Nearly two hundred central Indiana families recently passed through the fellowship hall of Main Street Church of God. They didn’t come to take Communion, hear someone preach to them, or sing Kumbaya. Because that’s not the essence of Main Street Church of God. Sure, people do attend Sunday services where singing, preaching, and periodically Communion take place, but the church located at 4211 Main Street on the south side of Anderson, Indiana, knows they exist to glorify God by serving those around them. In a culture where the caricature of a Christian asking for money is only a remote-click away, Anderson residents were presented with a different picture. When neighbors went to church on Saturday, October 15, 2016, they were the recipients of shirts, socks, and shoes for seniors, infants, and every age in between.
Try this on for size: most of the word about the event got out via Facebook. After invitations went out to a small number of people, the news that Main Street Church of God would be offering free clothes to the community spread like wildfire. Friends shared the information with their friends, who shared with other friends, who shared with other friends. Such buzz about Main Street Church of God had never before surfaced in the community. How would the modest-size congregation handle it all?
That’s one question Jennifer Crum, associate pastor of children and family ministries, pondered as the day grew closer. She’d began as a self-described cheerleader for the event that had been announced one Sunday morning while the senior pastor was preaching. Her enthusiasm for the clothing giveaway naturally led her to the place of accepting a leading role in the planning of the event. “I wasn’t really sure what to expect the turnout to be like, but had increasing expectation that this was something big,” she recalls. “As we began to sort clothes, I was very concerned that we would not have enough for everyone. I began to pray that God would bless us like He did the widow that served Elijah. She never ran out of flour and oil to make bread; there was always enough.”
What a turnout there was! While some late-arrivals weren’t able to find everything they wanted, most at least picked up one article of clothing. While people waited in line to “feast” on the smorgasbord of gently used clothing that the church and friends of the church had donated, they were treated to an added blessing. An opportunity was given to the very patient families and individuals to request prayer for a variety of needs—from serious health circumstances to major financial dilemmas. Over the next week, the congregation prayed for these needs, asking God to bless and encourage all who had come through those doors—many of whom may otherwise have never before set foot on church property.
Even at the peak of activity, God provided more donations of clothes to continue to meet the felt needs of the community. It was clear this event responded to a real need, which may be why the church is already planning on doing it again. Responding to need—that’s what Jesus did when He walked the earth more than two thousand years ago. On Saturday, October 15, He responded to need again—this time through a dozen or so of His followers at a small-but-growing church on the south side of Anderson.
Come see for yourself what Main Street Church of God is all about. Our worship celebration services on Sunday begin at 10:30 AM at 4211 Main Street, Anderson IN 46013. Contact us at 765-644-6555 or firstname.lastname@example.org.