At The Bridge, we encourage our community to take personal responsibility for their own health and safety. As during any other time, we ask those who are sick to stay home and join our services via our livestream. We do not require social distancing or masks, and we do not take responsibility for anyone's health or exposure to sickness.
That probably depends on who you ask. 😉 Our fundamental beliefs align with greater Christianity. And by modern Jewish definition, because we believe that Yeshua (Jesus) is the Messiah, we are Christian. But our lives in practice represent Judaism in many ways, including our day of rest, our holidays, and our approach to Scripture. And some of our beliefs, especially those regarding the role of Israel and the Torah in our lives, depart from mainstream Christianity. To read our statement of faith, click -here-. Within Messianic Judaism, there is a spectrum of practice (Shabbat prayer/worship styles, kashrut, roles of men/women, etc.) just as there is within traditional Judaism. Some Messianic congregations look more like a church and some more like a synagogue. We are somewhere in the middle.
As a Messianic congregation, we have a high view of Scripture and the authority of the entire Word of God. We believe that it is all living and active, sharper than a double-edged sword. We believe that the complete fulfillment of the New Covenant will be the writing of the Torah on everyone's hearts, resulting in the perfect observance of Torah in the era to come. And as a community we seek to honor the Lord as we walk out His Word in our lives today. For a much more detailed explanation of our approach to the Torah, please click -here-. If you have any questions, we are happy to share more of our heart on this important topic in person! Come check us out on a Shabbat.
Messianic Judaism refers primarily to Jewish believers in Jesus who continue to practice Judaism. But many people in the Messianic faith are Gentiles, being drawn back to the ancient paths. Many people who attend The Bridge are not Jewish, but they practice Messianic Judaism in imitation of Jesus. We are part of the larger Messianic Jewish movement of Jews and Gentiles worshiping together, and welcome everyone.
Scripture tells us to sanctify the name of God and not to take the name of God in vain. We refrain from using the personal name of God in keeping with the example set for us by Yeshua and the early believers, as well as greater Judaism. For more information about why we don’t use God’s personal name, you can read this article: Let Your Name Be Sanctified.
We have some traditional synagogue liturgy interwoven into our services. Most of it is in English, but some is in Hebrew and then translated. Words are projected on a screen to follow along. For more information about liturgy in worship, see: The Role of Liturgy.
We have an open prayer time before our services, starting at 10:30am. During this time, everyone is welcome to pray in the way that they best connect with the Lord. We provide sheets with an abbreviated version of Shacharit, including some of the most-loved prayers such as the Amidah, Adon Olam, and Ma Tovu. If liturgical prayer is especially meaningful to you, you are welcome to take advantage of this time.
Our music incorporates both Messianic and mainstream Christian praise and worship songs, intentionally chosen for each week. Members are encouraged to be part of the worship team if they are gifted in music!
Our Shabbat day is split into 3 main time periods: Torah Study from 9:30-10:45, Worship Service from 11-12:45, and Oneg from 1-2.
- During Torah Study, we currently do not have any children's ministry.
- During Service, we have a nursery available for children 4 and under. Children 5 and older stay in service with their parents for the first part of service, and then we offer a Shabbat School class during the message.
- During Oneg, we do not provide children's care. The nursery is open for anyone to play in, but is not supervised. Parents are expected to supervise their children during this time.
We don't have a set dress code - you are free to dress as you feel comfortable.
- Men are welcome but not required to wear a kippah or hat as a sign of respect and a reminder of submission to Hashem's authority. Men are also welcome to wear a tallit during prayers and tzitzit on a four-cornered garment.
- Women are also welcome but not required to cover their heads in a feminine fashion. Some woman wear a head covering as an outward symbol of celebration of God's design. Skirts and pants are both fine.
As a congregation, we have two major affiliations. We are proud to be part of the greater community of believers, both in Christianity and Messianic Judaism.
We are a part of the Foursquare movement. We understand that some may be thrown off by our connection with the greater Christian church and have written an article explaining this here: Our Relationship with the Greater Church. Mark and Judy are both credentialed ministers through Foursquare. And as a part of Foursquare we are a registered 501c3 non-profit organization.
We are also a congregational member of The International Alliance of Messianic Congregations and Synagogues (IAMCS). The IAMCS is a subsidiary of the Messianic Jewish Alliance of America (MJAA). The MJAA, founded in 1915, is the largest association of Messianic Jews and non-Jewish believers in Yeshua in the world.