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Grace Chapel Church of Christ Builds Faith in the Next Generation

By S. Mathur

Forsyth County is one of the fastest growing areas in the country, popular wth families because it has an excellent public school system. Lead Minister Paul Huyghebaert says that Grace Chapel is designed to appeal to this demographic. Of the total membership of five hundred, almost half, or 216 are children, from newborns through age 18. He says that it was a conscious choice to focus on families with children: "We implement a family ministry strategy, in which we, the church, intentionally partner with children and their families to fuel faith in the next generation."

Every Sunday morning service includes Teaching, Singing, Lord's Supper, Giving, Prayer, and Class Time. Singing is an important part of the service and the life of the church. There is also an emphasis on community and programs for youth. The youth and children's ministries are led by dedicated staff members Rocky Wyatt, who works primarily with the Youth Ministry, and Kate Hazlewood, with the Children's Ministry. The Minister explains that "Both the Youth and Children's Ministries are aligned under the Family Ministry strategy to fuel faith in the next generation as the church and family partner together."

Other events include the youth night for teens on Sunday evenings and Vacation Bible School every summer where the children worship together, participate in service projects, play games and do science experiments. During the school year, Grace Chapel partners with Next Generation Focus to host the Smarter Me tutoring program. Tutoring is offered Monday through Thursday from 4-6PM, and on Saturday mornings. There are small groups for children at different levels: nursery, kindergarten and elementary.

What can people expect to find when they join? Minister Huyghebaert says that "Those who choose to partner with Grace chapel with be challenged to connect with others as they grow in their relationship with Jesus Christ. We highly value community and show this in the way we love and serve each other, both in the peaks and valleys of life."

He adds that newcomers receive a tangible and spiritual welcome: "If you choose to attend Grace Chapel on a Sunday morning, you will likely be greeted in the parking lot by one of our Host Team members. We hope that from the moment you set foot on our campus you will experience the grace of God through the actions of others. Our doors are open to all, whether you have a church background, or are a first time seeker. We believe that people of varying backgrounds will find at Grace Chapel, a place to belong."

Members reach out to the local and worldwide community through programs like the jail ministry, encouragement, food pantry and homes for children in Mexico and India. Grace Chapel provides family and relationship counseling through the Capstone center, which has a staff of licensed professional counselors, social workers, marriage & family therapists, pastoral counselors, and life/recovery coaches.

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