CUB Frequently Asked Questions
How did CUB Austin get started?
Church Under the Bridge (CUB) Austin was started in late 1992 when Tim Pinson Sr. and a group of college students set out to live on the streets of Austin for two days. During that time they interacted with many people who were living on the street and began to ask them if they would attend a church service if one were to be held outside where they could attend. Many responded and said they would attend such a service. On the evening of the second night the group decided they would hold a small service in a park the next morning and they prepared about 25 sandwiches for lunch. To their surprise over 40 people on the street came to the service, CUB Austin was born. Recognizing that people living on the street had a need for fellowship and community with the Body of Christ, the Church Under the Bridge was established as a regular ministry of Mission: Possible! Austin.
Initially, services were held on the forth Sunday of every month at Festival Beach under IH-35 at Town Lake. Over the first couple years, attendance to the service grew, as did volunteer participation. In 1995 some folks from a local congregation, Church of the Hills, expressed that they would like to volunteer on a regular basis. This allowed for two Sunday services per month and three years later services would be held on every Sunday of the month. In 1998, we had our first set of "lead churches" participating in CUB. The first Sunday of the month was led by "Luke 4:18 ministries", the second by Grace Covenant Church, the third by Round Rock Chapel, and the fourth Sunday by Church of the Hills.
In 2001, the City of Austin informed us that the local neighborhood association had filed several complaints about CUB and the people meeting there. That same year, the city asked us to leave Festival Beach and they offered Palm Park as a meeting place. We were only able to enjoy a one-year tenure at Palm Park when the same issue came up with the neighborhood association there. So, we sat down with the City of Austin and asked them what options we had. After some deliberation, it was decided that we would request permission from TX-dot to meet under the bridge at IH-35 and 7th Street. Permission was granted and we have been meeting there since.
What is Church Under the Bridge all about?
The vision of Church Under the Bridge (CUB) goes hand in hand with Mission: Possible! Austin’ s mission statement, "To glorify God by connecting the body of Christ with Austin’s urban communities to foster Christ-life transformation through life-on-life relationships." As a “gateway” ministry, CUB is a place where people on the street can come and have spiritual needs and some physical needs met through relationships. It is also a place for the Body of Christ in Austin to connect to those who are in need. With that connection established, relationships can be formed and people can be empowered to walk with God in the purpose He has for them.
Who is the pastor of Church Under the Bridge?
Church Under the Bridge does not have a “pastor” as it relates to the traditional understanding of a “senior pastor” or single person who leads the ministry. There are no paid staff. However, there are those who function as shepherds to the people who attend the weekly service. There are also those who teach (preach) on a regular basis and those who minister to the specific needs of people through prayer and other means. Because CUB is a ministry of Mission: Possible! Austin, these individuals function under the vision and direction of the Mission: Possible! Board of directors and its staff.
How many people attend on a Sunday morning?
This number changes seasonally but there are between 250 – 300 people who come regularly to the Sunday services. During the warm weather there may be as many as 350-400 and as many as 650 for the special events.
Who are the lead churches?
Currently the following churches lead:
- First Sunday – Austin Stone Community Church
- Second Sunday – Grace Covenant Church
- Third Sunday – Independent group of volunteers
- Fourth Sunday – Church of the Hills
- Fifth Sunday (Quarterly) – Hyde Park Baptist Church