Downtown Cornerstone Blog
Nov 3
2011

November Prayer Night Date Change

News, Uncategorized

This month, our Prayer & Vision Night will occur on the third week of the month rather than the fourth due to Thanksgiving! Please join us at the Westin Building (6th & Virginia) on Thursday, November 17th @ 6:30pm, as we gather together for an evening of prayer, vision and worship. This event will occur in lieu of our normal weekly community rhythm, and will be an opportunity to go before our Father, asking Him to do what only He can do.

What will we do?

VISION: We’ll talk about where we are and where, by God’s grace, we are going.
WORSHIP: We’ll sing to the King.
PRAY: Most importantly, we’ll pray, asking God to do what only He can do.

“Pray then like this: ‘Our Father in heaven…’” (Mat 6:9)
“Pray earnestly to the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest.” (Mat 9:38)
“…that they ought always to pray and not lose heart.” (Lk 18:1)

Oct 31
2011

Don’t Forget to Fall Back!

News, Uncategorized

This Sunday, November 6th Daylight Savings will end, so don’t forget to turn your clocks back one hour earlier (if it doesn’t automatically update) so you can arrive to the Sunday gathering on time. Please take note and spread the word.

Apr 18
2011

It’s Official! Downtown Cornerstone is Acts 29

Uncategorized | by Pastor Adam Sinnett

Last week we received news that Downtown Cornerstone is officially a full-member of the Acts 29 Network. Acts 29 exists to train, resource, assess and network like-minded church planters around the world. You can read the interview with Pastor Adam HERE.

——

“Acts 29 is seeking to get behind the men who are planting churches by:

  • covenanting with them under the gospel
  • training missional leaders formally and informally
  • networking with men in different denominations and networks for the kingdom good of the city,
  • resourcing planters with the tools they need to develop in a healthy manner
  • multiplying the gospel through church-planting as a means to make disciples of all nations
  • inspiring them as Spirit-empowered leaders, united with this gospel community of Acts 29 churches, on mission together for the glory of God.


Acts 29 is not a model or a style. We have classical church plants with a preacher and a congregation, we have video-delivered sermons, we have missional community models, replants, and existing churches that want to plant churches with us. We seek to be a movement of church-planting networks – that is, decentralized and empowered networks to lead men of all different types of churches in order to make disciples of all people groups.” (HT: Acts 29 Network)

Mar 7
2011

Seeking the Social Renewal of Seattle (?)

Uncategorized | by Pastor Adam Sinnett

We want to see spiritual, social and cultural renewal take place in Seattle. But, what does that actually look like?

This is the third, and last, in a series of blogs that will answer that question.

But first, some theological context. God’s ultimate aim is his glory (Mt 6:9, cf 1 Cor 10:31). He makes his glory known through His kingdom (Mt 6:10a), which exists wherever He rules over human hearts submitted to Him by faith. His primary plan for making this invisible kingdom visible is through the Church (Mt 6:10b; Eph 3:10). The Church receives power for this work through the Gospel (Mt 6:11;13; Rom 1:16).

In other words, the glory of God is made known through the invisible kingdom being made visible through the Church, empowered by the Gospel. Therefore, seeking the spiritual, social and cultural renewal of Seattle is nothing more than making the invisible kingdom visible in every sphere of life.

What does a socially renewed Seattle look like?

Downtown Cornerstone is committed to building a great city, not just a great church. Yet, these two are not opposed. A great church, comprised of sinners saved by the sheer grace of God in Christ, will build a great city. So, practically speaking, what does it look like to socially renew Seattle? Not through imperialistic, patronizing, holier-than-thou fundamentalism; but through the faithful presence of Jesus’ followers in the city. What follows are some examples of just that. In a socially renewed Seattle:

  • There are increasing levels of forgiveness, patience and reconciliation happening between classes and races (individuals, families, neighborhoods and institutions)
  • The “elites” of Seattle are repenting of their ambivalence and, in turn, getting involved with the needs of the people and neighborhoods of the city.
  • There are hundreds of cooperative efforts between the “haves” and “have-nots” bringing revitalization throughout the city.
  • There is a significant decline in wage theft among immigrant populations (a significant issue in Seattle)
  • The practice of human trafficking in Seattle is completely eradicate
  • Strong marriages are increasingly honored without ostracizing aging singles (the fastest growing population segment in the US)
  • Hurting marriages and families are being healed.
  • There are strong, high quality, schools provided for all children of the city (e.g. no difference between south and north Seattle).
  • Child abuse is experiencing a radical decline.
  • Sex between a married man and woman is viewed as beautiful; while the sex industry is shutting down.

This work is beyond the capacity of any single church, including Downtown Cornerstone. It’s for this reason that we don’t exist to merely see our church planted, but a movement of churches planted in Seattle and beyond. We invite you to join us as we embark on this impossible task, following the God of impossibilities (Eph 3:20-21).

Feb 7
2011

Must-Reads in 2011

Uncategorized | by Pastor Adam Sinnett

Every January, without fail, the blogosphere is filled with lists and recommendations for books to read, things to do and places to go in the coming year. In order to avoid the new year blitz, I’ve waited until Febuary. There are still eleven months left in 2011, right? I regularly get asked, “What can I read to learn more about urban ministry?” There are many books on urban ministry. I propose the following list which addresses various areas important to cultivating a healthy newly forming urban church. It just so happens these correspond to what we most value.

Jesus

ESV Study Bible
Jesus Storybook Bible (kids 2+ years old)
The Rhyme Bible Storybook (kids 0-2 years old)

Gospel

The Gospel Centered Life (World Harvest)
The Prodigal God, Tim Keller

City

Theology as Big as the City, Ray Bakke
Cities of God, Rodney Stark

Church & Mission

Total Church, Tim Chester & Steve Timmis
Tangible Kingdom, Hugh Halter & Matt Smay

Renewal

Ministries of Mercy, Tim Keller
Generous Justice, Tim Keller
You Can Change, Tim Chester
Culture Making, Andy Crouch

Multiplication

Church Planting Movements, David Garrison

Jan 28
2011

“Do I Have to Move Downtown?”

Uncategorized | by Pastor Adam Sinnett

“Do I have to move downtown in order to partner with Downtown Cornerstone?” That’s a common question. The simple answer is, “No.” Our aim is to connect urban dwellers (approximately 60,000) and urban workers (approximately 250,000) to Christ. While many have moved downtown, others live anywhere from Auburn (South) to Lynnwood (North). What we all share is a common love for the city and for Jesus.

While we highly encourage you to consider moving in order to promote the faithful presence of Christ through his people in the urban core, it is not expected nor required. Whether you follow, are curious, or are skeptical of Jesus – and love Seattle – we invite you to join us in community or Sundays at 10:00AM downtown. Who knows? Maybe you’ll feel compelled to follow Jesus’ lead and partner with us in planting this church – maybe even move.

Dec 29
2010

Support the Planting of the Gospel into the New Year

Uncategorized | by Pastor Adam Sinnett

We exist to build a great city through the gospel for the glory of God. This means our aim is to not merely build a great church, but a great city. Our welfare is deeply connected to the welfare of the city. We love Seattle and want all who live here to know their Creator, Jesus Christ. We are doing this by planting communities of Jesus-followers that enjoy God, redemptively engage the city and reach the world. We have a big vision, but to get there we need your help.

This is a great time to consider year-end giving or further involvement in 2011.

Pray.

We need prayer. For all our preparation, we cannot succeed without God building his church. Jesus promises to build His church and he does so through the faithful work, service and prayers of His people. There is much spiritual opposition, relational tension, financial strain and physical hardship involved in planting a church. Please join us in daily prayer to our God who is able to do above and beyond all that we ask, think or imagine (Eph 3:20). You can keep up with our prayer updates here. We’re still in process of finding 100 people to pray for us daily for one year. Let us know if you’d like to join the front-lines prayer team.

Join.

Whether you already live in Seattle, or Orlando, perhaps God is moving you to join us downtown Seattle. Are you a dreamer, builder, missionary, or faith-filled risk-taker? Pray about joining us, even moving, downtown. Some of you should consider raising support and becoming an integral part of this new work. You can learn more about our vision here.

Give.

Our aim is to be self-sustaining by the fall of 2014. Until then we are dependent on outside financial partners. In the life of a young, urban, missional church in a challenging context, every dollar makes a difference. Would you consider regular monthly giving over the next three years or a one time gift? You can learn more about giving options here.

Let’s build a great city together, through the gospel, for God’s glory, in 2011.

Oct 28
2010

Two Miraculous Births in Process

Uncategorized | by Pastor Adam Sinnett

We are in a season of simultaneously witnessing two miraculous births.

The First Miraculous Birth.

Five months ago the Sinnett family received the news we would never be able to have children naturally again due to various complications. We received this diagnosis of being infertile the same day as our initial prayer and dessert gathering on May 25th. We were, of course, crushed. After appropriately grieving, we sold most of our baby stuff before moving downtown, spent considerable time sifting through the various fertility options, and ultimately landed on adoption. Then, miraculously and inexplicably, two months ago Jen had a positive pregnancy test. Yes, positive. After being diagnosed infertile by two doctors, we are now expecting a baby mid-April. We couldn’t be more excited, or surprised. To those of you who have been praying, thank you. This is the first miracle.

The Second Miraculous Birth.

This past Sunday we received a glimpse of another miraculous birth in process, the birth of a new church in the heart of downtown Seattle – Downtown Cornerstone. After gathering as a launch community throughout the summer, we had our first preview gathering this past Sunday. God is bringing together a multi-generational, multi-ethnic, multi-life stage, multi-gifted group of people that form this new church. Join us this fall in community or at one of our upcoming preview gatherings as we follow Jesus’ lead in planting a church of forgiven imperfect people worshipping our perfect God, Jesus Christ.

This new church coming to life in the city is just as impossible as a woman diagnosed barren giving birth. We’re witnessing both happen and invite you to share in our joy.

Oct 21
2010

The Top 10 Obstacles to “Church” in Seattle.

Uncategorized | by Pastor Adam Sinnett

Over the last six months I’ve spent considerable time in the city, speaking with neighbors, baristas, Real Change-sellers, grocery store clerks, artists, street musicians, lawyers, other pastors, and business professionals. One question that I nearly always ask in some form is, What do you think are the primary obstacles to the Christian Church in Seattle?” It has been a fascinating exercise and deeply telling. One of the more interesting observations is that Christians tend to blame “secularism” or “postmodernism” for the decline of the Church, while those who don’t follow Christ tend to blame Christians themselves. Therefore, in light of this, I’ve compiled the following list of the top ten obstacles to the Christian Church in Seattle, according to my unofficial poll of Seattle. I’m using “Church” in its broadest meaning. Nothing surprising here, unfortunately.

“The Christian Church is ___________.”

#1 Hypocritical.

This was, by far, the top response. Seattle seems to have noted an observable disconnect between belief and the behavior of the Church. The inconsistency leads many to dismiss the Church.

#2 Irrelevant.

The Church is also seen as irrelevant, having little to do with the rest of life. The Church and its beliefs are seen as having little connection with the every day; though there may be some value for the life to come. Generally speaking, the Church is not cool.

#3 Self-righteous.

Many noted the self-righteous flavor of the Church and those within. There is a perception that the Church positions itself as morally and spiritually superior, and in so doing deepens the irrelevance noted above.

#4 Judgmental.

Relatedly, many feel judged by the Church and therefore unwelcome. I’ve met no one who claims sinlessness. Most clearly understand their sin, yet the perceived judgment from the Church makes it an unlikely place to go for relief from their guilt.

#5 Unloving.

Some noted they felt the Church was cold, sterile, unloving and more concerned with its own self-preservation than genuinely and sacrificially loving the city.  Many felt they need to belong to the Church in order to be loved by the Church.

#6 Unfriendly.

Similar to above, the Church was also described as unfriendly. Those who are part of the Church seem to devote the majority of their time to the Church, leaving little time for others who are not.

#7 Unsympathetic.

The Church is also described as being unsympathetic to the real, genuine struggles of people. The Church is viewed as having quick, superficial answers, but fails to genuinely relate to where people are.

#8 Boring.

Because of its irrelevance, self-righteousness and general lack of friendliness the Church is also seen as boring. The Church is not viewed as a place of joy, vibrancy and life.

#9 Impractical.

The idea of Church is seen as irrelevant because it is viewed as impractical. The teaching and life of the Church is seen as being of little practical use.  Some mentioned that while what the Church believes may be true, it doesn’t appear to work (see point #1).

#10 Enslaving.

Some noted that the Church is enslaving with all of its rules and regulations, rather than freeing and liberating. Many viewed the Church as restrictive and life-taking, rather than life-giving.

Summary.

Together, these form a substantial obstacle to the idea of “Church” in Seattle. Its no wonder Seattle has become a refuge for those seeking to escape it. Whether or not these are misconceptions or excuses, we should view them as genuine obstacles that must be addressed, repented of and deconstructed. The Church described above is not the Church Jesus came to establish. During his earthly ministry, Jesus was “accused” of being a friend of sinners. The moral and spiritual outcast enjoyed his presence, even though he had hard things to say. If we’re following the Jesus of the Bible, this must increasingly become true of us. The Church of Jesus Christ is intended to be a people dedicated to truth and grace, holiness and mercy, creativity and beauty, service and sacrifice, love and joy, passion and relevance (after all, Jesus is reality (Col 1:15-20).

Our hope, as Downtown Cornerstone, is to be part of changing this tide in Seattle for His glory, our ultimate joy and the good of this city. Would you like to join us?