At the Athens Vineyard, we highly value children and desire to partner with families and work together to build strong spiritual foundations for kids and lead them to growing relationships with Jesus Christ. Our children are cared for with age-appropriate activities during the service for newborns through 5th graders.
Our preschoolers do a program called First Look, where the activities focus on three truths. "God made me. God loves me. Jesus wants to be my friend forever." Each week they will have worship time, a Bible story video, activity and prayer time, as well as play time on the playground or in the gym.
Students in Kindergarten through 5th grade participate in 252 Basics, based on Luke 2:52. The focus is on 3 basic truths: Wisdom - I need to make the right choice. Faith - I can trust God no matter what. Friendship - I should treat others the way I want to be treated. They have kid worship and a Bible lesson in large group, then split into early and late elementary classes for small group discussion, activities, and prayer time. Each week they receive God Time cards which aid them in learning to have their own personal time with God on a daily basis.
Parents are expected to be involved with our kids and serve in some way at church. They are also given CUE cards that summarize what their children are learning at church and give ideas for questions to ask kids at home and activities for learning memory verses and reinforcing the lessons.
"And Jesus grew in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and men."
The Athens Vineyard treasures the fellowship that we have created in our church community. We start each Sunday with a time of connection (and coffee!) before the service. We frequently share meals together (sometimes on the last Sunday of every month), which we call Lunch at Last. We hope you'll enjoy the opportunity to draw closer to each other as we draw closer to God.
"If therefore there is any encouragement in Christ, if there is any consolation of love, if there is any fellowship of the Spirit, if any affection and compassion, make my joy complete by being of the same mind, maintaining the same love, united in spirit, intent on one purpose."
We desire to be an instrument of the Kingdom in our community. This can take on many forms: ministering to individuals in our city, volunteering at local non-profit agencies, or raising awareness and support for international missions or justice organizations. We are called to share the love of Christ with all who are among us, knowing that we are all sinners completely dependent on God's mercy.
"Then the righteous will answer him, 'Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?' The King will reply, 'Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.'"
God has given many kinds of gifts to the church to help us carry out His calling. The gift of administration is often overlooked but is of great importance to the fulfillment of our mission. We desire to honor those who serve our church in this way!
"And God has appointed in the church first apostles, second prophets, third teachers, then miracles, then gifts of healing, helping, administrating, and various kinds of tongues."
1 Corinthians 12:28
We believe in the power of God to restore us inwardly and outwardly. We carve out a time of prayer and counsel during each service dedicated to healing, restoration, and seeking His will in our lives.
"Cast your burden upon the Lord, and He will sustain you; He will never allow the righteous to be shaken."
We encourage everyone to plug in to a small group or mentoring relationship through the Athens Vineyard. Our small groups run on a 'semester' schedule with a variety of topics and group structures for men, women, couples, and families. We also encourage students to connect with a 'home away from home' through our Adopt-a-Student/Adopt-a-Family program. Our church facilitates and values mentoring relationships. We have sign ups twice a year to mentor or be mentored. This is an awesome way to pour out and be filled.
"And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another - and all the more as you see the Day approaching."
The Bible offers a multitude of lessons on money and its proper importance in the lives of those who follow Jesus. We are fully dependent on God's provision to meet our needs, and we strive to follow Christ's teachings of faithful stewardship and responsibility in managing our church finances.
"And my God will meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus."
We believe that prayer is a conversation with the Lord. He is not silent and He longs to speak to, and hear from us. We know that prayer is vital to our spiritual survival. We know God still answers prayers. We believe we are called to encourage the Church to pray, as well as to listen for the Father's heart for ourselves and those around us. We all can hear His voice and should always be listening for Him to speak.
"Draw near to God and He will draw near to you."
We believe we're called to reflect God's glory back to him, praising Him for his power and grace, His mercy and love-singing songs of thankfulness for what He's done for us. And while worship is about the greatness of our God, we also believe that God desires to move in our midst, encouraging, empowering and strengthening us for His glory. We also desire to express our love for God in creative ways, through poetry, song, and art. On sundays, you might sing a song written by someone from within our fellowship!
"Enter His gates with thanksgiving and His courts with praise; give thanks to Him and praise His name. For the Lord is good and His love endures forever; His faithfulness continues through all generations."