About Narrate Church
Narrate’s story started in October of 2009 when a community of people from Billings teamed up with a handful of people from Helena to plant a new church. Harvest Church in Billings and Journey Church in Bozeman got us rolling, and we’re grateful for their generosity. From day one we said we wanted to plant a gathering and scattering community of people; we wanted to host helpful gatherings on Sunday and then spend the rest of the week telling God’s story with our lives. Another way we said it was “we want to exist in such a way that should we cease the most ardent critic of Christianity would be bummed.”
Ten years into our existence, Narrate is comprised of an incredible community of “owners” and an exceptional staff of seven. We’re still about creating gatherings on Sundays that help people think through what it means to follow Jesus and then scattering.
Theologically, we have an evangelical heritage and thus one that holds to strong beliefs about Jesus being the Son of God and the Bible being perfect for helping us know and follow Jesus. With regard to doctrine, we value the early creeds such as the Nicene Creed.
Another way to get us theologically is to read Dallas Willard’s book The Divine Conspiracy. In doing you’d be reading the book that best summarizes what we teach about Jesus, the cross, the church, and God’s In-Breaking Kingdom. Another option is John Ortberg’s Eternity Is Now in Session. Here you’ll find a great background on how we think about following Jesus together.
In the end, we teach that Jesus is the Gospel, the Bible is a gift, God’s Spirit continues to lead, and following Jesus is the goal. But we want Narrate to error to the side of creating a safe place for spiritually disillusioned and confused people. We also value a teaching culture that embraces the reality that faith evolves, generosity wins, pursuing faith in community is difficult but worth it, church is the means, not the end., disciples are servants, character and virtue matter, and human initiative and human surrender honor God, and questions are more powerful than answers.
Without a doubt, the best way to understand us might be to go to lunch or coffee with one of our team, you can reach them by emailing [email protected]
Finally, from a “business” perspective our 20-Mile March (Jim Collins in Great by Choice) is 1. Gathering Weekly and, 2 Scattering Monthly. Our “recipe”, also from Great by Choice, is:
- Create Sunday experiences that challenge long-time followers of Jesus and unchurched, de-churched, and spiritually minded people equally.
- Meet in public space – it’s safe for guests.
- Stay portable – it elicits a culture of owners, not members.
- Stay downtown.
- Connect via serving: Sunday teams and Scattering Opps.
- Maintain a networking and relational staff – meet over lunches and coffee daily.
- Teach with questions – they make us real and approachable.
- Scatter monthly; matter for the common good.
- Live with a high view of people – fight for it daily.
- Network, collaborate and scatter with individuals and organizations from different and unlikely sectors – stay on the edge.
- Invest heavily into mainstream advertising – don’t assume they know we’re here.