One way the district serves church workers is the annual New Worker Orientation. Held in late summer, pastors and commissioned workers who have entered the district during the past year are invited to meet the district staff, learn about the district’s mission and initiatives, and take a bus tour of Minneapolis’ Phillips community with John Mayer of City Vision.
The Phillips community, comprised of four smaller neighborhoods, is one of the most diverse in the state as far as ethnicity, economic status, and age. Within its boundaries are many opportunities to learn about the various people groups and religious communities found in the district.
During the tour, Mayer pointed out various churches and commented about how many in that neighborhood are not faithful to scripture, and how there is a real need for strongly scriptural churches. He also helped explain the living conditions that some experience, with extended families of more than 10 people living in one house.
The highlight for many on the tour was the variety of eating experiences that were available. The group enjoyed churros from a Mexican bakery and tea from a vendor at one of the Somali malls. Dinner was one of the many options at the Midtown Global Market on Lake Street.
Rev. Andy Audette, Church Planting Pastor at theAlley, was one of the participants in the New Worker Orientation. “I saw how local businesses and non-profits are moving into diverse neighborhoods and God is using them to bring healing to our cities,” reflected Audette. “It gets me excited to be a part of starting a church that sees where God is already at work and joins in on His mission to bring the gospel to all nations!”