The Wayside Mission is to help every man, woman and child in Greater Austin find the Way to God through faith in Jesus Christ.
In the 1880s, Austin was a dark city, literally. During that same era, men like Thomas Edison and George Westinghouse were proclaiming the gospel of electricity and electrical lighting systems to cities across the country. In 1894, in order to illuminate its dark streets, the City of Austin purchased 31 used "moon towers" from Detroit. These 165-foot-tall towers would each brighten a 1,500-foot radius enough to read a pocket watch. Austin is the only city in the world known to still have moon towers, with 17 of the original 31 still standing throughout the city.
The Wayside Vision is to establish Wayside Communities throughout Greater Austin. These Communities will serve as spiritual “moon towers,” reflecting the light of God’s glory and truth into every neighborhood in the region so that every man, woman and child can find the Way to God through faith in Jesus Christ.
SHORT-TERM VISIOn – Establish One Community
Our short-term vision is to launch Wayside Communities Church in NW Austin. Our plan is to begin public worship services on September 25, 2016, in NW Austin. Even though we'll be meeting in NW Austin, we hope to draw people in from all over Greater Austin, and will encourage the formation of Wayside Groups that focus on neighborhoods outside of NW Austin. These Groups could potentially become “seedbeds” for new Wayside Communities in different parts of the city. Furthermore, we'll begin actively developing leaders from the outset in order to have a spiritually healthy congregation and a sufficient pool of leaders to launch new Wayside Communities and Groups down the road.
LONG-TERM VISION – Establish Thirty-One Communities
Our long-term vision is to establish thirty-one Wayside Communities throughout Greater Austin. This would essentially create a “multi-site” church structure. The Wayside Communities would each reflect the demographic make-up of their own respective neighborhoods within Greater Austin (reflecting our diversity in Christ), while remaining vitally connected to the other Communities within Wayside Communities Church (reflecting our unity in Christ). Certain aspects of Wayside would be centralized, like business office, finances, and overall leadership (i.e., the elder board), while other aspects, like weekly worship services, neighborhood outreach, and local preaching and pastoral care, would remain decentralized.