Kara Kahnke (left) poses with Scott Jeffries (right).

Kara Kahnke (left) poses with Scott Jeffries (right).

By: Kara Kahnke

Scott Jeffries came to City Square at the invitation of his sister and brother-in-law. Scott grew up Methodist, but said previous church experiences made him apprehensive. “I would get very nervous about what people were thinking about me or how they were looking at me. I didn’t want to experience that anymore.”

After about a year of declining to come to City Square, Scott finally decided to give it a try. What he found surprised him. His nervousness disappeared in such an accepting congregation. “We are all different, yet we are able to come together,” he said.

Scott praised City Square’s strong community focus. City Square tithes 10 percent of its income to a different local charity each quarter, and makes an effort to remind church goers to be active in giving back. City Square currently has a “deep listening” committee evaluating how the church can be more effective in the Coronado neighborhood that surrounds it. Committee members survey people and businesses in the neighborhood to find out what’s important to them and to make new connections. The committee hopes that this project will help City Square understand every part of the Coronado community. “I really do believe that this message of community focus is the truth,” Scott said.

Although he didn’t always have the most positive experience with church growing up, Scott did enjoy going to United Methodist Outreach Ministry with his mother to feed the homeless. “That was probably the first time I had a faith connection with my mom, the church, and the community,” he said. He believes the connection he felt between church and community is part of what makes City Square so meaningful to him.

Scott said someone coming to City Square for the first time would find it different from traditional churches because traditions and rituals are less emphasized. Although he finds a certain amount of comfort in predictability, at City Square, his comfort comes from the congregation and the knowledge that the church is having a true impact. “It’s truly a congregation and community-focused church and movement,” he said.