches completely free and this year we have three other communities that are using our journal content.
Pick yours up for free at the book table on Sunday.
A backstory is the history behind the story; the past behind the settings, characters, and events of a main story. "Backstory" at Commons takes us into the history of Christianity and the biblical texts to help us understand why and how we exist today. If you are new to the Christian story or just looking to ground yourself in the backstory considering joining us for this four week course.
We will discus, the genres and themes of the Hebrew and New Testament Scriptures, the development of the canon and modern biblical texts, and finally some basic theology focusing on views of the atonement.
Backstory will run twice this year. All the details here.
In Jesus, we see God most clearly. There is no deus absconditus (hidden God) that sits behind the incarnated word that walked through ancient Palestine. Therefore we embrace the peaceable way of Jesus as the stating point for our theological reflection.
This commitment to peace is not passive however, it is an active posture of peace making in our thoughts and prayers— as well as our relationships and neighbourhoods. This is grace most evident. Our careers and creativity, our families and our friendships, our resources and our talents—all of these are part of how we join God in his renewal project. We believe that our work, our purchases, our politics and our conversations, must breathe with the peace of God. Discipleship cannot confine itself to right thinking but instead must practice the imitation of Christ.
This is why service is more than an add-on. Serving is a fundamental expression of what it means to follow Jesus as we seek to be good neighbours in our homes, neighbourhoods and world.
It takes all kinds of people to make church happen. From the Sunday production, including sound and tech, to the coffee volunteers that make sure we’re all awake and caffeinated, to the people who volunteer to teach our kids and keep them safe, church is created live, every Sunday, by volunteers.
We are currently looking for more volunteers to help serve in our kids programming and as baristas. Training provided. There’s a place for you.
There is a lot of good happening here in Calgary. That's why we want to work to facilitate connections between community volunteers with worthy non-profit organizations in Calgary. The intent is to partner in ways that lead to long term, measurable and sustainable social good. Opportunities emerge throughout the year but we serve monthly at the Mustard Seed and Drop-In Centre and partner with Inn From the Cold regularly. Requires nothing but a willingness to serve.
We're as passionate about justice globally as we are in seeing God work here in Calgary. Today we partner with several best-in-class inspiring organizations that are at the forefront of international work. Hands at Work in Africa gives us opportunities to work directly with developing communities to build long term partnership working towards local sustainable solutions. IJM provides us a chance to support systemic justice work in the legal, citizenship and economic arena.
We are in the early stages of planning a team that will travel back to the Kalende community of Zambia in summer 2016. Let us know if you’d like more information.
Providing emergency shelter, support and programs to homeless children, their families and others in need, with the goal of building healthy, stable families and ending homelessness.
Adults experiencing poverty and homelessness have their basic needs met, are growing in hope and are supported toward sustainable life change and integration into the broader community.
The needs of people who are homeless or at risk are met in a respectful, comprehensive and safe way.
A Christian non-profit organisation working in vulnerable communities across sub-Saharan Africa where HIV/AIDS, poverty and numbers of orphans are highest and support structures are very low.
A global organization protecting the poor from violence throughout the developing world. IJM partners with local authorities to rescue victims of violence, bring criminals to justice, restore survivors, and strengthen justice systems.