Monday, April 30, 2012

Faith...acts, even in small ways

I bought a boat today.  Then I went to Wal-Mart to get some life jackets and a paddle so we would be all legal on the inaugural boat ride with the girlies!  There I bumped into two of our awesome young Jesus following leaders at theCityChurch.  After a great convo (and prayer) in the marine section of Wal-Mart, I went to the check out.

The boat cushion I was buying didn't have a bar code on it.  So the cashier called for the manager to go check the price.  He took some time.  So I struck up a conversation with young woman helping me. She seems really cool.  She's been married a year - I congratulated her.  As our time wrapped up, I handed her one of these little tickets shown above and below, and told her she was invited...

When I got home, it was too late for a boat ride.  So, we watched an I Love Lucy episode, then during that
I got a phone call, from a number I didn't have in my phone.  These calls can sometimes be people with my voice wasn't so super happy.  I didn't recognize the voice, and there was a moment of tension...I thought it was a lady I turned down for a job, actually.

Then she told me she was the lady I just gave the card to.  And she was so happy I did.  She was inspired by the faith I displayed in handing her that card.


I don't give these cards out to strangers very often.  But sometimes I follow the little prompting, and go, Yeah!

I pray she and her husband have a great night.  Congratulations on One Year Married!

What, maybe small, acts of walking out your faith is God prompting you to take today?

It's how the city gets different!

Love, paul

p.s. I'm so serious - i want to hear your story!

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Jesus' Brand is Freedom

UPDATE: KPLCTV ran a story on us here.  
And the American Press ran it on Friday on the top of Page 1 - we are so Grateful To Both!  The new about Freedom is so compelling - we come with the longing for it hard-wired  from God!

We issued this Press Release Yesterday - Thank you to the media outlets that tell the story of those who have no voice!

The Freedom Film showing is Today at Sowela, 1:30.  I'm praying that people see Jesus for who he really is.

PRESS RELEASE from theCityChurch, Lake Charles
Tuesday, April 24, 2012 
New Local Church Joins Mission to End Modern Slavery

After hearing that are 27 million people enslaved around the world, a shocking story, a new local church in Lake Charles, theCityChurch, decided to take action and constructed an 8 foot wide Freedom Display to tell the story of the enslaved.  theCityChurch’s leader, Paul Pettefer, says, “One of the things theCityChurch does is stand up for people who have no voice, the very least of these.  There are 27 Million people enslaved around the world today, more than at any time in human history.  From forced labor in an Indian rice mill to young women lured across national borders and forced into prostitution, modern slavery is an injustice that must end, now!  We are joining in the movement to abolishing slavery in our generation, because people should never be for sale!” 

Last week the display was set up at the New Ranch at McNeese and ended the week with a unifying multi-church gathering for students on Thursday night to champion the cause of Freedom.  For more information on the multi-church gathering visit, and look for the April 9th post titled “Dreams Realized.” Video and pictures are also on their Facebook Page
Last week the display was set up at the New Ranch at McNeese and ended the week with a unifying multi-church gathering for students on Thursday night to champion the cause of Freedom.  For more information on the multi-church gathering visit, and look for the April 9th post titled “Dreams Realized.” Video and pictures are also on their Facebook Page
Paul continued, “We picked the motto, ‘The City Should Be Different’ because we want the measure of our success to be, ‘Is our city better off because we are here?’”    There are additional pictures and video on the church’s Facebook page,

Freedom is a compelling message that crosses many boundaries, and the Freedom Display carries this message with a “Freedom” graffiti image across its rusted tin back.  The front of the display shows a faux jail-cell.  Inside and around the display are signs telling of the reality of modern-day slavery, cutouts of people representing slaves, and small displays of products that have slave labor in the supply chain (beans, bricks, chocolate, coffee, electronics, etc.).  

This week the Freedom Display is up at Sowela, behind the Electro-Mechanical Building, with smaller displays around the campus.  There will be a screening of theFreedom Film Thursday at 1:30 in the campus library for students who are interested.  The Freedom Film is a 30 minute documentary of three individuals who were trafficked and held as human slaves, and how people who took the risk to care and get engaged brought Freedom to these three precious lives.

theCityChurch is encouraging people to start their exploration and response to this human disaster at  This site contains TheFreedom Film, a response guide to the film, and a host of links and other resources.  People can get informed and then, most importantly, get engaged by learning, giving, hosting the Freedom Film, praying, and more.  The 72 Days website is hosted by a national group, Passion Conferences,
theCityChurch also created a Freedom T-Shirt, and is giving them away to the first 100 people who donate $15 at  The donation does not pay for the shirt. The church is giving the shirt as a tangible expression of their gratitude for those who engage in this cause.  People can donate at the church’s weekly gathering at Stellar Beans Coffee, 319 Broad St, 10:45 on Sunday mornings or contact the church and bring a phone with the email receipt to receive a shirt. 
theCityChurch is willing to bring the display and Freedom Film to other sites to tell the story of the 27 million whose voices are kept in hopeless silence by their captors.  Paul Pettefer, Church Planter, says, “We would love to bring the Freedom Display and the message of freedom anywhere people want us.  Just let us know – we’ll be there!” 

Paul Pettefer, Church Planter at theCityChurch, said, “We believe that people should never be for sale!  Jesus said that those who follow Him should love each other and should love the very least of these just like we love Jesus.”

Paul also notes, “We want to model a lifestyle of personal involvement that spans from global to local - with worldwide issues such as or child sponsorship through Compassion International ( as well as engagement right here in our city, where we participate in activities such as supporting children at local schools, tutoring kids at, connecting people and churches in our city, and other feet-on-the-ground actions.”

The website for theCityChurch is

theCityChurch would love for you to have news coverage of the Freedom Display and tell the story of 72DaysForFreedom.  Please call/text Paul Pettefer anytime I can be of service, 794-9891, or  We are more than happy to be interviewed or provide additional pictures or video


Monday, April 9, 2012

Dreams Realized (Lake Area Collegiate Alliance)

It's one thing to want the church to be united, and have cooperation between churches.

It's another thing to see it happen.

This past January, six churches traveled together to Atlanta for Passion 2012.  We stopped in Mobile and had a night to worship and hang.  130 students.  What a great night!  At the end of the Passion event, we all wanted to have more of this - so we committed to having a regular public worship gathering on campus, and now that time has come!

Thursday, April 19, 7 pm, New Ranch* BAKER AUDITORIUM (in Farrar) at McNeese.
* PLEASE NOTE: McNeese asked us to move from New Ranch to Baker after we printed the cards, etc.  We're young people, right, we can handle change!!!

Welcome to the Lake Area Collegiate Alliance!  We're now 7 churches, and we going to Passion 2013, with at least 220 going this trip.  At Passion, we rallied around the cause of the 27 million people currently enslaved around the world.  We will bring that theme to our first MSU combined gathering.

We are setting up a display to bring awareness and action for the cause of the enslaved around the world.  The display will be in the New Ranch, so we decided to hold the worship gathering there as well.  theCityChurch is leading the creation of the display, but all the churches can use it to generate conversations with students, encouraging them to stand up for the plight of the enslaved!

Here is the push card for the week:

One of the 7 churches, theCityChurch (who hosts theCityShouldBeDifferent) is printing a t-shirt and will give them away to students who donate at least $15 directly to
The 7 churches who are currently part of this coalition
Jesus is the radical who stands up for the cause of the poor and the oppressed.
We follow Jesus, so we will do the same!

Rock On!

If you have questions or want info about this, you can contact paul pettefer, call/text 794-9891,, or Tim Robles,, or any of the college ministers at these churches.

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Good Friday...1st Anniversary of Paul's Dad's Body Death

My daddy, Clay Pettefer died last year on Good Friday. Earlier that day, I recorded this video,, about how sometimes the worst day of your life turns out to be the best day. That night, my awesome dad died (His life in pictures, with narration, the testimony of his faith by Miles Mitchem, and my short talk about my Dad are on

When it's Friday (the day Jesus was executed for everyone else's crimes), we can't have to look for the Resurrection that's coming! I'm serious, DON'T QUIT! Look to Jesus, even when the bodies are dead and in the ground!

This is why the Non-Religious Easter matters...Jesus is no longer dead, he rose from the dead - Easter!

Hang out with theCityChurch Easter Morning at Stellar Beans Coffee, Downtown, 319 Broad St., 10:45 am.


P.S. The Non-religious Easter was great!  We'll post our video of the talk soon.  The entire gathering is recorded on (the first song is very quiet - we turned the mic up after that!)

Friday, April 6, 2012

Easter is not religious

 Easter is still here because...

Well, let's say it like this: It's not religious.  Easter is not about ceremony, and a series of activities that people normally associate with religion, such as worship services, and the big supper with the family.

Easter is because Jesus' followers said they saw Him, alive...AFTER He was crucified.  And they saw the crucification.

Jesus' movement didn't have any power on the earth.  His followers were few, poor and not in any position of power, not religious, political, military, or cultural power.

Yet the movement Jesus started took off and in 300 years, essentially conquered the Roman Empire without firing a shot or swinging a sword.


Because on Easter, Jesus' followers claimed to have seen something unbelievable...

If you don't have a church you are regularly involved with, please come and check out the Non-Religious Easter with theCityChurch, Easter Sunday, 10:45 am, Stellar Beans Coffee, 319 Broad St.


Paul Pettefer
Church Planter
call/text 794-9891

Sunday, April 1, 2012

YOU are the Movement...Jesus started, then gave to us

We really believe that if the church is going to fulfill the mission God gave us, that the church, the whole church, has to engage and realize that YOU are the Movement!

It's not the person on the stage, leading the church gatherings that does the ministry of the church.  

You read that right.  

Don't believe me?  Let's see what the Apostle Paul said, 
11 Now these are the gifts Christ gave to the church: the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, and the pastors and teachers. 12 Their responsibility is to equip God’s people to do his work and build up the church, the body of Christ. Ephesians 4:11-12, New Living Translation 
There are leaders that God gives to the church, a gift Paul calls it, and their jobs are to equip the people of God to do His work, or the ministry!  

To be sure, the leaders God gave to the church, Apostles, Prophets, Evangelists, Pastors and Teachers - they are legit and needed and do ministry!  Many people who are frustrated at church and are bitter (or on the road to bitter) are in that condition because they didn't want to follow these leaders God gave to the church.  Or when there was a difference of opinion, something other than love and unity came from their heart toward the leaders.  So, I'm totally affirming the roles of leadership in the Church!

Here's the deal: if you follow Jesus, then the movement Jesus left in our hands belongs to YOU!  It's not just "up there at the church."  It's not just "pastor will take care of that."  It's You, and Me, and the Pastor. We all have a part.  We all have times we are leading, and time we are willing followers! 

You, Jesus-follower...You are the Movement!

At our church, we are having all the people who have been following Jesus for a little while and who are willing stand in front and share their story and teach from the Bible to our church.  We can do this more easily than some churches because we don't have a huge group.  But the point is the same either way.  

Today, Diana Castelberry is leading us through James 4 - and I'm so pumped.  

And Tara Coleman will share on what it means to be a willing follower of Jesus!  And how much more energizing it is to lead when you have a willing follower.  

If you have transferred your trust to Jesus, then you are a part of His Church...You are the Movement!