The Nazareth Project
“Nathaniel,” Philip says, “we’ve found him, we’ve found the one, the one about whom Moses and the prophets wrote, the Savior, and, are you ready for this, it’s Jesus, son of Joseph from . . . Nazareth.”
And Nathaniel looks at Philip as if Philip has just told him that really…the Chicago Cubs are really, actually going to win the World Series this year.
“Nazareth? Can anything good come out of Nazareth, much less the Savior of the world?”
Many of our rural churches are located in places that are the modern day equivalents of the small, agricultural community known as Nazareth, where Jesus was raised. To change the view of people like Nathaniel that very little could come out of such a small place, Thriving Rural Communities began The Nazareth Project.
Through it, leaders from rural churches participate in a study of the Five Practices of Fruitful Congregations:
- Radical hospitality
- Passionate worship
- Intentional faith development
- Risk-taking mission and service
- Extravagant generosity
Participants from several rural congregations in a District attend retreats, undertake a new local mission project, and work with an encouragement and accountability coach. Drawing on these resources, each church develops a plan for strengthening their church in each of the five practices and works with the coach to implement the plan.
To learn more about The Nazareth Project, contact us.
Download additional Nazareth Project materials
- Program Overview and Timeline (pdf) (as tailored for the Waynesville District)