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  • What will be the new church’s name? Grace City Church
  • What is the address of the new church? 5055 Governor Drive, San Diego, CA 92122
  • What is the mission and vision of the church?
    • Mission: To equip people with the Gospel for everyday life.
    • Vision: To be a church for our city that seeks new life in Jesus.
  • Who is First Baptist Church of San Diego (FBCSD)? 150 years ago, a handful of people met in a small room in what would later become downtown San Diego and began a great adventure. They knew that our city needed to know Jesus and the freedom that the gospel provides. They understood that our call was not to be religious, but to change the world by loving God and loving others. They went forward in faith and planted The First Baptist Church of San Diego. In the years that followed, FBC grew and planted churches all over San Diego. Throughout San Diego history, FBC has been an important resource for hope and help for all of our city. For the past 40 years, FBC has gathered in University City with the same vision of the gospel for this community and our great city. FBC continues to raise up generations in Christ to change their world.
  • Who is Grace City Church? In 2015, Randall Tonini moved to San Diego with his family in search of a location to plant a new church through Stadia. God led him to plant Grace City Church in University City; an extremely transient location with 97% of the population being unchurched. Grace City started with the vision of being a church for the city that seeks new life in Jesus. This meant building relationships with the community through local events and neighborhood meetings, desiring to tangibly love the city with no strings attached. Small backyard Bible studies, worship, and prayer were the humble beginnings of what would turn into weekly gatherings of hundreds, doing the same thing. Grace City launched its first Sunday service at University City High School on October 4, 2015, with the support of Momentum Christian Church and Rise City Church. Grace City celebrated its first baptism on Valentine’s Day of 2016, and has since seen over 50 people pronounce faith in Jesus through baptism. God has grown Grace City to be a place where people of all cultures, ages, and backgrounds come together to be equipped with the gospel for everyday life, and who are then sent out to share the hope of the gospel wherever God has placed them. 
  • How did this strategic alliance idea come about? In February 2019, the leadership of Grace City Church was approached by the leadership of First Baptist Church of San Diego to pray about the possibility of the two becoming one church. The question asked was, “could we be better together to reach our city with the gospel?” From that point, through much prayer, reading, meetings, and outside advisors, the leadership of both churches came to the conclusion that God is at work and that they would be better together. 
  • Who will be on the new church staff?
    • Randall Tonini (Grace City) 
    • Scott Furrow (FBC)
    • Billy Kilmer (Grace City)
    • Bo Harris (FBC)
    • Brooke Law (Grace City)
    • Jill Colon (FBC – Interim Kids Director)
  • Who will preach at Sunday Gatherings? We will have a teaching team made up primarily of Randall and Scott.
  • What are the doctrines and distinctive beliefs of the church? See gracecitysd.com/beliefs for a detailed explanation of our doctrines and distinctive beliefs.
  • What time will the services be? Sundays at 10:30AM until we are ready to move to two services at 9AM and 11AM.
  • What is the timeline and procedure for the Strategic Alliance?
      • Sunday, Sept. 22 @ 5PM – Better Together Night at FBC
      • Sunday, Sept. 29 @ 5PM – Better Together Night at FBC
      • Saturday, Oct. 5 @ 10AM-2PM – Volunteer Training at FBC
      • Saturday, Oct. 12 @ 6PM – Prayer and Worship Night at FBC
      • Sunday, Oct. 13 @ 10:30AM – First Sunday Together at FBC
      • Week of Oct. 14-18 – City Group Open Houses
      • Sunday, Nov. 17 – Strategic Alliance becomes official if FBC gets 2/3rd’s vote
  • What kinds of songs will we sing? We’ll continue to have a mix of hymns and contemporary worship music that help the church remember the Gospel. Songs will be chosen to complement the Scripture being preached and help “the word of Christ dwell in you richly.”
  • How long will services be? Approximately 90 minutes, which includes Family Time (a seven minute coffee break to meet new people and build community) and Communion (a time to reflect on and respond to Jesus’s sacrifice for us).
  • What is the financial status of both churches?
    • FBCSD: Currently FBC has a balanced budget but still has $200,000 left to pay on a loan for the faciltity. There are also some deferred maintenance projects and updates that will need to be taken care of at a later date.
    • G/C: From the beginning the Grace City, staff has raised outside support from donors all over the country. With this new strategic alliance and the current levels of giving at G/C, the church will finally be able to financially support the current G/C staff through local offerings as ministry transitions to becoming one church with one budget. This is a transition that will help the church moving forward to become financially solvent and capable of doing ministry in our city for the foreseeable future.
  • What is the goal for budget and finances moving forward? The goal is to be one church with one budget and one bank account.
  • How will I continue my giving? Please continue giving to the church that you are currently a part of and we will give more detail on transitioning giving to one centralized place beginning in January 2020.
  • What will happen to my current membership? Current membership will be dissolved and a new membership process will be introduced once we are ready.
  • What will happen to existing leadership (deacons, team leaders, city groups, etc.)? A new governance system will replace the current structures at FBC. (The new structure must be voted on by FBC members in November.)  The new structure will be adopted from the G/C model and be Elder led, with support teams for the business and operational matters of the church and facility. After an approved strategic alliance vote from FBC, current Deacons from G/C will transfer their deaconship to the new church. New deacons and elders will be raised up with time from the new church.
  • Who will lead the current ministry areas? Are there team leaders? As both churches work toward becoming one healthy church body, we will be diligently working together to make sure that every ministry area is functioning at the highest level. If you would like to help with any of these minstry areas, please join us on October 5th for the volunteer training day! More information can be found on our calendar.
      • Kids – Jill Colon // Cathy Ferrer
      • Youth – Ron de Guzman
      • Production – Oliver Castillo
      • Communications – Sam Carbajal
      • Prayer – Linda Roberts // Nancy Nelson
      • Campus Facilities – Richard Morris
      • Hospitality – Cindy Morales // John Lim
      • Cafe – Jamie Gustafson
      • Men – Ethan Law
      • Missions – Nancy Loomis // Brooke Law
      • Women – Laura Morris // Brooke Law
      • City Groups – Brooke Law
      • Outreach – Brooke Law
      • Parking/Ushers – Eric Holsti // Tommy Morse
  • What will happen to each church’s facilities? Grace City will start meeting at FBC’s facility on October 13th and not renew the lease at UCHS.
  • What will happen to existing ministries at both churches? We will evaluate all of the programming and ministries that are currently in place and see if it fits with the vision of the church going forward.
  • Which missionaries will we still support? We will continue supporting the various missionaries and ministries that each church currently supports as long as they fit with the vision of the church going forward.
  • What will happen to both churches if the vote does not go through for the Strategic Alliance? While we don’t anticipate this happening, we will continue reaching this community as two separate churches under God’s guidance. 
  • Will I have an opportunity to ask questions in person about the Strategic Alliance? Yes, we will be holding several Better Together Nights with opportunities to ask questions of both Randall and Scott.

What are my next steps?

  • Pray
  • Be present (save the date 10-13-19 for first Sunday together)
  • Engage (send questions to questions@gracecitysd.com)
  • Sign up for email updates
  • Follow @gracecitysd on Instagram and Grace City SD on Facebook