Being a guy interested in church planting, if I’m near a church I’ve heard about, I have to visit and see what they’re up to. We had the chance to visit National Community Church’s service at Union Station and their coffee house this weekend. I’m a huge fan of NCC’s coffee shop/meeting space/office space approach in D.C., so I was excited to see what Ebenezers actually looks like. Great feel. Great location. For those who are interested, I’ve posted a few quick pictures of the coffee shop here. (Only got to see the main floor. Offices were closed on Sunday and a group was meeting downstairs)
It was an off week for Capitol Hill, so the church only had one service at Union Station and attendance seemed low, but I was excited to experience church in a movie theater setting. I’ve been a fan of the concept for a while, but this was the first time I’d seen it in action.
Here’s my top takeaway: The movie theater environment works. It’s comfortable and flexible. It’s in a place people are already familiar with. The setup does downplay interaction between people during the service, but let’s face it – a Sunday service isn’t where most meaningful interaction between folks is going to happen anyway. Most “main gatherings” exist for worship and teaching, and that’s easily done in a place where people are already used to sitting and absorbing information and stories.
And finally, I have to say that the folks at NCC have put together a great looking coffee shop. It seems to be in a prime location, and they pulled it off with excellence. I loved seeing people sitting around talking. The space for meetings downstairs and their office space upstairs works perfectly for how their church is structured.