Haywood Street Congregation
Haywood Street Congregation is a church in downtown Asheville where all people, without exception, are welcomed and affirmed of their sacred worth. Haywood St. is a transformative open community of Christ, led by the Holy Spirit, creating opportunities to serve and be served so that all who participate are empowered to claim their identity as a Child of God.Affiliation: Methodist
Haywood Street Congregation is a church in downtown Asheville where all people, without exception, are welcomed and affirmed of their sacred worth.
We strive to follow the example of Christ who sought relationship with individuals that others dismissed as not worthy of redemption. We embrace diversity in the community and world, including the diversity of race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender identity, age, faith history, ability and disability, housed and yet-to-be housed, economic status, marital status, health status and family configurations. Love of each Child of God is the foundation of Haywood Street.
We seek reconciliation with each Child of God and invite those who have known the pain of exclusion and discrimination within a church to join us. We recognize differences of opinion and seek to understand in light of Christ’s teachings. All are welcome in Haywood Street’s journey toward greater understanding and mutual respect.
We are committed to the reconciliation of each person as a Child of God and declare ourselves to be an Open and Affirming, Reconciling congregation.
Core programs include weekly worship, a clothing closet, community garden, a free community lunch known as the Downtown Welcome Table, and Haywood Street Respite, which offers a safe place for adults experiencing homelessness to stay on a short term basis after being discharged from a hospital. Those who eat and worship together at Haywood Street are individuals carrying all their worldly possessions in ragged backpacks as well as privileged professionals, stay-at-home moms, students and the working poor.
The core programs provide a platform for the ministry of relationship, which can be defined simply as the act of “being with” and speaks to our deepest identity. It contrasts with “doing for” and requires spending time together, talking and listening, serving and being served, giving and receiving. It forms the basis for our unique and transformative companion ministry.