January Update: Working Group #3

Working Group #3 was established to develop and implement pathways for every person at Third to integrate into authentic community and to grow to be a mature and fruitful disciple. (Click to return to Strategic Planning homepage.)

Working Group #3 held a Q&A Session on January 15th. Below is the audio from this session. 

Third’s Session approved the creation of a new Parish structure on December 13, 2016. Parishes will provide a flexible structure to enable us to care for one another and unite in mission in our neighborhoods.  We are still working on the details, but are already thinking about community, ministry, and leadership in terms of Parishes.  We are planning to launch our Parishes in January 2018, along with at least one Parish Group in each Parish. 

Brief Overview of Parishes and Parish Groups


  • Every Covenant Partner at Third will automatically be part of a Parish.
  • Parishes will be formed geographically, based on where people live.
  • Each Parish will be comprised of 100-150 people, for a total of 10 Parishes.
  • Parishes will provide more opportunities for Third’s people to love and serve one another and share Christ’s love with their neighbors around them.

Parish Leadership Teams

  • Shepherding Elders, Deacons, and other Parish members will coordinate activities.
  • The Parish leadership team will focus on encouraging, equipping, and coordinating Parish members in loving and serving one another.
  • Parish leaders will also reach out to visitors and new covenant partners to help them connect at Third, assist with crisis situations, and connect Parish members with resources they may need.

Parish Groups

  • Covenant Partners may opt to join a Parish Group in their Parish.
  • Parish Groups consist of 15-30 adults, plus children.
  • Parish Groups follow the UP-IN-OUT model of discipleship.
  • Parish Groups are by definition open to new members, growth, and multiplication. 
  • Parish Groups are united in mission to share the Gospel and love their neighbors.
  • Parish Groups are led by teams of trained leaders with diverse gifts.

For the full background and explanation for the Parish model and FAQ, please read the expanded version of Working Group #3's January Update. 

Questions? Reach out to Jeff Hassler or Corey Widmer.