Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
January was a great month in the life of the Inner City congregation! We rejoiced as we witnessed the public confession that Jesus is the Son of God by Demetrice Cunningham, a 23 year old young man I baptized into Christ for the remission of his sins! Demetrice is the fourth adult baptized from a family I have known for fifteen years. I first met his mother, Barbara Cunningham, in Orange Grove, when her kids rode the church bus to Tuesday night Bible school. Today, the entire family, including grandchildren, are a part of what makes up the Mobile Inner city Church of Christ. When our buses reached 28-30 years of age, and were not safe to drive anymore we traded them in, and along with a contribution from a couple of congregations we were able to purchase one 15 year old diesel engine school bus for $10,000.00. We would need at least another three buses to start back Bible school.
We kick started Super Saturday with 22 of our youth from the Inner City congregation attending! We appreciate the University church of Christ for allowing us to use their Christian student center! I’m not particularly gifted in the area of youth ministry, but with God’s help I pulled it off; we had a great time getting to know each other, and being challenged in our Bible knowledge. We concluded with a short devotional about the prodigal son. There are two things I noticed about our youth group that I want to share with you: (1) more than half of our youth group is between 12-14 years of age, and (2) the majority of our youth are connected; they attend church services with their families at Inner City. We have a whole new ball of clay to shape and mold! And, for those of you in-tune with ‘Inner City’, the status quo of minors attending without an adult has been flipped; I can say we have a ‘family friendly’ environment. Recently, while speaking at the Freed-Hardeman University Bible Lectureship, I closed my talk on inner city mission work and opened up for questions from those in attendance. One of the questions I was asked was how many youth do we have attending Sunday morning? I know from over the years that most of our brethren associate inner city works with children / youth ministry, and have often engaged groups made up entirely of minors when visiting on mission trips to the various ‘Inner City Ministries’ throughout the land. I made a point to say that what one should expect to see when visiting the Mobile Inner City congregation is a fairly equal proportion of adults and children; they will see families worshiping God together! That’s a sign of maturity we can all feel good about.
Speaking of maturity: My wife, Jane, is putting together a ‘Sweet Heart Banquet’ for the married couples of the Inner City congregation; we have seven couples who have confirmed their attendance the evening of Saturday, February 18! Couples living together outside the bonds of marriage is characteristic of the inner city culture, but thanks to the pure teaching of the Word and a renewing of minds, we are seeing results that bring glory and honor to God! We look forward to having Mike Eddlemon, an elder serving with the Creekwood congregation, as our guest speaker for that evening, and his sweet wife, Nelly will be there, as well. I know God is blessing this work!
Thank you for all your love, prayers, and support!
Chuck Griffis, Evangelist
Mobile Inner City Church of Christ