We have been working hard to bring clarity to the process of assimilation at COTHA. Assimilation is how we take the people God sends us and help them connect and grow. While this may sound simple, it is actually a challenging process. The issue is to make it as simple as we can, yet be effective. An assimilation process can serve as a guideline for us as we develop new programs, as well as deepen others. For example, it is our hope to have a deeper “footprint” in the surrounding community, to help people know that we are here, and there is something here worth exploring.
As you may know, we host the community Farmer’s Market every Saturday. They pitch their tents and sell their wares and goods in the north parking lot. The decision to allow this was based on our desire to be known and seen in the Katy and surrounding communities. The use of our building is another way we do this. We see our building as a resource to the larger community, and many different groups use our campus throughout the week. We are involved in different festivals around the Katy area, again deepening our “footprint.” As we look at what we do, we add some things and stop doing others if they are not as effective.
As our community footprint deepens, we hope that some people will “come and see” what is going on at COTHA at one of our worship services or programs. This is why we offer one Saturday evening and two Sunday morning services. The variety of times is intended to help people who have busy schedules find a time that might fit them best.
As we grow the number of people in our worship services, we seek to find ways to help them make a decision to become part of our congregation. Our VIP area that is staffed by people who can answer questions, additionally our Welcome and Hospitality Teams are designed specifically to help our guests feel at home and remove any barrier that might keep them from coming again. Amazingly, people make a decision to return to a new church within ten minutes of their arrival. To help this, we hope to be a welcoming and inviting church.
We find ways to thank people for attending, such as emails, phone calls and hand written notes. Our prayer is that they will make a decision not only to return, but to enroll in our monthly membership class: COTHA Connect. When people make a decision to join, the process of assimilation has not ended.
The next step for a new member is to enroll in a class that we are launching in April. This class, COTHA Grow, formally known as COTHA Basics, is intended to help our new members learn the basics about growing a relationship with Jesus and finding a way to serve at COTHA. This class is new to us and will help us assist our new members connect at a deeper level.
In June, our third basic course of assimilation will be offered. This course, COTHA Go, will help our new members learn what is needed to be in leadership. The skills and tools acquired in this class can be used by serving in the various ministries we have at COTHA or be used by people in the workplace as they learn what it takes to practice Christian leadership in any setting. They also may be used to develop new programs and small groups.
In addition to the three basic classes, we offer may other programs such as COTHA U, Small Groups, Bible Studies, Daughters of the King and other courses. These other classes and programs assist us in helping people grow but are not part of the pipeline of assimilation that we have developed. It is certainly possible to be involved at COTHA without going through the pipeline, but the clarity and simplicity will guide us as we move forward. Our hope is to say to the Katy and surrounding communities to come, connect, grow and go! We do this because we exist to be a biblically functioning church that violates the status quo with biblical truth and seeks to connect the disconnected to the COTHA family.