I lived in the Bible belt for a long time so when we moved to South Florida 8 years ago, I felt a little bit like I was in a foreign country. When you look at the statistics for the metro-Miami area, which includes West Palm Beach, Fort Lauderdale and Miami, you will find that over 70% of the population speak a language other than English at home and about 50% of the population was born in a foreign country. So at Family Church we don’t just want to be multicultural – we need to be.
If we’re going to impact those who are far from God, we need to reach a diverse group of people. For us, a multicultural church is a local imperative. Imperative means “absolutely necessary or required; unavoidable.” It’s absolutely necessary for our church to reach people who don’t speak English, so what do we do? We plant churches with services in Spanish and Creole. It’s absolutely necessary for our church to reach people in ethnic communities, so what do we do? We plant churches in every neighborhood, to reach all kinds of people.
We recently partnered with another church so that our Spanish-speaking church, Iglesia Familiar, could meet on their property. They are in a neighborhood of primarily Latino families. It was a bold and forward-thinking move on their part. It’s these kinds of partnerships that will help us reach the 96% of all South Floridians who are unchurched or irreligious.
We want all people to feel welcome at any of our campuses. Each campus is diverse, but we recognize that some will connect faster and better in their heart language. It’s absolutely necessary that we plant churches that represent the culture in which we live. How are you addressing the diversity in your community?
Watch for Part 3, Multicultural Church: A Practical Necessity