Support First Things by turning your adblocker off or by making a  donation. Thanks!

So, you’ve started a church plant. You’ve gathered together a few faithful families and individuals from within a community, and you’re likely now meeting in homes, rented office space, or more likely—a public school building. Hopefully, you’ve decided (and founded your church) upon sound doctrinal tenets and have identified at least a few church leaders.

Your next order of business—even before you secure adult-sized folding chairs and an electronic drum machine—is to decide up on a church name. While there’s ample biblical precedent for the naming of animals, textual support for the naming of a church is scant.

Thankfully, we evangelicals (who are typically disoriented without written instruction) have found a way to remedy this. I’m not sure as to the origins of the method, but the system below can account for approximately 83.585 percent of all evangelical churches. It’s really a rather simple process.

STEP ONE: Start with the list of words below:

  • Grace
  • Life
  • Community
  • Covenant
  • Fellowship
  • Creek
  • Calvary
  • Fire
  • River
  • Road
  • Word
  • Bible
  • Memorial
  • Chapel
  • Spirit
  • Faith
  • Cross
  • Hope
  • Light
  • Redeemer
  • First

Of course, one could readily add the word “Pointe” into the mix above, but by all means, make sure that the trailing “e” is in place if you want to look like a bona fide evangelical church. Otherwise, congregants might miss the “point.”

STEP TWO: Take any combination of the words listed above, in any order, add to them your denominational (or lack thereof) appellation, and tack on the word “Church” at the end (unless you’re really progressive, then you might want to go with “gaggle of Christ-followers,” or “seekers”). Voila! Your church now has a name.

There will be outliers, of course—the Chevrolet Missionary Baptist Church I once spotted while driving through rural Kentucky certainly didn’t fit the mold—but as a general rule, the system works pretty well.

Are there any other church-name-words that I’ve missed?

More on: The Church, Humor

Comments are visible to subscribers only. Log in or subscribe to join the conversation.



Filter First Thoughts Posts

Related Articles