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Grace Baptist Church of Indy Neighborhood House

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Our Approach to Urban Ministry
Grace Baptist Church of Indy Neighborhood House
Home of J.D. Willett
A Ministry of Grace Baptist Church of Indy, Pastor Walt Willett , Phone (317) 696-8480
1. God has burdened the members of Grace Baptist Church of Indy not to go to church but bring the church to our community (John 3:16). Through the church, the members are bringing God’s love to our community.
2. God has burdened us to practice incarnational urban ministry. This means we live among the people to whom we are ministering just as Jesus did (Phil. 2:5-11). It may require some sacrifice, but we want to follow in His steps who left all of the privileges and the glories of Heaven to save His creation from an eternal Hell.
3. God has help us understand that prayer is essential to effective urban ministry (I Tim. 2:1-4). It is Godwho must remove the Satanic blindness  from our neighbors (II Cor. 4:3-4), show our neighbors their sin, show them who Christ is and that they no longer have to serve sin and the devil (John 16:8-11). His Word teaches our prayer is an essential part of the Holy Spirit’s convicting ministry (Matt. 16:18-19). Just recently at night, God has burdened our church to walk the streets with our neighbors praying for God to protect and save our neighborhood. Because some of our neighbors were not comfortable with spontaneous prayer, God burdened us to write some prayers they could read.
4. God has burdened members of to develop relationships with anyone who will let us (I Thess. 4:9). As our neighbors ask questions (I Pet. 3:15) or God’s Spirit burdens the members of the church, we talk about Him and share literature. As God show our church members needs, we try to respond with loving deeds such as letting neighbors use our phone or provide a ride to the doctor or any place else they need to go.  The relationships with our neighbors usually start with greeting each other on the street and then God gives us a reason for going to their door. Eventually they invite us in to their house. Over time, our neighbors often invite members of our church to share a meal with them.
5. God showed us that in our neighborhood the children were the most open (Matt. 18:2). So our church started a Good News Club for them with Child Evangelism Fellowship. At first, we had to walk them to a nursing home nearby who let the church use a room for our children’s ministry, then in March God provided this house and a bus. Now we also have a Friday night youth ministry.
6. Like Paul at Ephesus, God burdened us to minister publicly and then from house to house. (Acts 20:17-21).
7. Because most of our neighbors have gone to church in their childhood and later lost interest or were turned off or hurt by the church, God burdened us to keep our ministry personal and home centered not institutional or church building centered (Rom:3-5).  It is easier to get them to come to a house in their neighborhood than to go to a formal church building. We dress very casual because many in our community do not have “traditional church clothes”. As God enables, eventually, we will use a church building for our larger Sunday evening services.
8. God burdened us to start a local church not a para church ministry because we believe the local church is God’s tool for making himself known in this age of Grace (Acts 14:21). We praise God for the many fine para church ministries in our city, but we believe there are some real advantages to being a local church even though in some ways we are a mission and need the support of others. Some of the advantages are that: 1) our neighbors expect a church to share the Gospel. 2) We do not have to move them from accepting Christ to finding a local church. They are in one. 3) The word instructs us to teach, exhort and exercise accountability and discipline in a way that a para church cannot.
9. God has burdened us to not do for our neighbors but address needs and minister with our neighbors (Matt. 10:1, 5-7). We believe that always doing for creates a dependency where doing with empowers.
10. Because God’s love is being shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Spirit, we care for the whole person (Rom. 5:4). As we have listened to our neighbors, and our city leaders, we have developed 17 issues that with the help of our neighbors will address local concerns.
Grace Baptist Neighbor House and Grace Baptist Church
Community Development Activities   Pastor: Walt Willett
Projects: Working with our neighbors, we hope to accomplish the following:
Family Enrichment:
 1. Move the IPS bus stop away from the convicted child molester.
 2. Appeal to IPS to move the children’s school closer to their families.
 3. Develop a reading program for pre school children on Saturday morning.
 4. Start a summer school enrichment program for grade school students.
 5. Encourage our children to be a part of the Public Library and Pizza hut reading effort
      by making weekly library runs to our neighborhood library.
 6. Send 4 children to Good News Camp this summer.
 7. This summer provide moms the opportunity to take their kids camping at a state parks
      for 3 days.
 8. This summer explore work projects for the young teens of our neighborhood.
 9. Continue to develop the parents night out program on Saturday night from 6:00 – 9:00.
Health Enrichment:
10. Promote monthly blood pressure checks and regular sugar checks at our neighborhood
      house one Wednesday a month or weigh in and blood pressure checks and sugar checks
      at the Meridian Street nursing home.
Build Community:
11. This summer attack crime in our neighborhood by developing better community
      through the following:
      April 7 Children’s Easter Event                August 7 Police Man’s Night Out & Le Grande Ave     
      June Neighborhood Yard Sale And Health Fair      Street Party   
      July 4th Fireworks Celebration                                Oct. 28 Fall Harvest Festival
      Dec. 23 Neighborhood Christmas Caroling
      Encouraging neighbors to donate to encourage these projects.
      Thursday craft night for the ladies.
12. Form a neighborhood association for our area. Inventory and uses our community assets.  
      Form` a referral food pantry for neighbors in need. Those in need must be referred by
      neighbors who know their situation. Form a clothing ministry and share furniture etc with
      those in need.   Develop transportation plans for those without cars and process other needs.
Reduce Crime:
13. Form active crime watches for each street. Explore with the police a neighborhood Dad’s patrol.
14. Work closely with the police to stop the approximately 7 drug dealers in our
Encourage Political Involvement:
14. Bring in city council members from both parties to encourage our neighbors to vote.
Improve Our Local Community Involvement:
15. Lobby the city to improve our curbs and sidewalks.
16. Encourage the city to follow code and keep the lawn mowed at the house vacant house
      in our neighborhood.
Solicit Help:
17. Work with the Faith Based Office to locate an America core worker to live in our house
     and work in our neighborhood.


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