Paul says to the church in Corinth: “Now you are the body of Christ, and individual members of it.” (1 Cor. 12:27).
Though Paul pictures the church through the image of a body, many consider their relationships to the church in terms of club membership. Membership in a church is not like membership at Sam’s Club or Netflix. In our culture, membership is often about being a consumer; the organization exists to serve us and to meet our felt needs. The Church is completely different – membership is our personal commitment to serve others as we all walk together to become more like Christ.
So at FCBC membership is not about pinning you down, it’s about building you up and sending you out. It’s a declaration of being all-in to follow Jesus with this family of faith and allowing them to disciple and commission you to live the way of Christ to your family, to your neighborhood, in your area and around the world.
FCBC tries to take seriously the biblical model of committed, accountable church fellowship. The church leadership prays regularly and cares especially for church members. We have seen time and time again the joy and encouragement that church membership brings to believers. It’s God’s plan for revealing his Kingdom and it’s beautiful to see.
We seek to carry out this vision through our four-step process by which to join FCBC.
Membership Class – All prospective members must attend our Membership Matters class. The curriculum is composed of five one-hour classes around:
- What does it mean to be In Faith?
- What does it mean to be In Community?
- What does it mean to be In Scripture?
- What does it mean to be On Mission?
Courses are offered in a Sunday morning format periodically through the year. Upon completion, those who attended all five classes are able but not obligated to sign up for a membership by completing the membership application. Once the membership application is completed, the prospective member is ready for a membership interview, the second step of the membership process.
Membership Interview – In a 45 minute meeting, the prospective member meets with an elder(s) to provide basic biographical information and recount God’s converting work in his or her life.
Elder Recommendation – At a regularly scheduled elders’ meeting, the elder will review the applicant’s testimony with the other elders. Upon receiving their collective approval, the candidate’s application proceeds to the next step: congregational affirmation.
Congregational Affirmation – During a Sunday worship gathering, the congregation affirms a person into member based upon the recommendation of the elders. A vote is taken, and with a majority secured, candidates are admitted into membership.
Right Hand of Fellowship - During our every-other-month members meetings (Sunday Night of Worship), an elder briefly describes how the prospective member came to know the Lord and other basic biographical information. The Right Hand of Fellowship is given as the gathered church renews their membership vows to one another.