About

About Us

Colonial Church is a vibrant, intergenerational, congregational church; centrist in theology, passionate about community and eager to serve Christ through missional engagement locally and internationally. We are devoted to raising our kids, nurturing students and families, and breathing in deeply the fresh air of the Holy Spirit through Christian worship and wrestling with the Bible. Our congregation draws from all across the southwest Minneapolis metro. We gather on Sundays and Wednesdays and provide opportunities for connection all through the week. Click on the links below to learn more.

Our 5 Core Values
The following five core values were discerned through an intentional process of prayer, listening (to God and our congregation), and earnest deliberation. We believe them to encompass our identity and calling in this next season of our life together. The sentences following each value provide detail but are also dynamic and therefore subject to modification as we live them out together.
Welcome Beloved
  • We are each beloved and welcomed unconditionally by God. In turn, having been loved and welcomed, we strive to love and welcome all people no matter what. At the same time, God’s love is an invitation to transformation. We are loved as we are, but we’re never left to stay that way. To encounter Jesus is to be changed.
  • Risk Together The Messy Path of Faith
    • Following Jesus entails risk. We must die to ourselves for the sake of new life, forgive expecting nothing in return, trust God when all hope seems lost, and take up a cross to follow Christ who for us is the way, the truth and the life (Mark 8:34; John 14:6). We do not risk alone. We have each other and the courage and conviction of God’s Spirit.
    • Wrestle With The Tensions In God's Word & World
      • As finite and flawed humans, we necessarily struggle with the teaching of Scripture, with God’s call to righteousness and with life in our troubled and complex world. Yet wrestling makes us honest, open and vulnerable toward God and others. Our doubts and struggles are material for deeper spiritual growth.
      • Immerse In Sacred Spaces & Rhythms
        • There are places, traditions and particular practices of faith and worship wherein we tangibly encounter the holy and living God. Regular immersion in such places and practices forms and reforms us in line with the good and acceptable and perfect will of God (Romans 12:1-2). In these transcendent places and moments, we experience realties larger than ourselves and realize the fullness faith in Christ makes possible.
        • Do Good For Christ's Sake
          • Jesus said you will know a tree by its fruit (Luke 6:44). While you can do nothing to earn your salvation or God’s love, you must do something to show you’ve received it. We live out the fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22) in our church and families, at work and in our neighborhoods, even to the ends of the earth. Together as church, we encourage and identify giftedness, train, equip and collaborate in service to the world as Christ.
Our History and Tradition
What We Believe
  • Colonial Church affirms the historic Christian faith rooted in Holy Scripture and confessed by the church at all times and in all places.
  • We believe God has been revealed as the one true God in the three persons of the Trinity: the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit.
  • We believe God who has created all things creates us in God’s own image and sets before us the ways of life and death. But as human beings, we “all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23). In love, God has acted to save our fallen world from sin, death and the power of evil through the words and events of redemptive history fulfilled ultimately in Jesus Christ.
  • In Jesus of Nazareth, God became human, revealed himself to us, and shared our common humanity.
  • We believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God, the Savior of the world who through his life, death and resurrection revealed the divine love, conquered sin and death, and reconciled the world to himself.
  • We believe God gives us the Holy Spirit, who calls and gathers us into the Church of Jesus Christ, binding in covenant faithful people of all ages, tongues and races.
  • Through the Holy Spirit, we are fed by the Word of God, we share in Christ’s baptism, we eat at his table, and we grow in the grace and knowledge of God.
  • We affirm the Bible contains the Word of God, given by divine inspiration, the only normative rule of faith and practice. The books of the Old and New Testaments are to be interpreted according to their historical context and purpose in reverent obedience to the Lord who speaks through them in living power.
  • We believe through the Holy Spirit we are justified and sanctified by God’s grace and enabled to love one another. God promises to all who trust him forgiveness of sins, fullness of grace and eternal life in his kingdom which has no end.
  • As the church, we are called to proclaim the gospel to all the world, to care for one another and to serve the world, striving for justice, peace and reconciliation among all people.
  • God’s redemptive purpose will be consummated by the return of Christ to raise the dead, to judge all people, and to establish his glorious kingdom. Then shall the eager longing of creation be fulfilled and the whole earth will proclaim the glory of God who makes all things new.
  • The following statement of principles, therefore, is not a test but an expression of the spirit in which the church interprets the Word of God. We adopt the following principles as expressions of our faith and doctrinal attitude:
    1. The Holy Bible, our only rule of faith and practice.
    2. The Lord Jesus Christ, the only head of the Church and our only Savior.
    3. Christian, a sufficient name for Christ’s followers.
    4. Christian character of life, the only test of fellowship.
    5. Individual interpretation, the right and privilege of all Christians.
    6. The union of all followers of Christ, even as Christ prayed.

    To God be all blessing and honor, all glory and power.
Principles of Congregationalism
  1. Christ is the sole head of the church Christ-ruled and Christ-centered fellowship.
  2. The “gathered” church Each congregation is a covenant community gathered by God. Christ is in our midst guiding our thoughts and actions by the presence of the Holy Spirit.
  3. Independence and autonomy of each local church
  4. Church is gathered around Word (Scripture) and Sacrament Where the Word is faithfully proclaimed and taught and the Sacraments of Baptism and the Lord’s Supper are rightly administered.
  5. All members are “ministers” We are all “priests unto God” and are part of the “priesthood of all believers”. Each of us has a ministry in our daily lives and in the life of the church.

  6. History
      Colonial Church is a Congregational church in the Reformed tradition of Protestant Christianity.
      Why is the denomination called “Congregational?”

      The name comes from the fact that each local congregation is self-governing. We emphasize the belief that each congregation is an independent, autonomous expression of the Church gathered under the Lordship of Jesus Christ.

      Is Colonial part of a larger national denomination?

      Yes and no. Our belief is that Christ is the sole head of the Church and that each local congregation is “gathered” under the leadership of Christ. Therefore, we govern ourselves as a Christ-ruled fellowship seeking the guidance of the Holy Spirit at work among us. Although we are not governed by an outside denominational body, we are in cooperative association with other Congregational churches and denominations in the United States. Colonial is affiliated with three nationwide Congregational bodies: the United Church of Christ (UCC), the National Association of Congregational Christian Churches (NACCC), and the Conservative Congregational Christian Conference (CCCC).

      What is the history of Congregational churches?

      Our roots go back to the 16th century English Reformation when a group known as the Puritans separated themselves from the state church in England and came to America for religious freedom. They arrived in the New World in 1620 on the Mayflower ship and became known in America as the “pilgrims”. The churches they established in early New England were later known as Congregational churches.

      What does “in the Reformed tradition” mean?

      During the 16th century Protestant Reformation in Europe, there were movements throughout Europe to reform the Catholic church. Martin Luther, for example, led reform work in Germany and churches growing out of his leadership became known as “the Lutheran tradition” of Protestant Christianity. Other reformers, such as John Calvin in France and Ulrich Zwingli in Switzerland, led reform work that led to the establishment of churches later referred to as “the Reformed tradition”. Congregational churches are descendants of “the Reformed tradition” tracing its roots back to reformers like Calvin and Zwingli.

Governance
Colonial Church is congregational, meaning that the ultimate authority of the church, under Christ, is the gathered congregation. Each year at an Annual Meeting, the Congregation elects a Church Council of six to nine members, as well as a Moderator, Vice-Moderator and Treasurer. Along with the Senior Minister, the Colonial Church Council is the governing body of the church, accountable to the gathered congregation. In addition, the Congregation and Church Council elect and appoint various committees and task forces to oversee the work of the church.
Church Bylaws
Church Council Minutes
Colonial Church Foundation
Supporting the mission for Colonial Church.

The Foundation was established in 1971. In the early years, the Colonial Foundation was responsible for a modest sum of money from prior memorials and bequests. In 1985 a major bequest dramatically increased the size of the Foundation’s endowment. This prompted the development of spending guidelines approved by the Colonial Church Council. A elected Foundation Board of Directors oversees the work of the Foundation.

The Colonial Foundation has based its operation on several key principles:
  1. To oversee the proper financial management of the Foundation portfolio.
  2. To distribute grants from the Foundation funds to advance the mission of Colonial Church.
  3. To protect the interests of Colonial Church’s ownership in the Waters Senior Living project.
  4. To disburse only current earnings from investments and will be committed to preserving endowing principle.

Gifts to the Colonial Church Foundation become part of an endowment fund unless otherwise designated. Gifts become a means of supporting the work and ministry of Colonial Church in perpetuity.

Donors can leave a legacy through designated gifts that hold special interest for donors. Designated gifts may be made within four basics funds of the Foundation’s endowment:
  1. Colonial Village Fund for maintenance of the church’s building and grounds.
  2. Program Fund for specific program areas and ministries of Colonial Church.
  3. Mission and Outreach Fund for ministries and special projects as recommended by the Mission Task Force and approved by the Foundation’s Board of Directors.
  4. General Fund for purposes determined by the Foundation Board and not normally funded by the church’s operating budget.

The endowment fund is invested and managed professionally. A financial firm works with the Foundation Board of Directors to maximize investment performance. Annually, the Board performs a complete review of portfolio performance.

Heritage Society

The Heritage Society is made of donors in our Colonial community who have made gifts of commitments of future financial support to Colonial Church through their wills of other charitable gifts. We are grateful for their faithfulness. If you are considering a financial gift to Colonial Church through the Heritage Society please contact Pam Halvorson at 952-925-2711.

For more information on our Council for Colonial Church and the elected officials, please click here.