July 6, 2023

After over a year of prayer, listening for God’s voice and to each other, hard work, and challenging conversations, council approved the Statement of Belonging at its July 6 meeting. Council is now looking forward to helping our congregation continue to grow into the statement. Council will work with the new Classis Grand Rapids East committee that is gathering information for member churches about options going forward post-Synod 2023. We want COS to be a place of refuge, fellowship, and hope for all our church family and also one that is obedient to God’s Word.

Church of the Servant aims to be an inclusive congregation, as we believe the Gospel calls the Body of Christ to be. We aim to not discriminate, on any level, on the basis of race, sex, gender, sexual orientation, economic power, mental health, or disability.

Here at Church of the Servant we strive to be children of God, one in Christ Jesus, unified in one faith, one Lord, and one baptism. We seek to be a church that welcomes all, serves all, and allows all to minister in the name of Jesus Christ.

But we confess that we fail in these aims, and that there are systems and patterns of exclusion that we have failed to notice, and failed to eradicate. We ask you to help us work to realize the unity that the Gospel calls us to as part of the Body of Christ. If there is a way that we have excluded you, a loved one, or even a stranger—perhaps by failing to provide a safe environment to disclose a mental health issue or by having a facility that does not accommodate a physical disability—please let us know through this anonymous form:

Additionally, we uphold the Christian Reformed Church’s position, which states: The church pledges to be a caring community, recognizing the needs and gifts of people with physical, emotional, sensory, and intellectual disabilities. Through ministries such as the Office of Disability Concerns (crcna.org/disability), in collaboration with Friendship Ministries (Friendship.org) and the Disability Concerns office of the Reformed Church in America (rca.org/disability-awareness), the CRC urges all churches and members to work toward eliminating physical and architectural barriers, attitudinal barriers that make persons with disabilities feel unwelcome, and communication barriers in sight, sound, and understanding.