We were a small group of individuals who had been worshipping together with Jim Huffman since first accepting his offer to serve as our pastor back in February of 1987.
In September of 1988 we were looking for an opportunity to worship and fellowship in a structure and environment which lent dignity and respect to anyone feeling led to spiritual service regardless of sex, color of skin, or marital status. There were forty-two of us who gathered together in worship and fellowship that Sunday in the fall of 1988 for our first official service as "Christ's Church." We were from a variety of religious backgrounds.
We rented meeting rooms in what was called at that time "Park Inn," a Clarion Hotel property located near the University of Arkansas. While Christís Church has always had a contingency of representation from the U of A (students and staff), our church family is a cross section of our community racially, economically and sociologically.
We were in agreement that it shouldnít be harder to "belong" to a church than it is to "get to heaven." Our statement of faith was developed using basic historic Christian principles as the core of our theology. We were not interested in developing dogmas but rather general Biblical principles upon which we could build our faith, our lives and our church body.
We adopted our constitution and by-laws with a philosophy which called for consensus building and unanimity rather than a majority vote. We are willing to "table" issues prayerfully rather than engage in divisive dialogue. Unity in love is the principle objective in our fellowship together.
Because of our commitment to this relational polity, we are congregational in structure. We have Elders and a Pastor (who is also one of the Elders). We have a congregational meeting anytime any decisions need to be made, beyond the normal everyday operating processes.
We met for the first services in our own facility. After about fourteen months of renting meeting rooms at "Park Inn," we were able to purchase the old Masonic Lodge building at 525 West 15th Street in south Fayetteville.
We were so excited. It took a couple of months of hard work by virtually everyone in the congregation to prepare the facility and property to be adequate for our needs. By January of 1990, we were able to have our dedication service.
We had decided to only purchase equipment as we had cash to do so. Some of our furnishings were sparse. Over the months, we were able to equip it quite nicely on a cash basis. The building was financed for a ten year period of time (We paid it off in full less than six years later).
We have remodeled in the past few years with new tile, new carpet, new seating in the sanctuary, and a new steeple (our first steeple had been destroyed in a storm). We have also added a bright copper-colored standing seam steel roof. We have landscaped with a tree-lined parking lot and multiple flower gardens. This has all been done on a cash basis without any fundraising nor "taking up an offering".
As we enjoying the blessings of God in every area of our lives we continue to supply the needs of the corporate body with the money we drop in the offering box at the back of the sanctuary. (For a photo tour of the church building, click on this link.)
More than a building
Our history is more than where we meet and when we bought property. Our little congregation has as its primary history its investment in the people who have come through its doors and fellowship.
We have a history of adopting the University students who have come into our fellowship during their years of study. We have helped, listened, fed, nurtured, loved, laughed and cried with each of them. We have celebrated their graduations, marriages, and babies and sorrowed with them through the deaths, divorces and struggles of their families. We now have UA Alums (church alums) all over the United States and enjoy so very much hearing from them!
We have a history of caring through helping, investing our benevolences in our own church families and also through monthly support of the Salvation Army, the Seven Hills Shelter and other community charitable organizations.
We have a history of assisting our church members in the community projects in which they are involved through their careers and businesses, i.e. "Cynthia Vick Memorial Scholarships," "Renee Bell Memorial Scholarships," "Single Parent Scholarships," "Habitat for Humanity," "Rotary International Childrenís Projects," "Toys for Tots," "Angel Tree," "Ozark Literacy Council," "St. Francis House," "Ozark Guidance's Habberton House," "Peace at Home" (a shelter for abused women), and many, many more.
We have a history of being people who pray. We believe that prayer, in and of itself, may not change things but it puts you in contact with the One who can change things. It is not a symbolic gesture when someone from Christís Church says, "We will pray for you." We do pray for needs and situations at the beginning of each and every Bible Study or class. We firmly believe that in sharing and bearing one anotherís burdens we "fulfill the Law of Christ."
We donít know about the future, ours or yours, but we know Who holds the future. And, we know we can "commit our way unto Him and He will bring it to pass."
P.O. Box 996
Fayetteville, Arkansas 72702
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We Are Family!!!
Our motto is...You come once - you are a visitor, but you come a second time - you belong.