Updated: May 21, 2020
Alpine Church Links
Alpine Church Website: https://alpinechurch.org/
Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/alpinechurch/
YouTube Channel: https://www.youtube.com/user/alpinechurchvideo
1. Did the church answer the Questionnaire?
1. What is your church's official position on tithing?
Pastor Scott: “We believe that generosity is an important part of the life of a follower of Jesus Christ. We don't teach a specific amount that a person is supposed to give because we don't think the Bible tells us. We encourage people to follow 2 Corinthians 9:7, "Each one must give as he has decided in his heart, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver." We want people to give cheerfully as God puts it in their hearts.”
The video below provides additional insight into what Alpine Church teaches about financial giving to the local church.
2. Does your church have an official membership with a membership agreement or contract?
Pastor Scott: “We do not. Every believer is adopted into God's family, which is what matters most.”
While Alpine Church doesn't have official memberships, they do have a concept called "Going Full-Circle," which may include expectations and standards from the church that liken the kind of expectations and standards found in a typical church membership agreement. Learn more on the About Us page at alpinechurch.org.
3. Is your church transparent with its financial information? How much does your church bring in through donations and tithing, plus additional income, and how is that money distributed? (I noticed that AC is a member of ECFA; do you provide further information on how funds are distributed within your church? Ex: How much goes to pastor salary, staff salaries, building costs, etc...)
Pastor Scott: “We are a member of the ECFA which helps us have a high standard of financial integrity and transparency. We have a financial board that approves the church budget, makes decisions on church purchases, and sets benefits for the staff. In 2018, our general giving was $2,780,876. For our 2019 budget, 51% of the budget went to staff compensation, 17% to mortgages and rentals, and 11% to missions. We provide a financial report for the church each year.”
4. Which denomination does your church align with the most, if any?
Pastor Scott: “We are non-denominational and don't have an affiliation with any denomination.”
5. Is your church's pastor available for other questions or comments regarding the church, its doctrines, etc.?
Pastor Scott: “Yes, I'm happy to answer any other questions that you may have.”
6. How is your church's doctrinal flexibility and tolerance regarding minor, non-essential doctrines? If a member has a disagreement with the pastor or leadership on a certain doctrine, how is it handled?
Pastor Scott: “We work really hard to keep the main things the main things and have great flexibility over non-essential doctrines. We are strong on the major doctrines: the authority of the Bible, salvation by grace through faith, etc. We want to keep the focus on Jesus. We allow for charitable disagreement on non-essential matters.”
7. Does your church require that its members be baptized? What is your church's official position on baptism?
Pastor Scott: “We don't have membership. We do encourage all followers of Jesus to get baptized. We teach and practice believer's baptism by immersion. Baptism is an important moment in the life of a believer, and we celebrate it as a church family.”
8. Please describe what a typical service and/or meeting looks like in your church.
Pastor Scott: “Our typical service is 65 minutes. We typically have four worship songs, prayer, a 30-minute sermon, and may highlight some things God is doing at the church. We try to make our services very welcoming for people new to Alpine.”
Note: Alpine Church's sermons are topical, not verse by verse studies through the Bible. To watch a sermon from Alpine, go to their YouTube Channel here.
9. How many people do you have on staff at your church, both paid and volunteer?
Pastor Scott: “As of early 2019, we have 15 full time staff and 15 part time staff. We don't have volunteer staff members. But we do have volunteers who play crucial leadership roles in the church.”
10. What is the pastor's educational history?
Pastor Scott: “This varies depending on the pastor. I received a MDiv from Western Seminary in Portland, OR. Some of our pastors have a seminary education. Others have Bible college education. Some didn't go to either Bible college or seminary and were raised up in leadership through our church.”
11. How does the church discipline its members with their sin?
Pastor Scott: “We try and follow the pattern of Matthew 18:15-17. Most issues are resolved through a one-on-one meeting. Many others are resolved by involving a few other selected people like Jesus outlines in Matthew 18. We try to give room for the Holy Spirit to work in people's hearts while pointing them to the Bible's teaching on repentance and forgiveness.”
12. How is the pastor compensated (income, benefits, bonuses, etc.)?
Pastor Scott: “Full time staff receive a salary, medical benefits, and retirement.”
(Here is another question that I didn’t feel was really answered, so I sent a follow-up email to try and get a clearer answer. I include that follow-up email below).
13. What is the size of your church and any other space the church owns for meetings and church services?
Pastor Scott: “Do you mean the size of the church on a Sunday? I believe right now that would be about 2,600 across all of our locations. The church owns 5 buildings and rents two others. Our church services range in size from 75-300.”
While I appreciate and am very grateful for the fact that Pastor Scott responded to our Questionnaire at all, I did want more clear answers regarding finances and tithing, so I emailed him again to see if I could get that. Below is my follow-up email and Pastor Scott’s response.
Email me if you'd like to see a copy of Alpine Church's 2019 Financial Report.