Brock and Katie Junak are the Pastors of Agape Church, a church plant in west Minneapolis, started in early 2019. They are passionate about reaching those outside the church and have a vision to show Jesus’s love to their city.
Up until this spring, Agape had been meeting at Sabes Jewish Community Center, but COVID-19 changed that. The pandemic forced churches to be creative and learn new skills in order to connect with their congregations. Many leaders have had to learn the valuable skill of organizational agility.
Brock and Katie had to adapt their ministry to connect with their congregation during COVID-19. Every member of their leadership team led a daily devotional on social media, coupled with a follow-up guide. On weekends they offered “Church on Zoom.” Meeting on Zoom provided an environment for discussion and a deeper sense of connection. Ultimately, Brock and Katie took this as an opportunity to learn from the past year and “re-launch.”
“It’s good and bad in that it gives us a chance to relaunch and do it with a lot less mistakes, like a reset button. But we are essentially starting from ground zero, which is extending the season of grind, which is overwhelming.” Pastor Brock states, “We are setting ourselves up better for future things, but it is currently making it much harder.”
Now Agape Church is more focused than ever, with an aim to reach the next generation of our society, Generation Z. Brock describes this generation as “post-post-Christian,” meaning they have had no connection to a faith community, since their parents didn’t attend church.
A key to reaching Gen Z is found in fostering self-identity in Christ through community, something that is ingrained in the DNA of “Agape Culture.” They believe, “one of the most important aspects of our walk with God is that we don’t do it alone. We need community to encourage each other, to share in our burdens, and to help process our beliefs and doubts.”
For more relaunching resources, visit our website at mnaog.org/covid19 to find CMN’s ReLaunch Kit and Troy Jones’ church recalibration Zoom webinars.