The Orchard is a new church start within the Northern Door County area. We are affiliated with Evangelical Free Church; Forest Lake District.
OUR MISSION is very simple: To grow followers of Christ.
It’s the great commission of Jesus found in Matthew 28:19,20:
“Go, therefore, and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe everything that I have commanded you.”
Our core values are summed up in the three words on our logo: maturing, ministering, and multiplying.
Maturing is simply becoming more like Christ in our character and conduct. This is a life long process and no one ever arrives. But this is our goal. It recognizes that everyone is at a different point, and it believes that by the power of the Spirit and Word of God that people can change. Not only do we receive forgiveness through Christ, but we have a new life in Christ. That’s good news.
Ministering is about each of us serving one another to mature and grow. Maturing in Christ is not just an individual effort. It’s not a do-it-yourself project. Rather it involves a community effort within the fellowship of believers. It isn’t the responsibility of a professional. Each of us are to serve one another, encourage one another, and teach one another because we are all gifted by the Spirit for the common good. It’s good news that we are in this together!
Multiplying means that we are here for others. We want to communicate God’s grace in Christ so people can experience becoming a new person in Christ. This means we multiply believers, and we also multiply the gatherings of believers. Thus we want to take the good news to more people and places.
Philosophy of Ministry
So how do we get this done in Door County?
Door County has a very diverse cultural dynamic. Two million visitors a year come to Door County to enjoy its beauty and vacation here. But it’s also home to many people from all over the country as well as those that grew up here. It has been noted as one of the top 10 “small towns” to live in due to all its amenities and attractions. It’s a fun place to live, but it is also a unique place to live due it’s diversity. Therefore it takes a church with great flexibility and mobility.
Within the name The Orchard is our philosophy of ministry. When an Orchard wants to get larger it plants more trees. There’s a point where a tree can only grow so big. But an orchard can expand by planting more trees! Note the multiple trees in our logo!
So we see The Orchard as a church fellowship made up of many small groups we call a “Pastorate”. A Pastorate consists of 20 to 30 people (all different ages) that typically meet in homes. This allows for a high level of participation and a chance to build more personal relationships with other believers. It’s a way that people can indeed minister to one another in a personal way. But when a Pastorate group gets too large (houses are only so big) then it splits and starts another group. Remember our goal is multiplying!
This is actually how the early church grew and spread. It met largely in homes of believers. It was not institutional but more organic with everyone involved. EachPastorate will have its own leadership and will be able to structure its time and ministry to meet the needs of the people within that local fellowship.
But The Orchard will also meet for large celebration times and to share what God is doing in each others’ lives and each Pastorate.
This is a bit non-traditional because it’s not the typical way church has been done in our culture. But it is historical because it goes back to the way the early church grew and spread in the first three centuries, and it is the way the church is growing in many parts of the world today. It’s what some call the “apostolic genius” of the early church.
This allows the church to have flexibility within the ever-changing environment of Door County. Those that live here know that Door County has very distinct seasons. We move from the high intensity of the tourist season to the slow quiet times of late Fall, Winter, and early Spring. People live here from April to October then go south where it’s warm. Those that work here are very busy during the tourist season as they work every weekend. Then the slow times are to catch up and get rest. By having smaller fellowships in homes we will be able to adapt quickly to this unique culture we are able to assimilate more people into a Christian community that fits their schedules.
We are excited to see what God will do with The Orchard as we have already seen fruit in people’s lives. If you are looking for a participatory church experience call us or email us. We would love to have you become part of a maturing, ministering, and multiplying community of believers.