Beavercreek, OH - Free music, smoke, and multicolored lights filled the sanctuary Saturday, July 23rd at The Vineyard’s Beavercreek campus. All of this was the product of a visit by popular Christian artists KJ-52 and Kari Jobe, who stopped in to perform a free concert for the people of the Dayton area. It was put together by a local man named Joey Brown, in conjunction with his church, Mechanicsburg Christian Fellowship, and the staff at The Vineyard.
Popular Christian Rap Artist KJ-52 performing at The Vineyard's Beavercreek campus.
NEW CARLISLE, Ohio (WDTN) - People across the Miami Valley without have turned to area shelters. The Vinyard Church in Beavercreek has opened its doors and is providing food, coffee and a warm place to stay. New Carlisle Elementary school has also opened its doors. More than a dozen people filled the school.
BEAVERCREEK- The Vineyard Church’s expansion into a new building will double the seating capacity when it’s completed later this year.
“We’re hoping to be in the new building by Easter this year, but I’m being very careful to say sometime between Easter and Christmas,” said senior Pastor Doug Roe, adding there is no target date, but realistically it will be finished around June 1. Groundbreaking was a year ago in May.
The Vineyard began holding services at it’s Indian Ripple Road location in 2002 in an old lumber warehouse.
Roe says the church wants to keep the building the sae style as the old one, so if the church ever decides to move, it could be transitioned into a business.
It is two stories high and contains an auditorium, elevator, several classrooms, a book store, coffee bar and even a lounge with a fireplace.
The expansion is adjacent to the old building, but it is not connected. Jim Alt of ALT Architecture Inc. is the architecture and construction manager. The church has about 3,000 members and is growing, according to Roe. The building will seat 1,600 people.
The expansion is 40,000 square feet, compared to the old building’s 48,000 square feet, Roe said.
The expansion has been funded by contributions from church members, Roe said. Many people pledged gifts during the three-year period. For example, someone pledged $180,000 for three years and is giving $5,000 a month, Roe said. The church started the capital fundraising campaign last year.
The original construction price tag was about $4 million, but Roe said it is now $2.5 million because steel prices are coming down. The remaining $500,000 will come from contributions.
The old building will be renovated and used for youth services, staff offices and a voting precinct during the election season. It will also house a food pantry.
Roe said the Vineyard is not a typical church. The church takes no offering at services and plays modern usic. He said the congregation is always thinking of activities.
The building is the first of more to come, the next expansion will likely be for a teen center.
“We would like to give the youth a place to go to play sports or games, things like that,” Roe said.
For more information about the Vineyard Church, visit it’s Web site at www.daytonvineyard.com.
Vineyard Church broke ground last week for an auditorium to serve its rapidly growing membership.
Construction on the new auditorium is in the first step in a plan for three buildings at the old lumber company property on Indian Ripple Road that the church took over in 2002.
“We’ve doubled in size, and then some, since then,” said Doug Roe, senior pastor of the church. “We also bought the 15 acres next to us to expand.”
Roe said the Beavercreek facility will be designed as a campus atmosphere that will include a coffee bar, youth center and daycare facility. The church has about 3,000 members.
The Vineyard is an offshoot of the church of the same name started in the Cincinnati area that is now one of the largest nondenominational institutions in the region. Both churches have ties to The Vineyard Church in California.
Roe said his organization is marketed to what he calls the “unchurched,” or people who do not regularly attend services. “We are trying to make it an attractive place to be on Sunday morning,” he said of the new facility.
Beside expanding its Beavercreek location, Roe said, Vineyard members are increasing efforts to help the needy, with plans for a food pantry for residents laid off from their jobs.
“Our real concern is for people who don’t go to church and the poor and broken who need our help,” Roe said.
Just a month shy of the third anniversary of Hurricane Katrina, a group of Vineyard Church volunteers arrived in New Orleans to help put things right.
Jackswon Twp. resident Rick Cornett was among the group of 25 on their two-week mission that put finishing touches on the rebuilt Beulah Land Baptist Church.
That church was situated just south of Lake Pontchartrain and near the Intracostal Waterway, an area flooded when levees broke. In fact, only the church’s steeple stood above the water.
When Katrina exited and the water receded, the church was found too badly damaged to repair.
The Miami Valley group’s task was to insulate, drywall, paint and tile during the ongoing construction. Cornett said the Rv. Michael Zacharie was brought to tears by the outpouring of support for his church.
“The pastor just broke down a few times,” Cornett said. “He was just amazed that people would come down there and help.”
The week of July 26 found Cornett and the others usually getting up at 6 a.m. and putting in a 12 or 13 hour day. It was hot, too - 95 to 100 degrees every day with humidity not far behind. Another group followed up a week later.
Cornett and Janet Collinsworth ended up with higher places.
“We did all the insulation in the ceiling. We just jumped on the lift and took over,” Cornett said.
“It’s a pretty good-sized church. I wasn’t expecting it to be that big,” he said.
And while Cornett will be the first to admit he hasn’t had much experience with sheetrock, he was forced to learn fast.
“I can do it better now,” he laughed.
The mission was developed by Mike Frey, Senior Pastor Doug Roe, Gregg Heminger and others in November.
Frey’s son is a member of Campus Crusade for Christ, and the pair developed a relationship with those in New Orleans.
“God got the people he needed to go,” Cornett said.
But the trip wasn’t all work. The cajun food the group enjoyed was a highpoint.
“Pat Caudill is our cook. He really took care of us,” Cornett said.
Caudill, Gregg Heminger said, owns Patricks BBQ in Beavercreek.
“He took time off from his own business to go down and do this,” Heminger said.
“Even the folks down there made us stuff and brought it over to us,” Cornett added.
Gumbo and black beans and rice were said to be favorites.
One evening, the group took a few hours off to enjoy the sights of New Orleans, such as the Riverwalk Marketplace and the French Quarter.
“We all knew what we were getting into,” Cornett said. “We knew it was going to be hot and dirty and work. Nobody cared. We just drank a lot of water.”
Cornett, 54, a 1971 graduate of Valley View high School, recently retired from the General Motors Moraine truck plant. Since his return from New Orleans, he’s taking a much-needed break after 35 years on the job.
“I’m taking it easy for a few months,” he said. “I’ll do a little more work at church and see where the Lord leads me.”
Cross Point Affiliates with Vineyard The Centerville-Belbrook Times
October 17, 2007 click here to view the actual article “Cross Point Vineyard, formerly Cross Point Church and First Baptist of Centerville, has affiliated with the Vineyard Fellowship of Churches. Cross Point has historical significance to Centerville in that there has been an ongoing congregation since 1799. Some of the founding fathers of Centerville, including Dr. John Hole and the Nutt Family, were also early members of what was then called Sugar Creek Baptist Church. Pictured is a group shot of Cross Point Vineyard members with some of the Dayton Vineyard Members at a "Vineyard Affiliation Celebration Service" on September 23. For information, visit www.Crosspointvineyard.com, Vineyardusa.org, and/or Daytonvineyard.com.
A grad's day of tassel, tears Dale Huffman
Dayton Daily News
February 23, 2006
Les Vesey watched proudly Wednesday, his eyes a bit misty, remembering the baby girl he held in the crook of his arm.
For 17 years, Vesey, 49, has dreamed of attending her high school graduation ceremony as he did a year ago for his son, Patrick, 19.
Sarah Rene Vesey, his loving daughter, is scheduled to graduate June 3 at the Nutter Center with her Beavercreek High classmates in the class of 2006.
But cruel fate, of this kind we find hard to comprehend, has intervened in the Vesey family's life.
According to Vesey's wife, Kim, 45, who has been a hospice nurse for 21 years, her husband is fighting cancer that is spreading rapidly.
“We knew Les wanted to see this (graduation) happen so bad,” Kim said. “We talked about it and a group of kind people went to work to help us make a very special thing happen.”
Sarah's white graduation cap and gown arrived Friday. School officials already had Sarah's diploma in hand, and knew she had all the academic credits she needed.
So nurses and an ambulance transported Les to Vineyard Christian Church, less than a mile from the Vesey home in Beavercreek. The sounds of Pomp and Circumstance played on a CD player, as about 53 family members and friends choked back emotion.
Sarah smiled as Superintendent Dennis Morrison and high school Princiapal Marian West presented her with her diploma as her father looked on.
“I would be proud to call you my daughter,” Morrison said. “You are an exceptional young woman.”
Sarah smiled again. Tears flowed. She held tightly to the leather-bound diploma and walked straight to her father. She leaned toward him, and after a long time she raised up and showed him her diploma.
The father's eyes reflected unconditional love and pride. “I whispered in his ear that we made it,” Sarah said, later.
“It was in God's hands,” Kim Vesey said. “Everything is.”
Fairborn – The Ervin J. Nutter Center stage is probably more accustomed to scorching riffs on electric guitar played just a few decibels below bursting eardrum level and in front of paying audience. But on Easter Sunday, the pounding, amplified beats weren’t part of a rock concert; they were the opening of a church service.
“We’re traditional at heart,” said Pastor Doug Roe of the Vineyard Church in Beavercreek. “But we’re rock and roll at heart also.”
About 3,500 people attended Easter services at the Nutter Center on Sunday. Most of those in attendance regularly go to the Vineyard’s building on Indian Ripple Road, but assistant Pastor Scott Sliver said the rapidly growing congregation decided to use the Nutter Center for Easter services and invite the public.
“Every week at the church we’re maxed out, about 2,500 people come,” Sliver said. “With the extra people we expected for Easter, we knew we couldn’t hold it at the church. We barely made it last year.”
Holding center stage for most of the service was the Christian rock band headed by church member Matt Haupt. The band includes two lead electric guitars, a saxophone, an electric bass guitar and two percussionists. Sunday they were backed by a 30-member choir. Candus and Angie Tipton of Beavercreek said they have been going to the Vineyard for about five years, and they said the church’s contemporary musical style fits with its informal, down-to-Earth approach to faith. Their favorite part of the Easter service was the videotaped testimony of another church couple about how a relationship with Jesus has improved their lives.
“Everything they do has a Biblical basis, but they relate it to everyday life,” Angie Tipton said. “They understand what real people go through, and they try to help us.”
Pastor Roe’s Easter message was that living “the good life” is not enough.
“You go to work; you come home, day after day, and after a while you start wondering where the meaning is,” he said. “That’s the eternal question: ‘What does it all mean?’
“Bigger and better toys and stuff isn’t enough to live for. But with a relationship with Christ we have everything to live for including a future in heaven.”
The door’s open, to anyone. No questions asked, no commitments required, no forms to complete or lectures to sit through.
The Life Enrichment Center, tucked behind industrial buildings off Springfield Street in east Dayton, asks nothing of the people who walk through its doors, who take part in their thrice-weekly hot breakfasts and weekly grocery distributions. The Life Enrichment Center asks nothing, but offers almost everything from free food to computer training to G.E.D. courses to anger-management classes.
“We try to be grace-driven,” said Jeff Sorrell, 47, the brains and muscle behind the 4-year-old community center. “We don’t judge anybody and everybody’s welcome.”
Sorrell started the LEC after visiting the Dream Center, a huge community-action organization in inner-city Los Angeles. He was inspired to bring the idea home to Dayton, where he found support from the pastor at his church, Dayton’s The Vineyard.
“At that time, we were giving out groceries out of the back of our building,” Sorrell recalled. “I believed that the people in Dayton needed more in so many areas – literacy, domestic violence, you name it.”
Sorrell, a self-proclaimed networker, went to work, securing the building at 515 Irwin St., quit his job in food distribution with SUPERVALU and became a full time Vineyard employee in charge of the vision that coalesced into the Life Enrichment Center.
“We started out just giving groceries,” he said, soon adding a cafeteria that provided free hot meals. Soon, Sorrell found ways to offer training, support and help where he saw a need.
“We take a holistic approach,” he said. “We’ve got classes on budgeting, parenting, stretching for seniors, exercise, English as a second language, even arts and crafts.”
As a Christian faith-based organization, the LEC offers Bible classes as well. Like all the LEC offering, it’s strictly voluntary.
“Hitting people over the head with the Bible never served anybody,” Sorrell smiled. “We lead people by how we act, by how we walk in front of them.”
The Vineyard is a major supporter, he said, but the LEC is it’s own separate entity, kept vibrantly alive by a force of volunteers, about 60 of whom show up for work every day. Support is found in other area churches, most notably the Far Hills Community Church in Centerville, and all the food served and groceries distributed are donated by area businesses. The LEC runs on a shoestring $130,000 budget: Sorrell’s persuasive networking skills serve him well as he scours the community for help.
“Somebody always knows somebody who does plumbing, or lays carpet,” he laughed. “There’s a lot of ‘Who do you know?’”
On Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, a free hot breakfast is served from 9 to 9:45a.m.; usually more than 200 people come in for the meal – and the company.
“Some of these people are just lonely,” said Diane Lawson, a volunteer. “You should see it – when they line up in the morning, it’s like a club, with everybody talking and laughing.
Lawson was impressed with the LEC after her son took G.E.D. classes there.
“They stress (to the volunteers) that we should be caring, show concern,” she said. “It’s not like we wouldn’t anyway, but that’s the whole thing here. They take time with people.”
For Lynn Hart, that’s the key. Hart, a trained chef who’s worked for the Officer’s Club and L’Auberge, began volunteering at the LEC during a period of her life when she was searching for something different.
“Shortly after I first started volunteering, I saw out of the corner of my eye this man stuff a handful of greasy sausage into his pocket,” she said. “I thing God wanted me to see what real hunger looked like.”
She approached Surrell about taking over the kitchen duties, and became the LEC’s only other paid employee – her salary is paid by a private individual whose contribution is managed through the Dayton Foundation.
“When I started, we’d use 20 pounds of potatoes a week,” Hart said. “Now I use 60 pounds of potatoes a day.”
She’s dependant on the food donations, never knowing from one week to the next what the menus will be. It doesn’t matter, though, as Hart is ready to work her magic on whatever ingredients are on hand.
“I don’t know until Monday at 1p.m. what’s going to be available,” she said. “But good food matters. I want this to be a place where people come for a truly good meal, not a compromise.
“The first time I served quiche, I had to explain what it was,” she said. “If you stand in line for a $30 bag of groceries, you’re not going to be going to restaurants where quiche is served.”
The breakfast line is a true study in diversity: Men in suits and ties, young families with children, women in skirts and heels mingle with those who may have spent the night on the street, who may have drug or alcohol addictions, who are getting their first hot meal in a long, long time. There are those who work minimum-wage jobs where a full-time salary barely covers the rent, and those for whom a free, hot meal is the only respite in a day full of juggling child care, part-time work and school.
That’s the key: It doesn’t matter, and nobody asks any questions – but everybody’s willing to listen.
In the words of Millie Johnson, who started volunteering 3 years ago after the death of her husband, “If they don’t’ have a smile on their face when they come in, I give them one of mine.”
People say miracles happen. I’m a believer now, thanks to someone I had never met.
It happened at a Subway where I stopped to pick up a sandwich for lunch. The business was not crowded at that time.
Three were awaiting service. First was a girl of high school age and then a woman who appeared to be her mother. I was behind them.
The lady at the cash register assumed we might be together. She said to the mother, “Are you paying for three?”
The mother glanced my way, handed the money to the cashier and said, “Yes, this is for three.”
“You’ve got to be kidding,” I said. “You don’t even know me.”
“That’s all right,” the mother stated. “It’s good to do things for people you don’t’ know.”
“Do I look destitute?” I asked.
“No,” she replied.
The mother and her daughter took a seat at one of the tables in the Subway to have their lunch. I stopped briefly to thank them before leaving.
“That was kind of you to pay for my lunch, but here, take this,” I said, handing money for the sandwich.
“No,” the mother insisted. “It’s something I want to do.”
“May I ask your name?” I said, offering mine in return.
“I’m Cindy Biggs. We live in Beavercreek and we go to the Vineyard Church on Indian Ripple Road. Lately we’ve been talking in church about doing things for others,” the mother explained.
“Well, no stranger ever offered to buy my lunch before. I don’t know what to say, other than thank you.”
“Maybe you’ll pass it along and do something for someone else,” she said.
It is the time of year when tens of thousands of people hereabouts are doing things for others they don’t’ know. It’s done almost automatically through affiliation with churches, charities and various organizations.
This newspaper’s Valley Food Relief is one example among many that lends a hand to people unknown by the donors.
What’s shocking is being on the receiving end of generosity. It’s miraculous.
So how might I instigate an act of kindness and pass it along, as Biggs suggested. I cant’s imagine buying lunch for my hunting and fishing buddies, let alone someone I don’t know.
Heretofore, I have proclaimed to my friends that my most valued service to humanity has been to rise early, set forth with rod and gun and bless the waters, the woods and the fields for all.
So far, no one has been impressed.
The Vineyard Church, 4051 Indian Ripple Road, opened its new building Tuesday night at a ribbon cutting ceremony.
the church is in the former Furrow Lumber building and will be hosting a community open house in its new facility on December 12, 13 and 14 from 7p.m. to 9p.m.
“This is such a big transition for us, and at times it’s hard to believe it is happening,” said Senior Pastor Doug Roe. “As we approach our 10th anniversary, our congregation has grown from a handful of people to about 1,600 regular followers in attendance.”
“We are especially grateful to the people and officials of Beavercreek, who have welcomed us and have been extremely cooperative.”
The Vineyard has moved from its previous location on Woodman Drive.
Consisting of a worldwide movement of Vineyard Fellowships, Vineyard was founded in California in 1974. In the mid-1980’s, Dayton native Doug Roe moved to Cincinnati to help establish the Vineyard in that city.
In the early 1990’s, Doug and his wife were called back to plant a Vineyard in Dayton.
Roe came to the ministry after a career with NCR as a distribution manager. He and his wife, Marcie, have been married 28 years, and are both from the Beavercreek area.
Guests to the Vineyard immediately notice a feeling of openness, warmth and informality, according to Roe. He explains that the Vineyard places a high priority on flexibility, believing that such a climate is conductive to personal, relational, and spiritual growth.
Services are structured to allow for change, freshness and innovation, said Roe. Modern Christian music is an important part of each service. The congregation is diverse, with people attending from all over the Miami Valley.
Its mission states: “To demonstrate God’s unconditional love and create a safe environment where people can grow into mature followers of Jesus Christ.” The Vineyard’s outreach program within the community is extensive, ambitious and often extremely down-to-earth, said Roe. Consisting of 48,000 square feet, offices, classrooms and multi-purpose room, Roe stresses that the new location will be a convenient, permanent home for the Vineyard.
The first service in this facility will be on Sunday, December 16 at 10a.m.
For further information, please call 937-427-1912, or visit their website at www.daytonvineyard.org.
Vineyard Christian Fellowship moving to location on Indian Ripple Road May 29, 2001
The year 2001 will certainly be a landmark year for the Vineyard Christian Fellowship, located at 101 Woodman Drive, near Airway Drive, in the Aero Tech office building.
In addition to celebrating its 10th anniversary in the Dayton area, the Vineyard will be moving to a new location this fall. The new location, 4039 Indian Ripple Road, in the former Furrow Lumber building, has a special significance, it will be the Vineyard's first-ever wholly-owned facility, according to Vineyard officials.
“This is such a big transition for us, and at times it's hard to believe it is actually happening.” noted Senior Pastor Doug Roe.
He said in addition to the current Woodman Drive location, the Vineyard's home has also been situated in a small shopping plaza further north on Woodman Drive.
“And before that we were meeting in individuals' homes,” Roe said, “As we approach our 10th anniversary, our congregation has grown from a handful of people to about 1,600 regular followers in attendance.”
Consisting of a worldwide movement of Vineyard Fellowships, the Vineyard was founded in California in 1974. In the mid-1980's, Roe moved to Cincinnati to help establish the Vineyard in that city. In the early 1990s, he and his wife were called back to plant a Vineyard in Dayton.
Roe came to the ministry after a career with NCR as a distribution manager. He and his wife, Marcie, have been married 28 years, and are both from the Beavercreek area.
First-time visitors to the Vineyard immediately notice a feeling of openness, warmth, and informality. Roe explains that the Vineyard places a high priority on flexibility, believing that such a climate is conducive to personal, relational, and spiritual growth. Services are structured to allow for change, freshness and innovation. Modern Christian music is an important part of each service. The congregation is diverse, with people attending from all over the Miami Valley.
Its mission is simple and direct: “To demonstrate God's unconditional love and create a safe environment where people can grow into mature followers of Jesus Christ.” The Vineyard's outreach program within the community is extensive, ambitious, and often extremely down-to-earth. Practical examples include handing out free cans of soft drinks on a hot afternoon, regularly sponsoring free oil changes for single mothers, and giving out free postage stamps at the main post office during tax day.
The Vineyard's projected move-in date is October. The Beavercreek Board of Zoning has given its approval, most of the critical inspections have been completed, and neighbors of this location have been supportive.
Beavercreek City Council last night approved the planning commission’s recommendation presented by Vineyard Christian Fellowship Church.
The proposal was a request on the church’s behalf of conditional use approval to reuse property formerly occupied by Furrow Building Materials at 4051 Indian Ripple Road as a church within the existing 48,800 square foot building.
Doug Roe*, pastor of the church, initiated the presentation to council by providing a background and future goals of the church.
“I was raised in Beavercreek and wanted to develop a church that gave back to the community where I grew up,” said Roe.
“The church has very humble beginnings and we started to provide help for the inner city. We have helped anywhere from 600 to 800 families,” Roe added. “We are a casual, young, energetic church and our main goal is to give something back to the community.”
David H. Montgomery, agent for the church said, “Most of the neighbors by the area we spoke to gave us positive feedback.”
Mike Richley, architect of the church, explained and presented graphics to council concerning the design of the church.
“I had to keep in mind the small budget that we are dealing with during the design,” said Richley. “But we have an opportunity to put a church in a place with a need.
Currently, a two story 48,800 square foot aluminum building is located on the site, as well as a two story aluminum “overhead structure.”
Six light poles are located in the parking fields. The property is bounded on the east, west and south by significant earthen berms with mature vegetation.
Shrubs are provided along the northern perimeter of the parking field. A wooden fence surrounds the interior on the site on the north, east and south.
Conditions of the agreement include:
The existing “overhead structure” on the property will be completely removed from the site prior to issuance of a zoning permit for the development.
The parking stalls may be nine feet wide and there will be curbing of the entire perimeter of the lot and all landscaped islands.
Barrier-type concrete curbing will be installed along the entrance roads to the project and around the perimeter of parking areas and landscaped islands.
The existing wood fence on the property will be completely removed, excepting the portion at the southwest corner of the site as indicated on the approved plans.
The applicant will be responsible at its sole expense for removing, replacing, and bonding all landscaping as well as the reconstruction of the parking area which may be necessitated by future widening of Indian Ripple Road.
All lighting within the development will comply with the city’s lighting ordinance.
Prior to the issuance of any zoning permit for the development, the developer will submit to the city a development agreement and performance bond or letter of credit to insure the installation of landscaping as approved and to insure the maintenance and survival of existing landscaping.
All building mechanical equipment is to be screened from all directions with architectural features of each building.
*in original publication, Doug Roe was spelled Doug Rowe
Food for the Hungry Project benefits needy: Clothing and food given to 700 people. Katherine Ullmer
Dayton Daily News
September 29, 1997
Friends Heather Boggs, 8, and Melanie Adams, 6, of Dayton, rummaged through boxes of used clothing in front of a big green church bus on Courthouse Square Sunday afternoon. Both found oversized fancy dresses and shoes. They ducked into a portable toilet just off the square and changed into their newfound treasures.
Remona Whitfield, 57, of Dayton, who uses a wheelchair, filled a large bag with clothing. “I also got a bag of food to take home,” she said. “And we ate. The food was really good. I appreciate what the police are doing for the community and the homeless.”
About 700 needy people were furnished with food and clothing at the square Sunday at “Food for the Hungry,” a joint project of the Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office and the nondenominational Vineyard Church, 2023 Harshman Road. “It was by far the largest group since we began doing this in August 1996,” said Darrin Goudy, the Sheriff’s inmate worker coordinator. “We’ve been doing this once every two months for a year now.”
From 2 to 4 p.m., church volunteers, sheriff’s deputies and nine county jail inmates, sentenced for misdemeanors such as petty theft or DUI’s, grilled and served hamburgers, hot dogs, and chili, donated by local vendors.
Some of the guests had homes, but some didn’t, which is why the food, and used clothing, collected and donated by the church was so gratefully received.
A 23-year-old pregnant mother with three children, aged 7, 5 and 1, staying in emergency housing, said she found enough clothes “to help me through.”
A 57-year-old grandmother and her two grandchildren, who have been homeless for two weeks, has been going from place to place to eat. “I try to make a game of it,” she said. “We ride the trolley. It’s and adventure to them, more or less.”
She filled several bags with clothes. “The homeless help one another,” she said. “If they find a new place to eat, they tell you.”
William Kindred, 57, who lives under a tent of carpet near the railroad tracks on third Street, came with a friend. “I do street ministry,” he said. “I try to bring people back to the ministry.” He ate chili with several friends, all recovering alcoholics.
A group of adults loudly played dominoes at a nearby table and children ran after 18-year-old Jeremiah Fraley of Fairborn, a church volunteer, who fashioned colorful balloon dogs and swords for them.
“We just want to show God’s love in a practical way,” said Jeff Sorrell, a volunteer chaplain who heads the Vineyard’s jail ministry.
County jail inmates Jerry Jackson, 27, and Chad Petitt, 22, said they appreciate getting out in the fresh air. “Everybody needs a chance to help someone out,” Jackson said. “It’s a chance to open your eyes and see how lucky you are to be on the outside.”
Servant Evangelism Vineyard members practice faith by spreading a message of kindness By Meredith Moss
Dayton Daily News
June 17, 1995
It’s 3:30p.m. on a sultry Friday afternoon at the corner of Harshman Road and Valley Street.
Standing on the median with traffic wihizzing by, Caleb Roe and some teenage friends wait for a red light, then spring into action.
“Would you like a free pop?” they ask motorists, holding up a can.
The next morning, outside the Englewood Kroger store, there are free hot dogs and brats, free drinks and free helium balloons for the kids.
At the adjoining Fifth Third Bank, there are free car washes as well.
“No Donations Accepted,” exclaim the signs. “No Strings Attached.”
It’s called “servant evangelism” and it’s become a way of life for many associates with the Vineyard Christian Fellowships, an offshoot of the California Jesus movement of the 1970’s.
While many traditional churches and synagogues wind down during summer months, Vineyard members switch into high gear, doing acts of kindness on a regular basis wherever and whenever they can.
“We’re more active in the summer,” explains pastor David Allen of the Vineyard on Rockridge Road in Englewood. “People have a chance to get outdoors more.”
“When people ask why we’re doing this, we tell them we want to show God’s love in a practical way,” says Allen, who shares pastoral responsibilities with his wife, Josette.
Judging from the reaction of those munching the hot dogs or drinking the colas, it’s a startling thing to hear.
“You don’t see these things often enough,” said Michael Dudley, eating a brat and marveling at the giveaway scene.
“You might see one individual doing something for another individual, but all these people? You can’t believe somebody is doing something nice for someone with no strings attached.”
The originator of the give-something-without-asking-for-anything concept was Steve Sjogren, the 39-year-old senior pastor of Cincinnati’s Vineyard Community Church.
Sjogren moved to Cincinnati in 1985 to start a Vineyard. For the first 18 months, he tried more traditional evangelism techniques, but only 37 individuals attended his services.
“I began to look back at the Gospels and see what Jesus did,” says Sjogren. “He served everywhere he went. Then the thought came to me… take those 37 people and mobilize them to go out into the community to serve.” His church began growing, he says, because the “culture of generosity” became so attractive.
Now his fellowship boasts a membership of 3,000 and he estimates half of the 500 Vineyards around the world are practicing “servant evangelism.”
Brenda Todd, staff member of the Vineyard on Harshman Road,
Has seen people weep when she has done something for them.
Her fellowship gives out free stamps at post offices, distributes light bulbs, smoke alarms and batteries. In the summer, members throw neighborhood parties in low-income communities, providing free picnics, clowns, pony rides. Some question whether middle income folks need that free Coke, Vineyard members, who also distribute clothing and food to the needy, say you don’t have to be poor to have a soul that craves kindness. “You’re touching people in a very practical way,” says Julie Kinne, daughter of Englewood pastor David Allen.
Englewood Vineyard members rake leaves in the fall, shovel snow in the winter and plant flowers in the spring. When it rains, they form umbrella teams at grocery stores to escort customers to their cars, she says. For July, she’s planned a traditional garage sale in which all items will be labeled “FREE.”
“When you’re out washing windshields in the winter or pumping gas for people when it’s 20 degrees, you’d be surprised how you’re touching people’s lives.
Five area churches combined forces last Saturday to hold a Christmas Party for over 500 area residents at Van Cleve Elementary School in Dayton.
This was no ordinary party, however. Those attending enjoyed a meal brought to their table, an appearance from Santa Claus and Christmas music.
Now in it’s fifth year, the Van Cleve Christmas party is the brainchild of Doug Roe*, pastor of The Vineyard Church of Vandalia. Roe believes Christmas should be shared with others, even if they cannot repay you.
Joining the effort last year and returning again this year is the Salem Church of God of Clayton. Over 120 volunteers from Salem, The Vineyard and other area churches prepared and served a full Christmas meal for neighboring residents.
“We try to have a Christmas celebration for the people of the Van Cleve area,” said Jody McGuire, associate pastor of Salem. “We cook this meal because for many of the people in the area this is their Christmas meal.”
“We serve everyone who comes and then we clean up afterwards,” added McGuire. “We do all of the work to make it more enjoyable.”
The volunteers, from children to the elderly, made this event a reality. This was the December project of The Banquet, a monthly operation that distributes food and clothing that are donated by parishioners of the Salem Church of God. The Banquet tries to reach the people who need their services most.
“We’re going out to help meet the needs of the people in those areas,” said McGuire. “We go to the areas where we can best meet that need.”
A meal, though, was just the beginning of the giving spirit. Groceries, clothing, and other items were available after the party. According to Roe, each family will receive one bag of groceries and one Christmas present was given to each child. The gifts were wrapped by youth groups from the churches. Three Christmas trees were also given away.
“There are no strings attached,” said McGuire. “It’s just a way for us to help make their holiday a little brighter.”
For Linda Simons of Dayton, it was a chance to share Christmas with her mother and daughter.
“I think this is great,” said Simmons as she enjoyed a meal of turkey with all the trimmings. “It does a lot for people who have no Christmas and I’ve been like that before.”
The aspiration of the volunteers is that the people leave not only with full stomachs, but full hearts as well.
“We want to restore people’s dignity over the Christmas season,” added Roe.
*in original publication, Doug Roe was spelled Doug Rowe
Christmas gifts: music, food ‘n’ fun Vineyard Church holds its annual Christmas party for 3,000 people at Dunbar High School. Charlise Lyles
Dayton Daily News click here to view the actual article
After standing in a long line, shifting from one foot to the other in anticipation, Jason Lee held his Christmas present high, poised to dunk an imaginary hoop, despite the shiny green wrapping paper.
“Yeah. This is what I wanted because I like to play basketball,” said Lee, 13 and shy from southwest Dayton.
Lee’s Christmas present was the gift of the Magi, urban style.
He was among about 3,000 people who streamed into Vineyard Christian Fellowship Church’s annual Christmas party at Dunbar High School on Saturday. The outpouring of gifts, food and fun is the highlight of the church’s ongoing urban ministry. The gathering cut across the race and class lines that tend to keep Dayton divided during most of the year.
Vineyard, 2023 Harshman Road, has intensified its outreach at a time when President Clinton has called on churches across the country to step in to aid the poor where the government can no longer afford to. Some churches have balked at the notion. Others, like the Vineyard, see it as their sole mission. Six years ago, Vineyard Pastor Douglas Roe asked eight friends to help him serve Christmas dinner at Dayton Metropolitan Housing Authority’s Parkside Homes. There was no turning back.
On Saturday, Roe’s church members jammed Dunbar. Folks from other churches, jail inmates on work*
*remainder of article is currently unavailable
Dayton – Santa in his velvet suit had help from more than 800 “elf” volunteers Saturday as he weaved through tables dispensing early holiday cheer to more than 1,000 children and their families at the 15th annual Christmas Party for the needy at Sinclair Community College.
The party and dinner, sponsored by the Vineyard Church in Beavercreek with help this year from Phillips Temple CME Church in Dayton, cost more than $32,000, not counting the gifts bought and wrapped by parishioners for the children and those available in na Santa shop for children to pick out for their parents.
As one 9-year-old boy carefully chose a candle for his mom and warm blanket for his grandma, another, age 7 found a fancy purse for his mom and a travel mug for his dad to take coffee to work in.
Besides a sit-down dinner, each family also got a shopping bag full of groceries to take home.
“As a church, we set money aside for it,” said Pastor Doug Roe of the Vineyard Church, creator and founder of the event. The party started about 15 years ago with about 100 volunteers, but has grown by word of mouth, he said. “We spend the whole fall getting ready.”
The idea was “to create a Charles Dickens atmosphere with ham and turkey in a sit-down dinner,” Roe said. This year, Sinclair catered the meal. In years past, parishioners divvied up the cooking chores.
Hana Buchanan, 10, of Huber Heights, a Vineyard Church member dressed up as an angel, helped 4-year-old twins Pierre and Paris Birdsong of Dayton find some iced cookies to eat as their grandmother, Ella Jones of Dayton, sat nearby. She had several bags of wrapped toys and balloons for the twins and two other grandchildren, Herman Buchanan and Barett Birdsong, both 6.
“It was ‘hecky’ fun,” said Buchanan, who’s excitement exceeded the limits of his first-grade vocabulary.
“I think Christmas is all about the party,” Roe said. “God really has come to throw a party in our lives. When the angel said, ‘I bring you tidings of great joy’ – that’s a party.”
Roe hopes eventually to build a Christmas foundation with an endowment so that the party can continue even after he’s gone.
“We’d like to have some type of tradition in the city of Dayton,” he said. “Every city should have a tradition.”
“We can’t keep what we’re blessed with unless we give it away,” said Vineyard member Larry Hopson, helping distribute gifts.
Jason Bunger, associate pastor of Phillips Temple, noted that “for some families, this is their only Christmas.”
Beavercreek – How do you turn a vacant lumberyard into a church?
With a vision and “a lot of elbow grease,” said Doug Roe, pastor of the nondenominational Vineyard Christian Fellowship that moved into expanded facilities this week at 4051 Indian Ripple Road.
The building – formally home to Furrow Building Supplies – boasts a 1,000 seat sanctuary, two basketball courts, a coffee bar and a bookstore that will be ready for the congregation’s inaugural worship service Sunday.
Roe, 48, who led the building’s demolition crew, said the church’s new location – less than ¼ mile east of Interstate 675 – makes it more accessible to residents throughout the Miami Valley.
“The competition we’re going after isn’t other churches,” he said. “It’s people who’d be sleeping in or going to the mall.”
Since establishing his congregation with just seven families at a hotel meeting room in 1991, Roe has attracted more than 1,500 people to his weekly sermons, most recently held at a leased building off Woodman Drive in Riverside.
Vineyard purchased the vacant Furrow building for $1.6 million in February, and contractors from ABS Construction in Dayton have completed about $1.2 million in renovations in the past three months, Roe said. Funding has come from bank loans and church member donations, he said.
“It will be the first time in our church’s history that we get to control our own destiny, and not a landlord,” Roe said.
Roe attributed the Vineyard’s success to thinking “outside the building, outside the box.” Church members help more than 500 families with grocery purchases each week and offer cooking and GED preparation classes along with Bible studies, he said.
“It seems like the more we give away, the more it keeps coming back,” said Robin Barnes of Centerville, the vineyards children’s pastor.
Roe, who graduated from Beavercreek High School in 1972, has gone door to door around his new neighborhood to offer personal invitations to the church he called a “building recycling” project.
“I really wanted something practical, clean and nice,” Roe said about the new church. “I really wanted to give something back to the community.”