Centenary Christian Lives out the Dream in Indianapolis

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Centenary Christian Church of Indianapolis created and co-sponsored a community rally and forum, Living out the Dream in Brookside, at Brookside Community Church on Dr. Martin Luther King Day. The church was motivated in part by a recent spike in the number of crimes against women and girls in the Brookside Neighborhood on the near east side of Indianapolis, where the church is located. The church and community also have continuing concerns about the growing rate of crime and illegal drug sales, in a neighborhood that was once a proud and stable community.

Edward Wheeler, President of Christian Theological Seminary, delivers the message during "Living out the Dream in Brookside".

In November of last year Gregory E. Bryant, Senior Minister of Centenary Christian Church, received a call from a concerned member about a friend’s daughter who was nearly abducted less than a mile from the church. He soon learned that there had been at least four similar incidents in the community within a month’s time.

Bryant telephoned the Senior Minister of the Brookside church, Aaron Shelby. The two ministers began prayerfully planning a response from the area churches, schools, community organizations, businesses and the police department. After several meetings with various civic and community leaders, the two congregations began to plan an event which would allow the community’s neighbors to voice concerns and dreams for the future of the neighborhood.

Approximately 100 people from the community gathered for “Living out the Dream in Brookside.” Edward Wheeler, President of the Christian Theological Seminary, was the main speaker. Wheeler shared a message titled, “A Letter to Dr. King,” an imaginary letter that Wheeler had written to King, updating the civil rights icon about the latest happenings in our nation, the city, and in the Brookside community.

Marilyn Holtz, a long-time member of Centenary Christian Church, shared about her experience of serving in a Freedom House with Dr. King in Mississippi. Mrs. Loesje Chandler, Centenary’s Minister of Music, directed a combined choir. An additional 30-40 youth and children were involved in youth activities in other parts of the building.

Following the celebration, participants had the opportunity to meet in smaller groups in the church’s gymnasium. Residents were asked to reflect upon certain points in King’s, “I Have a Dream” speech and to share their own concerns and dreams for the community. At each table, a recorder kept a record of the responses.

Sue Switzer, Moderator of Centenary Christian, and Kate Terlep, Centenary’s Student Associate Minister, were both instrumental in making this event happen.

Centenary Christian Celebrates 100th Anniversary

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Greg Bryant, pastor of Centenary Christian Church, leads worship at the original site as part of the church's 100th anniversary celebration.

Centenary Christian Church in Indianapolis celebrated 100 years of service in worship on Sunday, October 11.  The church is located on the near east side of Indianapolis at 1035 N. Oxford.

The morning began with a gather at the original site of the church, above a storefront at the corner of 10th and Rural.  Following a time of scripture, prayer and singing, the group walked a block and a half back to the congregation’s current meeting location.

The celebration included the presentation of a quilt made by the women of the church entitled, “Helping Hands: Past, Present and Future.”  The quilt was made possible by a gift in memory of Margaret Wright.

Presentations included as part of the worship service included music from the chancel choir and bell choir and snapshots of church history.  Manna, a quartet from earlier days at the church, reunited for the celebration and also presented special music.

The morning message, “1910,” was given by a former pastor of Centenary, Richard Powell.  Other former ministers in attendance included Paula Peterson, Jeff Gill, Lind Trowbridge, Brooks Barrick and Richard Moore.

Over 200 members, former members and friends shared in the celebration.

Centenary Food Pantry in Need of Food Donations

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Recently the food pantry at Centenary Christian Church, located on the near east side of Indianapolis, has served an extraordinarily large number of families in great need.  On Monday, June 22, the food pantry served more than 50 families in two hours, and many of those families had more than eight people in the household. 

This unusually high demand has left the shelves empty.  The food pantry at Centenary currently has a great need for corn, peas, fruit cocktail, cereal, apple sauce, spaghetti sauce with spaghetti, any juices, canned meats except tuna, diapers size 4 & 5, toilet paper and bath soap. 

The pantry will be open and able to receive donations on Saturday, June 27, from 10:00 a.m. until 3:00 p.m. and again on Monday, June 29, with the same hours.  Any donations during this time would help and be greatly appreciated. 

Centenary Christian is located at 1035 N. Oxford St., Indianapolis.  The telephone number is (317) 639-1481.  Rev. Greg Bryant serves as pastor.