08/18/2012 (press release: Nia) // Lexington, Kentucky, USA // Evelyn Cleveland
Nia Community of Faith will host their worship experiences every Sunday at The Lyric Theatre, 300 E. 3rd Street, in Lexington, Kentucky beginning with the Launch Nia Worship Experience on Sunday, September 9, 2012 at 10 am. The public is welcome to attend. Nia, a Ki-Swahili word for “Purpose”, is a new faith community of the Kentucky Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church. “We envision Nia to become a growing, multiethnic movement of Christian social activists in spiritual development, personal transformation, and social justice,” says Reverend Anthony Everett, a commissioned elder for the conference and founder of Nia Community of Faith. “The worship experience will be spirit-filled with ministry serving as its impetus.”
Since October of 2011, Nia Community of Faith activists have been involved in the community and growing a steady support base of the un-churched, the de-churched, and many people who were previously disenchanted with church altogether. “The church of today must use technology in the worship experience and address the crises of our local distressed communities to remain relevant,” says Everett. “Nia is the church for people who want to live out Christian faith in relationship to their daily lives. This is called ‘practical divinity’. No one should ever be concerned about what they have to wear to attend church. Instead, the church should make everyone feel welcomed and join in the efforts to address the social concerns of the marginalized members of our urban community. In doing so, we serve to aid, to empower, and to become advocates for people who often live in the margins without a voice. This is exactly what Jesus Christ did,” says Everett.
So far, Nia Community of Faith through its Nia Gives Back (NGB) efforts has collected food for God’s Pantry Food Bank. Nia has also supported community-based groups like Men of Action and Save Our Youth / Stop the Violence, recruited African American men to be mentors to African American male youth for a newly formed mentoring coalition, held an educational series about the issue of mass incarceration in communities of color, and advocated against increasing fees for impoverished prisoners and their families.
Since August 2, 2012, Nia Community of Faith and The Lyric Theatre and Cultural Arts Centre have teamed together to co-sponsor the popular and growing Thirsting Thursdays Spiritual Happy Hour. The free events have featured neo-soul, jazz, and hip hop music, as well as spiritual spoken word, poetry, rapping, networking, and a sermonette from Everett. This takes place on the first and third Thursdays of the month at 7:30 pm. Featured local artists have been Nam Oshun, Victorius Lyric, Devine Carama, and Dewayne Smithers. An open mic session where local talent is welcomed to participate is another highlight of the evening. Canned goods are collected at the events to support the NGB Food Drive.
About Nia Community of Faith
Nia Community of Faith, a new faith community of the Kentucky Conference of the United Methodist Church, is a growing multiethnic movement of Christian social activists in spiritual development, personal transformation, and social justice in Lexington, Kentucky! Like us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/NiaCommunity/, follow us on Twitter at @Nia_Community, email us at [email protected], and Join The Movement at www.LaunchNia.org.
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