West Angeles Church of God in Christ
West Angeles Church is a 77-year-old congregation serving in the urban center of South Los Angeles. The church was founded in 1943 and has grown to over 25,000 members under the leadership of Charles E. Blake, who was appointed pastor in 1969. The stated mission of West Angeles is to encourage life transformation through its threefold purpose: to evangelize, edify, and equip the whole person to serve the community, and to reach the world for Jesus Christ. As West Angeles grew both numerically and in influence, it became a model for many congregations throughout the denomination of what is possible as they seek to serve the spiritual and physical needs of their communities. Understanding this, Bishop Blake consistently calls our church to share the systems, strategies, tools and ministries implemented by West Angeles so that other congregations may also thrive. Through this project, we aim to equip 30 COGIC congregations with the tools to help them reach unchurched 30-50 year-olds, integrate them into the rhythms of their congregations, and develop them into effective ministry leaders. Over the next five years we will lead these congregations through a process whereby they reflect deeply on their cultural norms and practices as well as the shifting cultural landscape within the cities they serve and implement innovative programs that increase the participation of 30-50 year-olds in the life of their congregations.