Membership is important to the Church and to you; though you won’t find the word ‘Membership’ in the scriptures, you will most certainly find the concept of commitment to a local church. One such place is in Philippians 1:4-5 where Paul writes: ‘In all my prayers for all of you, I always pray with joy 5 because of your partnership in the gospel…’ Paul knew that it was the commitment of the believers in the local Church that helped it to carry out God’s will.
Your commitment to Greeley Wesleyan church helps provide the stability a church needs to step boldly into what God is calling us to accomplish today. Investing yoru time, tithe, and talent in the local church enables you to experience the blessing of being used of the Lord to make a difference in our church, community, and the world. Becoming a member of a local church is a defining moment in your Christ followership. It is a statement that you take your commitment to Christ seriously enough to make a commitment to Christ’s church in a local place. Membership is making a commitment and communicating it in a public way. Your membership also allows the opportunity to help make key decisions affecting the church’s future. In a world where membership in almost every group is falling, you can help the church be the one place where it is increasing.
Watch the bulletin for information on the next Membership Class
The sacrament of baptism represents both the individual, inward commitment to a personal relationship with Jesus and the corporate, outward sign of being connected to a local community of Christ followers—the local church. Whether you’re seeking a greater understanding of Greeley Wesleyan’s position on baptism or you’re interested in participating in Baptism at Greeley Wesleyan in the future, you can learn more by exploring the topics below. Scriptural teaching on Baptism may be summarized as follows:
1. Baptism is an act of obedience to the command of Christ, fulfilled by individuals who have submitted themselves to His sovereignty.
2. Baptism symbolizes the spiritual cleansing through divine forgiveness and the newness of life believers experience by virtue of their identification with Christ in His death and resurrection.
3. Baptism provides an opportunity for believers to make a formal profession of their faith before the church.
4. As a biblical rite of initiation into the body of Christ, the Baptism of a believer may be considered a prerequisite for becoming a member of the church.
While recognizing the right for other churches to practice infant Baptism if it conforms to their theology, the congregation of Greeley Wesleyan Church understands Scripture to teach that only professing believers qualify for Baptism. Although the old covenant practice of infant circumcision is sometimes given as a rationale for infant Baptism, the biblical definition of the functions of circumcision and Baptism shows that those two institutions fulfilled different purposes in their respective covenants. The equation is never made in the Bible between the circumcision of male infants in the old covenant, and the Baptism of born-again believers, much less of infants, in the new covenant. However, Greeley Wesleyan Church encourages Christian parents to present their children for the ceremony of dedication, whereby God’s blessing is formally invoked upon the children, and the parents publicly commit themselves to raise their children in accordance with the teachings of Scripture.
Because the symbolism of Baptism requires a more adult level of cognitive and developmental readiness, the leadership requires that children be at least 9 years old and able to articulate their faith to be baptized at Greeley Wesleyan Church. Proverbs 20:25 issues a significant caution against the danger of making a vow before adequate knowledge, forethought, and reflection have been given in an effort to prevent young people from making a premature commitment they may not fully understand, this minimum age has been established. If you were baptized as a child, it was the intent of your parents that you would one day be a follower of Christ. Your Baptism as an adult can be viewed as the fulfillment of your parents’ wishes. It in no way repudiates the Baptism you received as a child.
Baptism recognizes and celebrates the redemptive life change that is continually occurring within our church. The leadership of GWC encourages new believers and believers who have not yet participated in adult Baptism to be baptized by immersion. The leaders’ position is that Baptism by immersion paints the truest picture of dying to sin and arising to Christ in new life. While we strongly encourage immersion Baptism, we do recognize that some individuals may request Baptism by the sprinkling of water rather than full immersion, either because of a strong personal preference or based on a compelling physical reason or disability. In these cases, we ask that a brief explanation be given during the application process.
If you are a teen or adult interested in being baptized, follow these steps:
1. Contact Lynn, email@example.com, or call 970-330-3600 to be added to the list for the next baptism class.
2. At that class, you will learn the significance of being baptized and have an opportunity to have any questions answered.
3. Baptisms usually take place in the Sunday services following the baptism class, but the date and time will be confirmed at the class.
If your child has expressed interest in being baptized, follow these steps:
1. Contact Mindy, firstname.lastname@example.org, or call 970-330-3600 ext. 115 to be added to the baptism list for the next scheduled baptism.
2. Attend the Kid’s Baptism class with at least one of your parents. During this class kids will be reminded about what it means to be baptized, express when they became a Christ follower and work through questions with their parents to help them articulate their faith. There will be time allow for questions and if children are not deemed ready for baptism, they will be encouraged to wait until they are more mature.
3. Details of Baptism will be discussed during the baptism class described above.
4. Kids Baptisms will take place at the beginning of the adult worship services to provide an opportunity for the entire GWC family to celebrate this very important faith milestone.
We will be doing baptisms on August 7, 2016.
Parents partnering with God as they raise their children
Greeley Wesleyan Church believes children are a gift from God, and we are very excited that you are investigating child dedication. Child dedication is a public commitment you make before God, your church, and your family. The dedication service provides you, the parent(s), an opportunity to express publically your desire to lead and spiritually nurture your child in cooperation with the Holy Spirit, so your child will develop a desire to love God and love others. You will be required to attend an informational meeting before the dedication service. Listed below are frequently asked questions about child dedication. Take time to review them to find answers to any questions you may have that can be clarified at the dedication meeting. If you are interested in having your child dedicated, contact email@example.com or call (970) 330-3600 and you will be sent an information packet.
Watch the bulletin for details on the next dedication.