A common question that is asked (or should be asked) is, “How do I become a member of the church?” The short and best answer is this: if you are a Christian, you are already a member of God’s family, the church. There is no such thing as a “lone ranger” Christian. To belong to Christ is to belong to His family.
As far as local church membership goes, a Christian individual or family comes to the following conclusion : “I am choosing to express my membership in Christ’s worldwide church through a local church body.” Although each local church body may have its unique way in which one may commit to membership, there should be some general agreement as to what the Bible makes clear about what it means to be a Christian and how that fleshes itself in life and as a member of church.
More specifically, then, is to answer the question of what is the process for membership at Orchard Community Church. Our goal is a simple process – at the heart of which is a mutual agreement between the Christian and the church leadership to be in partnership together for the Gospel. Here is the simple process:
1. That the individual or family start attending OCC and identify themselves as a Christian. If they have come from another church, our hope is that they are a Christian in good standing with the church from which they came. If you are interested in understanding what it means to be a Christian, we would recommend that you listen to the following sermon: The Gospel: God’s Story and You
2. We’d ask that all who are interested in becoming a member at OCC, listen to the following sermon: Membership: Partnering Together for the Gospel
3. That each individual desiring membership would look over and read the “OCC Statement of Faith” and understand that this is foundational to what OCC believes and will seek to maintain unity with these beliefs (Ephesians 4:1-7).
4. Meet with an elder or pastor and go over the OCC Membership Agreement. This is not so much a contract as it is a mutual agreement to partner together as a church community for the sake of the Gospel.
5. Read the book I Am A Church Member by Thom Rainer within six months of becoming a member (or before). Either way, we’ll provide you with a free copy.
6. Lastly, we hope that the individual and/or family will find a place to serve and be involved in the OCC community, if they aren’t already.
If you have any questions about this process, do not hesitate to e-mail Pastor Todd Burgett: firstname.lastname@example.org or call the church office at: (408) 379-1682