At Park Avenue, we have a long-standing mission to make disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world.
We have chosen to center Christ in our community and surround Him with all our differences. In turn, He surrounds us with His active and gracious love. We pray we will live out His love by being a vibrantly Christ-centered, multiracial, multiethnic, intergenerational instrument of transformation, actively engaged with our urban neighborhood and our world.
In the tradition of Methodism, Park Avenue is about many hands working together. Park Avenue has a paid staff that includes a head pastor and associate pastor, ministry leaders, administration and operations support. We also have a team of volunteer lay leaders that oversee church operations and finances, and a network of committees that support and operate many of the ministries within the church. Park Avenue staff and lay leaders are mutually accountable to each other to support the mission, vision, and operations of our church with integrity and grace.
As a United Methodist Church, we are part of an interconnected network of United Methodist organizations that join together in missions and ministry, allowing us to accomplish far more than any single local church or person could do alone.
The United Methodist denomination does not have one central leader. Each region has a Bishop and a Superintendent to support churches, and each congregation has pastoral staff and lay leaders to support individual church communities.
Park Avenue is part of the North Central Annual Conference. There are annual conferences that meet regularly around the world to celebrate Christ’s work in the local and global church, report, listen and pray. The annual conferences elect 1,000 voting delegates from their clergy and lay leaders (50/50) to attend the General Conference, which meets every four years.
At the General Conference delegates wrestle with today’s issues in light of scriptural teachings and the church’s understanding of that teaching. The church makes decisions about its official stance and policies at this General Conference. Bishops attend the General Conference, and serve as presiding officers during the conference, but cannot vote.
Further reading: How the United Methodist Church is Structured