WELCOME.We're glad you're here.
WE EXIST TO Create Communities that encourage questions & inspire each other to love like Jesus
We live this out by holding to these five values:
Compelled by God’s love, we remove barriers in order to welcome all people into God’s community
Freed from shame by God’s grace, we offer one another truth and our true selves, both our weaknesses and strengths
Awed by God’s grandeur and mystery, we depend on God fully while holding convictions humbly
Captivated by God’s self-revelation, we seek
wisdom by asking questions, wrestling with Scripture,
and learning from many voices
Inspired by the passion of Jesus, we share the burdens of others, and put love into action
Based on the biblical call to “love the sojourner,” our vision as a church is not to be a church for those who have “arrived” and have things “all figured out,” but a church for those on a journey, who don’t feel quite at home, who are seeking and searching. Watch the video and learn more about what this vision is all about!
WHAT TO EXPECT
Sunday service at Great Road Church is a place to rejoice, revive, and rest. It’s a casual environment where a diverse community will welcome you warmly without pressuring you about anything. The 10am service is about 70 minutes, with vibrant worship that points us to Jesus, prayer as a community, and thoughtful and practical teaching rooted in the Scriptures. Children are welcome in service and kids up to grade five are invited to participate in Trailblazers. Stay after service for refreshments and connection with others.
We hope you can come and find strength in following Christ.
Frequently asked questions
Are you connected to a denomination?
We are a part of the Covenant Church, a multiethnic denomination in the United States and Canada with ministries on five continents of the world. Founded in 1885 by Swedish immigrants, the Covenant values the Bible as the word of God, the gift of God’s grace and ever-deepening spiritual life that comes through a faith with Jesus Christ, the importance of extending God’s love and compassion to a hurting world, and the strength that comes from unity within diversity. The Covenant strives to be “biblical, but not doctrinaire”; “evangelical, but not exclusive”; “traditional, but not rigid”; and “congregational, but not independent.” Our church was also planted through the Highrock Network of Churches that envisioned locally-focused congregations throughout Greater Boston that serve and seek to build trust with their local communities and cities. This vision remains with us today as we seek to serve and build trust with the town and people of Acton.
What do you hold in common as a church?
Our mission as a local church is to welcome all people, especially those far from God or who’ve experienced hurt from the church, into a community where together we can walk the way of Jesus. This posture of welcome calls us to be a community that graciously embraces diversity and difference. Our goal is to build wells, not fences. To experience unity, not uniformity. Consistent with the tradition of Pietism that birthed our denomination, our unity as a people is rooted in a common experience of God’s grace and love in Christ, a commitment to put God’s self-revelation in Jesus as witnessed to in the Scriptures at the center of our lives, a dependence on Christ’s Spirit, and investment in Christ’s mission in the world. This shared life in Christ allows us to recognize and transcend our theological differences, extending freedom to one another on controversial matters where we differ in biblical interpretation and the discernment of God’s will.
What does it mean to put the word of God at the center?
Jesus is the word of God, and we come to know him and his ways through the scriptures. Our emphasis is not on a particular doctrine of scripture, but on the way God can use the scriptures to encounter us and transform us. At the center of every service is a reading of scripture followed by a message that seeks to wrestle, ask questions, interpret and apply the scripture, using it as a guide to illuminate our lives. We study and discuss the scriptures further in Bible studies and small groups. We do all this with humility, acknowledging our limits as interpreters who need to keep growing in understanding with an appreciation for the perspective and insights of others.
How do you approach differences?
We achieve unity-in-diversity by practicing what some have called the “third way” approach of Romans 14 and 15. When the early church community faced major disagreements on first-order moral issues that felt essential to their faith and ethnic identities, the apostle Paul called them to welcome one another, honoring their own consciences before God without judging others, while prioritizing love, inclusion, and unity over insisting my siblings in Christ see things the exact same way as me. Our very capacity to love across such differences is part of our witness to the reconciling power of the gospel. Living out this “third way” practically means recognizing and trusting the work of the Holy Spirit in my faith siblings, relating to one another with humility and curiosity, and a commitment to treat one another with grace, love, and respect.
Are you an inclusive community for LGBTQ+ persons?
Because of our third way approach, members and leaders have all different takes on many significant, contemporary life issues, including sexuality. But this approach also means we welcome all persons into the life of our church, including LGBTQ+ persons and their families, respecting their discernment of God’s calling, whether to marriage or celibacy. LGBTQ+ persons particpate as members, volunteers, leaders, and staff. We are commited to making space for one another and walking alongside all persons – across differences in race, ethnic or national origin, age, gender identity, sexual orientation, physical or mental ability, economic status, education, marital status, and stations in life – encouraging all to prayerfully seek the wisdom of the scriptures in following Jesus.
How do you approach women in leadership?
While people in our congregation may have different understandings of male and female identity and relationships, since our founding as a church, we have celebrated the leadership and contributions of women at every level. We’ve always had female pastors, preachers, worship leaders, and leadership team members. We will encourage and support any woman or girl who senses a call from God to ministry, while also encouraging the whole church to benefit from a female perspective on faith and the interpretation of the scriptures.
What is your approach to baptism?
As a “third way” community we make space for different convictions about how to interpret scripture’s call to baptism. We will baptize infants, and encourage parents to raise their children in the faith eventually seeking confirmation as a teen. We will also honor those who choose to dedicate their child, supporting those parents in raising their children in a life of faith until they come to a point later on where they freely respond to the call of baptism. In both cases, we seek to make a clear pathway for all children to respond to the call of faith and to be baptized by the church, celebrating the promises of Jesus to be their Savior.
How do you talk about marriage at your church?
There are different views on marriage within our congregation. We recognize that both “traditional” and “affirming” biblical interpretations place the marriage covenant at the heart of a sexual ethic. So we affirm that sexual intimacy finds its home in mutual promises of love and faithfulness that mirror and point to Christ’s covenant love for the church. Further, we seek to call all persons, whether in singleness or marriage, to consider how their sexual desire finds fulfillment and direction in relation to God’s eternal covenant with us in Christ. Please contact our lead pastors if you are seeking pre-marital or marital counseling.
Becky Manseau Barnett
Leadership Team Chair