Join us at Sidebar Cafe!

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I don’t want to hear reports of people wandering aimlessly outside of an empty Girls, Inc. building on Sunday afternoon, peering sadly in the windows, weeping softly on the lawn because they can’t get their weekly fix of Jesus and jazz.

So put on your calendar, or tattoo in a prominent place on your body that we will be meeting at SIDEBAR CAFE at 4:30 on Sundays from now on. Or at least until we outgrow the venue and have to rent Regions Field. The address is 2929 7th Avenue South. Here is a map. You can see pics of the new venue above.

We’re going to do two “preview” services in the new place on October 19 and 26. Now, preview does not mean, “Oh, I’ll sit at home and watch my complete series of Bonanza DVDs on Sundays.” It means we need all hands on deck to work out the bugs and show hospitality to folks in our new neighborhood! (Yes, I know—now you have the theme music stuck in your head.) Please feel free to invite folks to the preview services!

Our goal is to get 100 people to our first launch service on November 2. So invite, invite, invite!

We have four (4) work areas each Sunday where we need partners to step up and help:
1) Worship helpers
2) Greeters and hospitality folks
3) Kids area set-up
4) Tech and physical set up

You can click the big button below to sign up to help!

Sign Up Now!



We will be worshiping at 10:30 AM this Sunday! Doing what most other churches do seems weird to me now, but it means we have the afternoon free to do service projects all over the city. 

Magic City Miracle begins at 12:00 at Linn Park. There is a check-in, picnic, rally and send off. You can bring your lunch or buy from one of the food trucks there. Parking is free at Boutwell Auditorium, just north of Linn Park. The first 1000 volunteers get a free T-shirt if they bring a canned food item.

Here are the direct sign up links for projects Saint Junia peeps are doing: 
Ruffner Mountain  (landscaping)
Magic City AIDS Walk (event help)
Girls, Inc. (yard work, landscaping, painting)
Woodlawn Health Fair (event help)
Art4All (all-ages art project)

I know you Saint Junia folks are often involved in service projects of one sort or another. Thanks for all you do!

Who is Cyrus?

Several folks have asked me about the title of the last sermon in our sermon series. “Who is Cyrus?” they ask. Cyrus the Great was the King of Kings, the Emperor of Persia.



…is NOT Cyrus the Great. This is Xerxes, Emperor of Persia, attempting to conquer Greece. He was a relative of Cyrus the Great.

Only, it’s not really Xerxes, either. It’s a Hollywood interpretation of the comic book 300. But I share it because this is how movies depict villains.

In the Bible, Xerxes marries Esther, and she helps save her people from a plot to kill them. When we want to show Xerxes as a good guy, we show him like this:

Xerxes & Esther in One night with the king 2006 film

I share these images, though, because how we portray god-like emperors today is relevant to how we understand the word Messiah, or Christ, one who is anointed or chosen by God to be a champion of God’s people.

This is Cyrus:



…and this Sunday at 4:30, we’ll talk about how this non-Jewish anti-hero came to be called a messiah.

Love Your Neighbor

Being a disciple is all about learning how to love God and love your neighbor. Every week during communion we pray to God, “that we may be, for the world, the Body of Christ, redeemed by his blood.” We’ve got two great opportunities to put your love of neighbor into action this month!

The first is a picnic at Bessie Estelle Park on Saturday, Sept. 20 from 2-7 PM. Bring a potluck dish, lawn chairs, and/or a yard game. The second is Magic City Miracle, on Sunday, September 28. Saint Junia is sponsoring several projects around the city. You can sign up for both of these events below.

Picnic at Bessie Estelle Park 

Saint Junia and Church of the Reconciler are partnering to host a picnic this Saturday, September 20, from 2-7 PM. We’ll meet at Bessie Estelle Park, at 901 8th Avenue S. Here is a map.

If you can provide a dish or a yard game, click this link to sign up and tell us what you will bring!

Dave is building a wiffle ball launcher for the occasion. 50 mph top speed. Yeah, baby!

Magic City Miracle is Here!

More than a thousand people volunteered for last year’s Magic City Miracle, and we’re looking at doing it again this year. Even cooler is that 10% of the people who participated were not affiliated with a church. We invite everyone to join in what God is already doing!

Saint J is sponsoring projects at four sites around the city: Girls, Inc., Ruffner Mountain, Magic City AIDS Walk, and Social Venture in Woodlawn. You can sign up online here (though not all the projects are listed yet).

There are already 900 people signed up. Sign up soon if you want a T-shirt, and invite a friend!

Areas of Discipleship


Bathsheba: The Rest of the Story

Worship this past Sunday was AMAZING, but you don’t have to take my word for it—you can view the video archive here.

This upcoming Sunday is the second in our series “Bad Guys and Anti-Heroes,” and I’ll get to share how Bathsheba is like Olivia Pope (from the TV series Scandal). The powerful men in their lives may actually be the least interesting thing about them. Both are clever—sneaky may be a better word. But I look forward to sharing how these antiheroes become heroes.

Come and invite a friend!