Churches in Seattle?
September 14, 2006 3:04 PM   Subscribe

Churches in Seattle?

I've just moved to the area and I'm church hunting so-to-speak.

However, I'm not just looking for a place to go to once a week to keep from feeling guilty or to meet girls.

I'm looking for a quality church with steadfast values.

The kind of church I'm looking for:

DENOMINATION: A Christian church. I come from a Baptist background, but I am not tied to the "Baptist" name. Presbyterian, Methodists, Community, and Independant churches are all along the lines of what I've grown-up with and might attend.

VALUES: A church with traditional values, but a heart for the present world we live in. This does not mean "a bunch of overly-opened minded push-overs"... 'cause we're still all sinners, and we still all need good 'ole Jesus. I want a church that knows what it believes. A church that loves the world but isn't swayed by the culture and climate of the world.

MUSIC: I have a passion for music. I'd love to find a church that embraces traditional as well as contemporary music. A big choir is a PLUS.

SIZE: I love big churches, that's where my spiritual gifts are best put to use. "Big" being defined as 2,000-15,000 members.

LOCATION: I live in Queen Anne, HOWEVER, I am not opposed to driving up to 45 minutes to 1 hour for a quality church. The members of this church will be like members of my own family... I'd drive to the ends of the Earth for a quality church home with quality people.

AUDIENCE: I'm 25 (soon to be 26) years of age. I'd like to find a church with a strong sigles/young professionals program.

OVERALL: I think I've outlined what I'm looking for. Any suggestions you have will be much appreciated. Please contact me if you have any other questions.
posted by bamassippi to Religion & Philosophy (12 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
There was an article in the paper yesterday about Mars Hill which might be worth checking out.
posted by snez at 3:08 PM on September 14, 2006

There was an article in Salon about the same folks.
posted by matildaben at 3:11 PM on September 14, 2006

Oops, I meant there was an article on Salon - thanks matildaben!
posted by snez at 3:25 PM on September 14, 2006

"a heart for the present world we live in"

with that in mind, if I were a churchgoer I would check out the church on Broadway with the rainbow laminated sign stating they accept everyone. At least, i'd check it out. Broadway and Republican I believe.
posted by freudianslipper at 4:09 PM on September 14, 2006

I believe, just for the record, that Seattle was determined some time ago to be the least religious city in America by some survey or other. Or one of the least religious, in any case.

You can still probably find most of what you want, as there are a lot of people in the Seattle vicinity and even a minority is a sizable number of people. But you're going to have a good bit less variety than what you're used to, I'd wager. It's good that you're willing to drive.

I frankly can't imagine attending a church with 2,000 to 15,000 people. Since we have the mental capacity to know only about 150 people, it would be like worshipping with strangers every Sunday. But if that's what you want, Seattle does sport a few large churches. One of them is The City Church, which has three "campuses." (Their pastor delivers the sermon live on video from Kirkland, so if you went to the Belltown outlet of this church chain, chances are that you'd rarely meet the pastor.) They claim to have over 3,000 attending regularly, but I would wager that that's 3,000 total, divided among their three locations.

The Belltown Messenger ran an article this past April reviewing five local churches; you may find that useful.

Disclaimer: I am an atheist; what do I know about churches?
posted by kindall at 4:21 PM on September 14, 2006

Ship of Fools forum might be a good place to cross-post this question - they're a Christian web community with a very broad and intelligent membership.
posted by By The Grace of God at 4:30 PM on September 14, 2006

My husband and I were raised Catholic, live in Ballard, and were slightly creeped out by the Catholic church nearest to us, will all its violent anti-abortion bumper stickers.

After quite a bit of hunting, we really, really like St. Therese in Madrona. Some Masses feature their own gospel choir, all include music in a large way. They are very active, the sermons often focus on the Iraq war and other recent events, the congregation is the most diverse I have ever seen.

Mars Hill creeps me out. Perhaps unfairly, but I read something about them believing women must be secondary to men (which...irony, yes, I'm Catholic). It disturbed me enough to pass on them, even though they are SO much closer to our house than St. Therese.
posted by GaelFC at 4:54 PM on September 14, 2006

Oh, here's the Mars Hill article I referenced.

Excerpt: "The Rev. Karen Ward, pastor of the postmodern Church of the Apostles in Seattle, says Mars Hill is “espousing a certain tradition, a very conservative, fundamental, Promise Keepers ethos.” Emerging-church pastors, she says, are generally more open to saying they don’t have all the answers.

In Driscoll’s view, homosexuality is a sin, although no more so than, say, premarital sex. Women should be loved and protected, while men are definitely heads of households. And women can be church leaders, but not pastors. “If I could change one part of the Bible,” Driscoll says wearily, “that would be the part, just so I could be left alone.”
posted by GaelFC at 4:58 PM on September 14, 2006

I bet if you google Seattle and churches, you might find some church websites to check out. When my son moved I did a little church research for him ahead of time, and was able to obtain lists of churches for a given area.
posted by konolia at 6:41 PM on September 14, 2006

This one might be smaller than you'd like, but I'll toss it in to the mix: Juanita Community Church in Kirkland. They're Reformed Baptists, which you can read more about here.

The Mars Hill option looks promising. I imagine their programs for 20-somethings would be particularly attractive. More about the emergent movement, here.
posted by Alt F4 at 6:08 AM on September 15, 2006

Taking this in a different direction, how about Saint Mark's Cathedral on Capitol Hill? I don't know how you feel about Episcopalians, but we have a pretty large congregation, many different choirs, and 4 different services on Sundays, all in different styles. (If you want the large choir, pomp and circumstance service, that's the 11am one.) We're also welcoming to all who are seeking a spiritual home.
posted by spinifex23 at 11:33 AM on September 15, 2006

An interesting follow-up in Metroblogging Seattle about Mars Hill by a Seattleite who is also a Christian. (He doesn't like them.)
posted by matildaben at 2:13 PM on September 18, 2006

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