A look at one of Hollywood’s thriving Millennial-focused churches: Basileia Hollywood, average age 26
“Basileia Hollywood may be the only church in America where a celebrity can get up to visit the restroom and have his seat stolen by a homeless guy.”
-Overheard one Sunday
The Basileia Vision
by David Ruis
The vision for Basileia Hollywood is best summed up in two sentences: “Friends sharing life, faith, and resources.” And, “We come together, because we can’t make it alone.”
“Friends sharing life, faith, and resources.” Basileia’s posture is that of “sharing.” This is quite different from that of simply “giving.” One can give of time, money and talent, and be quite disengaged in the ensuing transaction. Distant even.
To share is to be involved. To share redefines the way we handle our possessions. To share redefines the way we live out our faith in all contexts. Sharing life, faith and resource together requires a vulnerability and transparency that is only born of the fruit of the Spirit at work in community. Sharing demands of us a meekness as we engage in cultural and systemic change in the society around us. We have set our compass here. It most certainly challenges us to swim upstream in the cultural milieu of LA/Hollywood, but we must turn our hearts towards this type of journey. (Acts 4:32-35; Galatians 5:19 – 6:10)
“We come together, because we can’t make it alone.” For the Basileia Community it impossible to flesh out these realities without building missional community. Relationships are central. One thing we love to say is, “We come together, because we can’t make it alone.” Our resident theologian, Dr. Don Williams says it this way in his commentary on Galatians, Celebrate Your Freedom: “the truth of the gospel will be manifested in the quality of our relationships.” (p. 130)
Friendship is at the heart of it all. Jesus was known as the “friend of sinners” (Matthew 11:19) and makes the stunning declaration that He does not relate to us as “servants” but as “friends.” (John 15) He also states that there is “no greater love” than the love of one laying down their life for that of a “friend”. As we engage in our worship and step into the missional call of Christ upon us, we want to be a people marked by friendship, both with God and with each other.
Life. Faith. Resource. We want to bring it all to the table in surrender to the work of the Holy Spirit. Growing in our security that God is a good Father, and “our” Father, Jesus invites us to lay it all down, only to see it all resurrected again for His glory and the establishment of His kingdom. This really get’s us excited at Basileia.
We are all part of a bigger dream. God’s dream for LA and the world. A dream that involves us through the power of God’s Spirit going to “proclaim this message: ‘The kingdom of heaven is near” and to “heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse those who have leprosy” and to “drive our demons.” As freely we have received, we are to freely give. (Matthew 10:7-8)
Our whole lives are surrendered here. Our faith finds it’s fullest vibrancy and expression here, for a faith that is not in motion is a dead faith. Our resources of time, money and talent are well spent in embracing the call to seek first His kingdom and it’s justice, no matter what our lives end up being in His hands. (Matthew 6:33)
So, as we like to say around Basileia, “Welcome to the journey.”