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How to Get Plugged in At Mountain Life

Andrew Camp personifies how to get plugged in at Mountain Life. When he and his wife, Claire, moved to Park City nine years ago they started attending the church. Andrew was working as a chef at a restaurant on Main Street and Claire had just started an internship in psychology. But Andrew’s story has a twist.

With a degree in biblical studies from Biola University and a graduate of Talbot Seminary, Andrew felt the itch to get back into church ministry as soon as he got involved in Mountain Life. When asked what makes our church unique, he mentions the same thing that so many people articulate – it just feels right. “People walk in and they can almost exhale,” reflects Andrew.

Since there were no openings at Mountain Life, Andrew applied to various ministry positions across the country. Soon it became apparent that he needed church experience to secure such a job. So, he offered to be an unpaid intern at Mountain Life, working an additional 20 hours a week doing administrative tasks that gave him a part time salary. A few months later, he was offered the position of Spiritual Growth Pastor, which he has held for the last five years.
What is a Spiritual Growth Pastor?

The position that Andrew stepped into demonstrates Mountain Life’s commitment to connection. As Spiritual Growth Pastor, Andrew oversees Life Groups which are a fundamental part the church’s culture. A Life Group is a group of people who commit to growing spiritually, caring for one another, and making a kingdom impact. Essentially doing life together. Andrew’s role is to guide and manage Life Group leaders as well as getting people plugged into a Life Group. “I oversee the leaders, who are then overseeing the members of the Life Groups,” says Andrew. “If we have good leaders then we know the Life Groups will function well.”

Another part of his job is creating spiritual growth experiences on topics ranging from cultural issues to parenting. The goal is to build community within the church and help members learn and grow. This includes Stations of the Cross, and a Parenting & Technology class, to name a few, and of course Base Camp.
What is Base Camp?

While Starting Point, mentioned in a previous blog, is a first look at Mountain Life and what makes it unique, Base Camp is the next step along the trail to deeper connection and possible membership. “People come to Base Camp to build relationships,” says Andrew. “The goal is to get people into a Life Group, to make connections and start forming relationships.”

Typically offered three times a year, Base Camp meets once a week for 4-6 weeks. The next one offered in May is just four weeks long to finish before summer. And since the church still wants to meet people where they feel comfortable, the upcoming session will be a mix of in-person and online while following county guidelines.

With about 10-20 people attending, Base Camp is, “a small group experience designed to help you to make those connections that allow you to be known at Mountain Life,” says Andrew. The first half is focused on content. It describes the history of Mountain Life, our vision and values, the importance of Life Groups, and our statement of faith. It also showcases various serving opportunities within the church and even addresses the church budget and bylaws. According to Andrew, “The intent is to help people understand what Mountain Life is, so they have the information needed should they decide to become a member.”

The second half of Base Camp is a small group experience, where the group does a Bible study together thereby forming relationships. The intent is that attendees, “gather around shared ideas from Scripture that help them form relationships so that they can hopefully continue as a Life Group,” says Andrew.

It’s important to note that the end goal of Base Camp is not necessarily to commit to church membership, but rather getting folks plugged into a Life Group and finding their place of service within Mountain Life. “It’s a look and see approach to church membership,” says Andrew “And while the majority do become members, the others are still part of the church and feel a sense of belonging.”

As our church family continues to grow alongside the record growth of the Park City community, connection is vital. “Base Camp provides one small opportunity for that to happen,” says Andrew. “It provides easy steps to get plugged in so you’re not unknown and unnamed.”
By Liz Yokubison
Liz Yokubison is a freelance writer and author. You can follow her on her website, www.lizyokubison.com.

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