Greenwich Village in Manhattan is a vibrant, unique neighborhood that is all about revolution, in an area often violently opposed to Christ.
Greenwich Village in Manhattan is a vibrant, unique neighborhood that is all about revolution, in an area often violently opposed to Christ. Understandably, this brings a whole new set of challenges to ministry. The Village Church is a small PCA congregation in Greenwich Village with a demographic that reflects its surrounding community—young and artistic. Because of its proximity to New York University, the New School and other elite college and universities, the church draws college students—many of whom found it after their parents Googled “greenwich village church.”
Traditional ministries to college students and young professionals focus on reaching a “minority” in the church to make them feel included, but at TVC, the young people are not a small minority. Instead, they comprise a large part of the congregation and hold leadership positions in its ministries, fully integrated into the larger church family. The under-40 crowd includes elders, pastoral interns, Bible study leaders, worship ministry musicians, children’s Sunday School teachers and virtually every other ministry.
Because the congregation meets in a building belonging to another church, much of the community building happens in the members’ homes through fellowship groups that meet throughout the week. These groups connect people who live or work in neighborhoods in the city—for instance, Williamsburg, Astoria and Chelsea. They are multi-generational, spanning those new to the city and those who have been living in New York for decades. Studying the Bible and praying for one another is an oasis in the midst of a notoriously hectic city.
The Village Church focuses on those who are outsiders to the church, particularly artists who often find themselves on the fringes of Christian community. New York City is full of young, talented artists and many of them find kindred spirits at the church, collaborating on projects, performing at church-sponsored events and exploring what it means to be both a Christian and an artist. The church sponsors a monthly event at the Bowery Poetry Club in the East Village, at which the church’s artists screen their films, perform their monologues, play their music, read their poetry or display their artwork.
Church website: www.villagechurchnyc.com