Growing Church Celebrates First Easter Together
By Ed Pierce // April 15, 2012
BREVARD COUNTY • WEST MELBOURNE, FLORIDA – Easter Sunday is a special day for the devout, but this year it also was the very first Easter service for a growing church in West Melbourne.
Midtown Church held its first Easter service at the Max K. Rodes Community Center on April 8.
Since the church was created with a couple of families in a living room last August, the church has taken hold and gained a loyal following under Lead Pastor Greg Harris.
“Our mission is simple, we want to bring the gospel to our community in a practical, life-changing way without compromising the truth found in the word of God,” said Harris. “We moved to the Rodes Park Community Center to give us more room to worship and to give our children a place where they can have fun and learn about God in their own room.”
Harris said that in February 2011, he and his wife Rebecca were called by God to begin a church in the Melbourne-Palm bay area.
“God eventually brought us into a relationship with another family who had a similar desire last August. We longed to begin a church that was rooted in the uncompromised teaching of the word of God,” he said. “But we needed to know that this was what God wanted from us. So we challenged each other to pray to God for one week, and to ask God to send us some families if he wanted us to move forward.
“He answered our prayer and sent us five or six families within a couple of weeks,” Harris said. “We then challenged each other to pray and ask God to send us a place to worship in. With $270 and a vision, he brought us to the new Rodes Park, where the Lord has faithfully taken care of our needs since then.”
He said the basic mission of the church is to develop disciples of Jesus Christ.
The church currently has 35 members and new people are showing up at services every week after moving to the Rodes Park Community Center in January.
“My prayer and hope is that we build a church that has a real impact in the community. Midtown’s slogan is ‘Living here with you,’” Harris said. “One of the unique things about Midtown is we have leaders who are actively a part of the community.
“The leaders of Midtown are working full-time in the community,” he said. “Therefore, being a part of the community, we want to bring a message of hope that will give people purpose and joy amidst the troubles of this world. We want to see Midtown develop into a church that is a beacon of hope for the community and hopefully to the world.”
Along with Harris, other church leaders include support pastors Wally Frederick and Mark Linger, worship director Gabby Goodall and children’s ministry coordinator Brittany Shelley.
Harris said being new in the community, Midtown Church is in a learning mode.
“For this first year, we are watching, listening, and learning the needs of the community. This will dictate how we engage the community,” he said. “We desire to make the most of our time and the Lord’s money, therefore, for the time being, we are developing events that will allow us to shake hands with others in the community and to hear stories that are behind the faces we meet. Most of our events will circle around Rodes Park and be things such as cookouts and movies in the park. As we are able, we will begin to offer assistance in many different ways to those in the community.
Church members are aware that as more members join, a more permanent home will have to be obtained.
But for the time being the Rodes Park Community Center is a good place to gather for worship, Harris said.
“Midtown is a small church with a big vision. We have seen God at work and we will continue to see God at work in and through us,” Harris said. “It’s not that Midtown is any better than another local church. I am very grateful that God has placed many gospel believing churches in the area that reach all types of people. What sets Midtown apart as unique is our story. We have begun literally from nothing. And in seven short months, the Lord has worked in incredible ways at Midtown. Anywhere the Lord is working, be it at Midtown or another church, is a church I want to be at.”
Midtown Church services are held at 10:30 p.m. every Sunday in the Max. K. Rodes Community Center, 3410 Flanagan Avenue, West Melbourne.
For information, call 321-613-8353 or visit www.midtownchurchfl.org.