Americus Times-Recorder, Americus, Georgia

Church Briefs

November 21, 2012

Ellaville church celebrates one year

AMERICUS — On Nov. 13, 2011 there were 17 people who met in the living room of Eric and Kendra Dixon on Green Road in Schley County to worship. That was the humble beginnings of what is now the Oasis Church of Christ in downtown Ellaville.

The group of Christians met in the Dixon house for the first few weeks before securing a storefront on Church Street in downtown Ellaville. Since that time, the congregation has grown to an average of 40 in attendance at their Sunday morning services.

The Oasis Church of Christ is an nondenominational church, meaning there are no headquarters, conferences or conventions. They are attempting to follow the Bible only and to be the church that can be read about in Acts chapter 2. The preaching at Oasis is biblical and presented each week in relevant ways so that it is practical and useful to the lives of those in attendance.

The preaching duties are divided among three of the members: Eric Dixon, Tim Estes and Dennis Jones. These men alternate Sundays preparing and presenting a message. While there are a few churches of Christ in the Southwest Georgia region, prior to the establishment of the Oasis Church of Christ, there was not a congregation in Schley County.

“There was a need for this in Schley County and we’ve been very well received by this community,” said Dennis Jones. “Now that we have gotten our feet underneath us and God has blessed us with a very nice place to worship, we hope to see even more people come to be a part of our church family here.”

Most recently, the congregation moved to a very prominent location in downtown Ellaville at 39 Main St., in the former Amelia’s building. This facility is much larger and is located at the corner of Church and Main streets, giving it prime visibility.

“We’re so grateful to Robbie and Harriet Pilcher for allowing us to rent this building,” said Eric Dixon. “Not only does it provide us with plenty of space but it also allows us to do many community events and tell more people about Jesus and his church that meets here.”

One of the main questions that has been asked has been: What is the church of Christ and how is it different?

“The church of Christ is the church that Jesus established on the day of Pentecost in Acts the second chapter,” said Tim Estes. “We’re not trying to be different or judgmental of others; we’re just simply trying to follow the pattern of worship that we read about in the New Testament.”

It is really a very simple worship service on a typical Sunday. The church begins at 10:30 on Sunday mornings with coffee and fellowship. This gives everyone a casual time to talk to each other in a comfortable environment. The worship service begins at 11 a.m. each Sunday. There is no choir, no solos and no instrumental music. The congregation sings together being lead by one of the men of the church. There are public prayers offered by different men in the church and a lesson is presented that is from the Bible.

Each week, an offering is taken for the members of the Oasis church to support the work of the local congregation. Those who are visiting are not expected to give of their money. Communion (the Lord’s Supper) is also taken each week so that Christians can reflect on the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ. At the close of the sermon each week, an invitation is offered so that if anyone would like to be baptized or would like to ask for the prayers of the church family, they can make those intentions known at that time. The mission statement of the Oasis church of Christ is “To connect people to God and to each other.”

  In their first year of worshipping together, this mission is being accomplished. There are several new Christians and new relationships that have been formed because of this great church. On Sunday, November 11th a celebration Sunday has been planned called: “The Stones Cried Out” and members of the church will given written and video testimonies of what being a part of this church has meant to them over the past year. A barbecue dinner is planned for lunch after the service. The community is invited to attend and to ask questions. May God continue to bless the efforts of the people at the Oasis church of Christ in Ellaville.

 

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