Q: Where are you located?
A: Our offices are currently located at All Saints’ Episcopal Church, 209 W. 27th Street, Austin, TX 78705. This is also the location of Unplugged on the Front Porch. “Pub Church” happens at Scholz Garten, 1607 San Jacinto Blvd, Austin, TX 78701. We do intend to move into a permanent space dedicated to the Front Porch by 2018.
Q: Is this a Christian organization?
A: Our perspective is unquestionably informed by the Christian Tradition–specifically, we are a mission of All Saints’ Episcopal Church. However, we accept that the truth can be reached through a multitude of avenues, and that everyone has their own. We exclude no one on religious grounds.
Q: What are your beliefs?
A: We believe that Jesus was one of the greatest teachers of all time, modeling the truth through dialogue with His disciples. His acceptance of any person who would enter into dialogue with Him, regardless of wealth, health, gender, or social position, inspires us to similarly seek out truth with those who are different from us.
Q: What do you mean by “dialogue?”
A: By dialogue, we mean a conversation that goes deeper than quotidian chatting. We define dialogue as an interpersonal relationship in which all parties sincerely and completely speak their truths, listen sincerely and completely to the truths of others, and work with those others to enable the act of creation which occurs when people have active, honest, and respectful conversation.
Q: Can I go to church there?
A: Yes, but we do not enroll members or ask for “pledges” in any traditional sense, although we do pass around a basket. We encourage all to attend Pub Church on Sunday evenings and see if our “congregation” is a fit for you!
Q: Are you an official nonprofit?
A: Yes. The Front Porch operates as a separate 501(c)(3) from All Saints’. If you’d like to donate to The Front Porch, please click here and follow the instructions. We only exist as a result of generous support from folks like you!
Q: Is there anything for kids?
A: With a few exceptions, most of our programming is kid-friendly. And, of course, The Window is our service corps for teens!
Q: Is it really intellectual?
A: Occasionally it is, yes. But, overall, almost all of our conversations are accessible to folks of all ages and backgrounds.
Q: What if I don’t like to talk?
A: There’s room for introverts, extroverts, and just regular verts on the Porch. You don’t have to talk. All we require is a willingness to listen respectfully.
Q: Is this a bait-and-switch operation?
A: We have no interest in converting folks. We just want folks to gather to celebrate their differences and learn from one another. The Front Porch isn’t so much about answering your questions with absolutes. We’d rather talk and make deliberate, solutions-focused progress through dialogue. While we hope we “convert” you to be open to difference in a Front Porchy way, we’re definitely not trying to get you to come to our secret, regular church somewhere else, either.
Q: Is it like…?
A: Probably not.