Bethel Lutheran Church: Choosing community over a building

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

The stained glass window at Bethel Lutheran Church

As some have already heard through the local grapevine, Bethel Lutheran Church recently finalized the sale of their former site at the corner of N 175th St and 8th Ave NE to Seattle’s Buddha Jewel Monastery. The sale came after a year-long discernment process by the people of Bethel; the congregation will be moving from their old site to a new one in mid-February 2016.

Bethel Lutheran Church might be moving, but they aren’t closing: Pastor Chris Ode is excited to share the news that the congregation has chosen to reinvest some of the proceeds from the sale into purchasing a new home in the nearby North City Business District.

“At Bethel, we cooperate with – and offer space to -- dozens of organizations and ministries: churches who minister to various first generation immigrant populations, 12-step groups, daycares, and other community-focused non-profits. Some of them meet regularly, some of them meet sporadically, but nearly all of them will be coming with us to the new location,” he said.

The move will solidify the congregation’s financial foundation and free them to refocus their energies away from maintaining a large, aging building and its grounds.

“While moving away from the home Bethel has known for so long will be hard, the opportunity this provides us to be a more active presence in the community is incredible: we will finally be able to focus on ‘building ministry’ instead of ‘building maintenance.’ 
We are excited to use this opportunity to deepen our existing partnerships and develop new ones.”

Bethel will continue to operate out of its former location until the move in February, though some of their associated organizations will be moving sooner. The new site is located at 17529 15th Ave NE – the “North City Office Building” currently rented to the Siddha Yoga Meditation Center.

Some of the current organizations sharing space with the people of Bethel include:
  • Aaron’s Place (day center for young adults with physical and/or developmental disabilities)
  • Childcare Providers’ Cooperative Preschool (preschool coop organized by local daycare providers)
  • Ethiopian Evangelical Church of Seattle (Ethiopian and Eritrean-focused ministry)
  • Iglesia Evangelica de Los Valles (Hispanic-focused ministry)
  • Lutheran Counseling Network (independent, licensed counselor)
  • Pacific Northwest Shell Club (dedicated to cataloguing and researching Northwest marine life)
  • Reborn Church (Korean-focused ministry)
  • Girl Scout Service Unit 510
  • Alanon District 21/22
  • Blind Benders Cocaine Anonymous
  • Friday Morning Meditation Alcoholics Anonymous
  • Jaywalkers Alcoholics Anonymous
  • Northern Light Marijuana Anonymous
  • Steps by Candlelight Overeaters Anonymous
  • We’re Glad You’re Here Narcotics Anonymous
  • Working With Others Alcoholics Anonymous

You can learn more about these organizations and Bethel Lutheran Church at their website.


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