Local Churches Trying New Formula to Grow Their Congregations

Call it the changing face of worship. In the last year several churches in the Capital City have taken unconventional steps to grow their churches.

In March, Fresh Annointing International moved into what was the Carmichael Center.

What had been used for entertainment is now a worship center.

And a few years ago The church at Silver Springs chose to worship in front of the silver screen in a movie theatre.

This is a non-denominational church that wants to use creative, high-tech methods to share the word of God.

What was a Circuit City building near Eastdale Mall is now a place of worship as well, and it's a new day for what was a small methodist church in South Montgomery.

Today we look at the concept of multi-sites and how a larger church can help dwindling congregations begin anew.

Mr. Bo Freeman, chairman of the board of trustees at Asbury Church, looks at June 17th as the, "first day of the rest of asbury's life."

"Who would have thought we'd have a 100 people?" Freeman says.

The first service at what is now Frazer United Methodist at Asbury.

Annette Freeman, the Asbury Church historian says she expected it to be good but says its even better because they didn't know the scale of Frazer's vision.

Asbury is a small church with a big history.

The worship center is more than 50 years old and at one time was overflowing with young families.

In the 1980's, however, many members started moving away.

This left a predominately older white congregation sitting in what is now a predominately black neighborhood.

Mrs. Freeman explains, "We've always been a family church with an open door policy."

For years attempts have been made to bring the community into this church she says.

Already, the Freemans are seeing and hearing signs of new life as the nursery and children's room are once again becoming busy places.

Video Extra:

Check out the video links to hear John Schmidt, Pastor of Frazer United Methodist Church, chat about this new venture and what it means for his congregation.