In December of 2012, a group of believers came together, called to plant a new work in Birmingham as an extension of Jesus’ final earthly command found in Matthew 28:19-20:

Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.

From the Beginning

Meeting in the basement of our pastor’s home, our small group of 20-30 folks voted and officially launched The Church at Southside in the Southside area of Birmingham on January 6, 2013. We believe we are called to this part of Birmingham to be the hands and feet of Jesus to our neighbors in the heart of the city.

Why The Church at Southside as our name? When looking at how the churches were addressed in the New Testament, they were simply called the Church from their particular city. We love the simplicity that comes with the name and the beauty found in the word Church as we are a part of the bride of Christ.

A New Space

Fast forward to April 1, 2014. With much excitement, we took possession of our new space on Green Springs Highway. Our great God opened up this opportunity in a way we never expected, and after clean up, paint, and renovations, we moved in and launched with our building dedication service in this new location on June 1, 2014.

A Unique Journey

After meeting in our space on Green Springs Highway for a little over 2 years, our pastor sensed a stirring in his heart and began to share some bold thoughts with the leadership team of our small body. Our relationship with the homeless community in our city has grown, and with it, some relationships formed. With much prayer, we decided at the end of our lease to move out of the building and begin a new journey as an outdoor church, specifically meeting in an area close to our friends who are homeless.

NOV 2016MAR 2019
Slide above to see our first Sunday from November 2016 and a recent Sunday from early 2019.

Since the first Sunday of November in 2016, The Church at Southside has met, rain or shine, in Intermark’s parking lot. Every week we offer a warm, home-cooked meal that has been prepared in the homes of our team to any and all who come. After serving and sharing a meal, we have a short service with music and the Word. Our community is invited to actively participate in the service as they feel led as we all worship together. Each week after our service, any who are in need are free to grab a bag of food and supplies for the upcoming week. We hope that you will come and be our guest and worship with us soon!

So what are we all about? In a word: Jesus. That’s it. He is our reason for everything. Because of His finished work on the cross, we can live. And we want everyone to experience the same abundance of life that only comes from Him.

More specifically, we believe God has purposely placed us near the heart of the city of Birmingham to be the hands and feet to those close by.

Our Purpose

To unify in Christ together to reach people with the Gospel (John 17:22-23)

Our Vision

Preparing people to encounter God (Isaiah 40:3 \ Matthew 3:3b)

How? Through evangelism, worship, discipleship, ministry, and fellowship, The Church at Southside wants to model Christ in all we do. We have a heart for the city of Birmingham, the nations, and the least of these. In all things, we put our hope in Jesus and His Gospel to change lives. He is our first love and only hope for all people. We are His Church and we exist for Him. (Matthew 28:18-20 \ Matthew 25:40 \ John 14:6)

We are made up of people from many denominational backgrounds. We each love and respect the different denominations from which we all come. We do have strong beliefs, all of which are centered around Jesus and His Gospel. In a city historically infamous for discord, we choose to unify in Christ alone and the essentials of the Gospel, allowing all else to be considered secondary. What does that look like?

  • We preach Jesus as the only way to a relationship with God.
  • We are called to make disciples, who make disciples, who make disciples to the ends of the Earth.
  • We want to love and minister to all individuals we meet along this journey.

While many feel the city of Birmingham is a lost cause, we believe as the Bluetree song “God of This City” says:  “Greater things have yet to come, and greater things are still to be done in this city!”

The Church at Southside can best be described as a group of people from many different denominational backgrounds who love Jesus and desire to make Him famous. We each love and respect the different denominations from which we all come. But we also have strong beliefs, all of which are centered around Jesus and His Gospel.

God

There is only One true God. He is infinite, perfect, and the Creator and Ruler of all creation. God is three distinct yet equal persons: God the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. (Genesis 1:1, 26-27; 3:22 \ Psalm 90:2 \ Matthew 28:19 \ 1 Peter 1:2 \ 2 Corinthians 13:13)

God the Father

The Father reigns over all that is seen and unseen. He is all knowing, all powerful, and everywhere at all times. To Christ followers, He is the Heavenly Father. (Genesis 1:1, 26-27, 3:22 \ Colossians 1:3-14 \ Galatians 4:6 \ John 14:1-17)

God the Son

Jesus Christ, the Son of God was born of a virgin, lived a sinless human life, yet offered Himself to be crucified on a cross for the sins of people. Three days later, He rose from the dead to demonstrate His power over sin and death. He ascended to Heaven and will return to earth one day to reign as King. (Matthew 1:22-23 \ Isaiah 9:6 \ John 1:1-5, 14:10-30 \ Hebrews 4:14-15 \ 1 Corinthians 15:3-4 \ Romans 1:3-4 \ Acts 1:9, 11 \ 1 Timothy 6:14-15 \ Titus 2:13)

God the Spirit

The Holy Spirit indwells in and through Christ-followers for guidance and understanding spiritual truth. As Christians, we submit to his leading in all things. (2 Corinthians 3:17 \ John 16:7-13, 14:16, 17 \ Acts 1:8 \ 1 Corinthians 2:12, 3:16 \ Ephesians 1:13 \ Galatians 5:25 \ Ephesians 5:18)

God’s Word

Written by human authors, under the supernatural guidance of the Holy Spirit, the Bible is the self-revelation of God to people. It is without error, totally sufficient, and the supreme source of all truth for all matters of life and faith. (2 Timothy 3:16 \ 2 Peter 1:20-21 \ 2 Timothy 1:13 \ Psalm 12:6, 119:105,160 \ Proverbs 30:5 \ Luke 24:25-27)

People

God created mankind in His image and for His glory, as the crowning work of His creation. People are loved by God, yet all are born with a sinful nature that separates us from a sinless God resulting in need of salvation. (Genesis 1:27 \ Psalm 8:3-6 \ Isaiah 53:6A \ Romans 3:23 \ Romans 5:12-21 \ Isaiah 59:1-2)

Salvation

Salvation is God’s redemption of a person from sin. This redemption is offered to people only through faith in Jesus Christ. Salvation is a free gift received by grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ alone. Salvation cannot be lost. It is maintained by the grace and power of God, not man. (Romans 6:23 \ Ephesians 2:8-9 \ John 14:6, 1:12 \ Titus 3:5 \ Galatians 3:26 \ Romans 5:11 Corinthians 15:35-55 \ John 10:29 \ 2 Timothy 1:12 \ Hebrews 7:25, 10:10, 14 \ 1 Peter 1:3-5)

The Church

All who receive salvation in Christ are instantly united to a global community of Christ-followers called The Church. Christ is the head of this church, which exists to glorify God by spreading God’s redemptive truth and discipling believers to mature in Christ-likeness. Although the Church is a worldwide body, it exists in clusters of local fellowship that have been brought together to engage cities. (Acts 2:42-44 \ 1 Corinthians 12:12-26)

Eternity

People were created to exist forever. Those who have trusted Christ as Savior will receive their reward and dwell forever in a real place called Heaven. Those who have not trusted Christ as Savior will spend eternity in a real place called Hell. (John 3:16 \ John 14:17 \ Romans 6:23 \ Romans 8:17-18 \ Revelation 20:15 \ 1 Corinthians 2:7-9 \ Hebrews 9:27-28)

What Our People Have to Say

“[Since coming to The Church at Southside, I’ve learned] that I’m not the low life scum my father told me I was. That in the eyes of God I’m special and loved.”

LUCAS C.

“I’ve learned to not be afraid to be uncomfortable, and that I’m not called to save the world. I’m just called to do what I can to make my little cove a little brighter. I started as an observer, and y’all welcomed me into your family. You knew my name after one week, something that hadn’t happened to me after two years at another church.”

HANNAH B.

“I have been blessed to receive nourishment when needed, encouragement when needed, and overall a sense of hope in my life.”

DERRICK B.

“[Since coming to The Church at Southside, I’ve learned that] I am worthy of His love.”

“Your church means all to me. If y’all didn’t come I wouldn’t be saved today.”

ALICIA M.

“Without this church moved to do what it does, I don’t know where I would have eaten this morning. I have learned that the hardships I face may one day be used to do the Lord’s work.”

DAVID K.

“[Since coming to The Church at Southside, I’ve learned] that I can be a part of something.”

MICHAEL J.

“What keeps me coming back to these gatherings of The Church at Southside is the people of the church actually care.”

BRIAN L.

“God cares about me through you people. Thank you for demonstrating genuine love for God and His people.”

VICKIE H.

“[Since coming to The Church at Southside, I’ve learned that] I matter.”

JESSE W.

“Y’all my family.”

KIKI U.

“[Since coming to The Church at Southside, I’ve learned] that He is not just ‘good’. He is bigger than anything that I am going through.”

KENNY B.

“Even though I am at my lowest time in life, I feel valued and loved. I see God loves me no matter what.”

MELISSA L.

“[Since coming to The Church at Southside, I’ve learned that] God loves EVERYONE no matter what your situation, skin color, or gender, and He forgives us all as well no matter how big or small we think the sin is.”

JANELLA C.

“[Since coming to The Church at Southside, I’ve learned] that I’m not the low life scum my father told me I was. That in the eyes of God I’m special and loved.”

LUCAS C.

“Even though I am at my lowest time in life, I feel valued and loved. I see God loves me no matter what.”

MELISSA L.

“[Since coming to The Church at Southside, I’ve learned] that I can be a part of something.”

MICHAEL J.

“Y’all my family.”

KIKI U.

“What keeps me coming back to these gatherings of The Church at Southside is the people of the church actually care.”

BRIAN L.

“Your church means all to me. If y’all didn’t come I wouldn’t be saved today.”

ALICIA M.

“[Since coming to The Church at Southside, I’ve learned that] I am worthy of His love.”

Our Leadership

We are a different type of fellowship than most, but this doesn’t stop with our gathering place or ways in which we worship. Our leadership model at The Church at Southside is unique, yet Biblical as well. We truly believe Jesus is the Head of our church, and we are the members of His body. Each believer belongs and has value and a voice.

Leadership Team

We lead with a team approach and have ever since our first days as a church plant. While we do have a Pastor and Worship Pastor, we have no paid staff positions at TCAS. Throughout our history, we have had a team made up of men and women that help when decisions have to be made. No one voice matters more than another, and our first step is to always pray, seek, and follow the leadership of Jesus through His Holy Spirit.

Keith & Jamie Akins
Keith & Jamie Akins
Keith serves as Pastor at TCAS. He and Jamie have two children, Morgan and Bradley. Prior to leading at The Church at Southside, they served in various volunteer, bi-vocational, and full time roles in youth & college ministry for 15 years. Having grown up within the church culture, they knew the struggle of settling for the norm and status quo as Christians and church attenders. In 2010 while seeking to live beyond “comfortable,” their family was led to move from their hometown of McCalla, Alabama, to Birmingham’s Southside neighborhood. Their heart and desire for The Church at Southside is to lead in making disciples and ministering to those in the heart of the city with the love of Jesus. The Akins have served in leadership with The Church at Southside since 2012. Check out Keith’s blog here.
Jack & Whitney Anderson
Jack & Whitney Anderson
Jack and Whitney have served on The Church at Southside leadership team since 2014. Jack serves the kingdom in a number of ways, and while it would be easy to mistake Whitney for a courageous leader, her servant’s heart and tasty food can not be missed. They have two daughters being raised in the light. The Andersons were both eager to answer the call and count themselves lucky to have been able to serve the Lord in any capacity.
Jesse & Caroline Crowe
Jesse & Caroline Crowe
Jesse and Caroline have served with The Church at Southside since 2015—Jesse as worship leader and Caroline as cook, server, nursery worker, and wife to Jesse, which is a job in itself! They have been married since 2006 and have two children, Gideon and Tegan. Jesse has an unbelievable gift in leading people in worship. His genuineness is evident, and his desire is to take people beyond a surface level of worship. Caroline loves people and has a heart for the forgotten of our city. She, along with the other wives of TCAS, serve with a mother’s touch and a gentleness that mirrors the heart of Jesus.
Brantley & Meredith Padgett
Brantley & Meredith Padgett
Brantley and Meredith have served on The Church at Southside leadership team since we began back in 2012. They have a daughter, Corah, and a baby boy, Kellen. Brantley is our in-house tech geek and heads up all things media, and Meredith is the design guru, leading both the internal and public-facing design efforts, whether printed or online. While Brantley took a long and winding road to Christ, and Meredith grew up in the Bible belt’s church culture, both have found a home for their family at TCAS.
Beau & Bonnie Wilson
Beau & Bonnie Wilson
Beau and Bonnie came to The Church at Southside in 2017 and joined the leadership team in 2019. They have two children, Carson and Chloe. Their past experiences with international and urban missions drew them to the vision of the “church with no walls” to reach the people of downtown Birmingham by going to them in the inner city—by learning our brothers’ and sisters’ names, their stories, and sharing the greatest story of Christ’s love for all. The Wilsons love worshiping together with a diverse crowd from many walks of life. TCAS is truly a community where we come as we are, no pretense. God’s love surpasses all understanding! “O magnify the Lord with me and let us exalt His name together!” (Psalm 34:3)
Darryl & Debbie Wilson
Darryl & Debbie Wilson
Darryl and Debbie Wilson began serving with The Church at Southside in early 2018 and were quickly drawn in and engaged in the work and ministry God is doing with and through us. They are the most recent additions to our leadership team, but by Darryl’s contention, the “most senior and experienced” among us. During their 34 years of marriage, they have raised two adult sons, Christopher and Jonathan, and have served in churches and various leadership and teaching capacities from engaged and newly married couples to parents of teenagers and beyond. Drawn to giving back and desiring to pour out their respective spiritual gifts tangibly in this unique environment, Darryl and Debbie offer their years of experience to mentor both our membership and our leadership team in their various phases of life.

Sunday Serving Teams

In addition to our leadership team, many members of our small church body volunteer their time during Sunday gatherings each week to lend a hand. From serving food and drinks before our service to assembling bags of supplies for the week ahead to distributing additional food, toiletries, and clothing before we all go our separate ways, our teams that selflessly serve week after week are an invaluable part of our TCAS family.

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