Coastal Church Builds Bridges Within Van­cou­ver’s Busi­ness Com­mu­nity

New noon-hour ser­vice for pro­fes­sion­als of­fered ev­ery Fri­day

BC Business Magazine - - Coastal Church -

About 8,000 peo­ple walk by the Coastal Church at 1160 West Ge­or­gia Street ev­ery day, Pas­tor Dave Koop es­ti­mates. The church draws ad­mir­ing looks from passersby in down­town Van­cou­ver's bustling busi­ness dis­trict—the ar­chi­tec­ture is strik­ing, and the white lights, up year round, cast a warm, soft light. And while most passersby don't have the time to walk in, Koop says the ones that do come in nearly al­ways re­turn.

“We have tremen­dous foot­print—our walk in score is 98 out of 100,” he says.

Coastal Church is com­prised of a younger con­gre­ga­tion, with a me­dian age of 30, and is non-de­nom­i­na­tional, mul­ti­cul­tural, and wel­comes peo­ple from all walks of life who want to meet other pro­fes­sion­als, or who may have never been to church be­fore.

Koop was a busi­ness­man him­self, a for­mer en­gi­neer­ing con­sul­tant in the oil and gas sec­tor in Al­berta prior to join­ing the Min­istry.

The church is part of Van­cou­ver Board of Trade, and Koop, with his back­ground in busi­ness, wants to build bridges in the busi­ness com­mu­nity in Van­cou­ver.

So Coastal Church has launched a new type of ser­vice, cus­tom­ized for busi­ness peo­ple who have sched­ul­ing con­flicts or fam­ily obli­ga­tions on week­ends. The new ser­vice is of­fered ev­ery Fri­day at lunch hour—be­tween noon and 1 p.m. that in­cludes mu­sic, a wel­com­ing space to eat lunch, and guest speak­ers aimed at mo­ti­va­tion within busi­ness.

“It's a dif­fer­ent en­ergy, a dif­fer­ent au­di­ence, we're off to a great start,” Koop says.

Coastal Church is help­ing to build bridges in the busi­ness com­mu­nity by pro­vid­ing sup­port frame­works for those who may be fac­ing chal­lenges in busi­ness or at home.

The net­work­ing can lead to busi­ness op­por­tu­ni­ties, and small groups meet reg­u­larly in board­rooms to dis­cuss busi­ness, and to find sup­port through chal­lenges.

“That's where they re­ally get en­cour­age­ment, they can share their chal­lenges, the guards come down, a lot of that hap­pens in the small groups—they con­nect and they en­cour­age each other and share busi­ness ideas,” Koop says. “We find it's one of the best so­lu­tions for iso­la­tion.”

Koop says peo­ple in the busi­ness world can ul­ti­mately ben­e­fit from hav­ing faith in their busi­ness and in life, and that the purpose of faith is ban­ish­ing fear, which can then lead to busi­ness ad­van­tages.

Koop says faith can help im­prove fi­nan­cial sus­tain­abil­ity and so­cial de­vel­op­ment in both fam­ily and busi­ness, and it can give clar­ity on de­ci­sions that have to be made.

“Faith is like an an­chor, or a com­pass on the inside,” says Koop. “What we lose when we are fear­ful is our abil­ity to think clearly— what faith does is it re­moves fear so you can have power, you can have clar­ity.”

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