Archive for the ‘Brookside’ Category

Maybe you’ve seen the yellow bags in Northview Church’s lobby. Here’s your opportunity to follow the yellow bag’s journey from Northview to home.

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Thanks to Dennis McClintock for the photos!


According to the National Education Association (NEA) website in an article entitled Facts about Child Nutrition, “Missing meals and experiencing hunger impair children’s development and achievement. Studies published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, Pediatrics, and the Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry document the negative effects of hunger on children’s academic performance and behavior in school. Hungry children have lower math scores. They are also are more likely to repeat a grade, come to school late, or miss it entirely.”

Former Chair of Gleaners Food Bank and current City Mosaic staff member, Carrie Petty knows a thing or two about the fight against hunger. Petty put it bluntly, “One in six Hoosiers are hungry and there is currently no food system for support over holiday breaks. The church must stand in the gap.” Petty also stated, “There is no end in sight to the current hunger crisis and we are heading towards a hunger cliff when government cutbacks come into play. Our food lines are getting longer each month. There are over 5,000 malnourished (kids) in IPS alone.”

This Christmas season, Northview decided to use its Christmas concert to “stand in a gap.” The proceeds from concert ticketing will be used to provide lunches for kids at inner-city schools who aren’t able to get a nutritious lunch during their Christmas break. Northview’s Outreach Pastor Wayland Thompson explained why. “We knew we wanted to make a big impact in the city. We figured that if we charged a small ticket price for the Christmas concert, that due to the popularity of the event, we could make a huge difference in the lives of some of our neighbors on Indy’s east side. We are partnering with Brookside Church and City Mosaic to be more involved in School 54–and through deepening this existing relationship over the last year, we have been able to get to know many of the families, teachers, and administrators. The more you get to know someone, the more you are invited into their lives and see opportunities to be a blessing,” said Thompson.

The Christmas concert raised $20,000. The money will impact over 1,200 kids that attend Indianapolis Public Schools (IPS) 54 and 15. Student populations at both schools are over 95% reduced/free lunch which means the majority of students depend on the breakfast and lunch they receive through school as their main source of nutrition for the day. Food boxes will contain items such as tuna, cereal bars, fruit cups, oatmeal, soup and pasta.

Northview’s idea has caught the attention of other organizations in the area. Thompson said, “Because of our partnership with City Mosaic, A Partnership of Churches—the idea that was born at Northview—was shared with the other City Mosaic church partners. One church in particular, Connection Pointe Church in Brownsburg, organized a food drive to coincide with the purchase of the food. The public schools in Brownsburg found out and did a drive for their students at every school in their system.”

Students standing in the gaps for other students…. so how did that work out? Thompson exclaimed, “Not sure how to describe it other than it (food) was stacked seven feet high and covered the entire stage in the Brookside gymnasium.”  Thompson also pointed out that other churches were involved at different levels.

Thompson commented on the synergy of the groups involved. “The coolest part of this story is that because churches and communities came together and caught the vision to feed students over the winter break, not all of the money raised from the Christmas concert was needed to purchase food.  Because there was so much food donated, we will be able to use some of the money raised to impact the neediest of students over spring break in a few months. It’s so encouraging to see our partnership with City Mosaic bring churches of all different backgrounds together to make an impact for those in need.”

There’s no shortage of gaps to stand in so please consider getting involved. Thompson gratefully concluded, “I am so thankful to be a part of a church that gives so freely. There are so many opportunities to serve at School 54 and Brookside right now. I would invite everyone to come and meet some incredible neighbors in the city.”


Christmas shopping, lights, presents and visits to Santa Claus are all underway the last few weeks before Christmas. In all the hustle, bustle and gift-giving madness that consumes us every December, do we ever really stop to think of those who are less fortunate? Or those who are not part of our own family and circle of friends?

Northview’s Christmas Compassion does just that and has caused a shift in the church’s mindset.

Christmas Compassion 2013 (by Denise McCool)

Northview’s Christmas Compassion tree (photo by Denise McCool)

This year marked the third annual Christmas Compassion which was born of other Christmas charity drives in prior years–Share the Blessing and Christmas Outside the Box. Through Christmas Compassion, Northview asks church attendees to take a tag from a Christmas tree and buy something listed on the tag. The tags are classified by age group and gender. They list a need, want and family item. Through this drive, Northview was “able to see the thankfulness from each family,” said Shanna Thompson, Northview’s Good Neighbor Coordinator.

These are some of the items families brought back to church to donate: socks, underwear, hats, gloves, clothes, toys, books, board games, diapers, wipes…and a whole host of other items!

The gifts are all going to local families in Hamilton and Marion Counties. Specifically, the gifts go to Life Centers which serve women in crisis pregnancy, Head Start of Hamilton County which provides preschool to underprivileged families, Indianapolis Public School 54, Good Samaritan Network, Brookside Community Church and a few Latino churches in downtown Indianapolis.

“Each of the families receiving the gifts are extremely thankful for each item,” said Thompson.

Leave us a comment! What comes to mind when you see this picture?

Photo by Dennis McClintock

Photo by Dennis McClintock


Jamie Wildt came to Brookside Community Church (BCC) in July 2008 seeking a yellow bag of groceries at the BCC food pantry and found the family of God. In no time, Wildt began to learn and grow spiritually and to serve in a variety of ways. Within a couple of years, Wildt was leading BCC’s nursery. Most recently, she took on the additional role of serving as point person to help Life Groups who come from partnering churches to serve on Sundays.

Brookside Community Church in Indianapolis

Brookside Community Church in Indianapolis (photo by Dennis McClintock)

For about seven years, Wildt worked in the Brookside neighborhood foundry grinding steel on automotive engines. She rented an apartment a short walk from BCC and was content being single with two dogs. Last year her teenage daughter Erika moved to Indy to live with her. This event changed Wildt’s perspective. She wanted to offer Erika more than what she’d been settling for. She’d heard BCC Pastor Frank Stone’s vision of moving Brookside Community Church congregants from being renters in the neighborhood to becoming homeowners and she wanted to be a homeowner. Her desire seemed far out-of-reach because her debt was out of control.

Ready for change, Wildt followed God’s roadmap for debt-free living through the Crown Ministries curriculum offered at BCC. She quickly found God’s promises to be true as she moved from the bondage of debt to financial freedom, flexibility and opportunities. Within a few months, Wildt was tithing regularly and putting into action her plan to pay off her outstanding bills. As she demonstrated faithfulness in stewardship, God blessed her with new employment at Safeway Moving Systems through Ed Hart, a member of the Brookside Community Church Board.

The desire for home ownership still seemed to be out of Wildt’s grasp. She was burdened with years of poor credit. It was, however, in God’s hands. He had begun to move upon the hearts of homeowners J.D. and Liz Collar. The couple owned a home not too far from the Brookside community and wanted to sell it. Upon hearing Wildt’s story, they offered to sell her the home and be her mortgage lender. God met Wildt’s need through their generosity to overcome the stumbling block of poor credit that would have kept Wildt from borrowing from a bank to owning her first home.

“The best part about being a homeowner is feeling like my hard work has paid off,” Wildt said.


“During the most important formative phase of a child’s life, many children, today, are without the nurturing, loving influence of a caring father and mother. The results are all around you. Have you noticed the lack of civility in many young people? Have you observed the surly, ‘in your face’ lack of respect for older people and for authority at any level? How did we get to this state of affairs with the next generation? Whose responsibility is it to rear our children anyway? The Scriptures make it very plain: Proverbs 22:6 (KJV) ‘Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not depart from it.’” (J. Davy Crockett III, 2009).

Northview is a charitable church, always doing the work of the God and following the Bible.  Northview understands the importance of scripture and duplicating what God has instructed. They do this through a variety of outreaches and with understanding of people’s needs. They reach out to children who might not otherwise be exposed to the kindness of people or introduced to God’s kingdom. Northview realizes how important it is to show others contentment, and especially children.

Mark 10:13-16 (NIV) “People were bringing little children to Jesus for him to place his hands on them, but the disciples rebuked them. When Jesus saw this, he was indignant. He said to them, ‘Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these. Truly I tell you, anyone who will not receive he kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it.’ And he took the children in his arms, placed his hands on them and blessed them.”

When given an opportunity children will learn and share. The innocence of children is often taken for granted by adults; we need to realize and harvest these moments in their lives.  Northview has realized this, which is why they have extended these valuable lessons to a school that might not otherwise experience these gifts.

Shanna Thompson, Northview’s Urban Outreach Coordinator, talked about Northview’s partnership with School 54 in the Brookside Community area, a place where Northview has established relationships and conducts Christian outreach continuously. IPS School 54, also known as Brookside Elementary, is one of the many elementary schools in Indianapolis serving children in grades K through 6. It’s located near Brookside Community Church, where Northview has served for several years in the heart of the Brookside neighborhood. School 54 is home to more than 700 students.

Northview’s passion for the people of the Brookside Community has taken them past simply serving at Brookside Community Church and into investing in the lives of these students. When asked about the impact of Northview in the Brookside Community and why School 54 was chosen as an investment, Thompson shared, “Northview has had an impact in this community through Brookside Community Church for several years now. We are invested in the community and have been a consistent support in the lives of the people who call Brookside Neighborhood their home. It was a very natural fit for us to begin impacting the next generation here in this community.”

Northview has already been having an impact at the school over the last year with more than 10,000 Box Tops collected to help raise money for the school, 750 backpacks (one for every child attending School 54) and multiple other classroom support items such as Kleenex and hand sanitizer. As school began in early August, Northview attendees were there to welcome children back to school, provide backpacks and pray over the entire school building alongside teachers and staff. As you can see, Northview has been giving resources and time. But it is time to simply do more than give, it is time to act … and to have an impact!

Northview prepares backpacks for IPS 54 (photo by Drake D'Ambra)

Northview prepares backpacks for IPS 54 (photo by Drake D’Ambra)

Lives can be changed by tutoring a student, being a lunch buddy, reading with a child, or simply supporting a teacher by making copies and cutting items. All that is needed is a willingness to be consistent in the life of a child for 30-60 minutes each week.

Learn more about how you can use your talents to be involved in the next generation! Contact Shanna Thompson:


When asked about her title at Brookside Community Church, Liz Hickman laughs, “I wish I had one. Or, maybe I should say, I wish I had just one!” The truth is, Hickman wears many hats for Brookside Community Church, Northview’s partner church in Indianapolis.

Liz Hickman’s hats have included serving as coordinator of events, volunteers, and women’s ministry. She has served as church administrator and coordinated the meal’s ministry.  Some of her roles have emerged during her five years of service, and others she has served as interim.

“Visit anytime at Brookside and you will hear people say they can’t imagine how Liz juggles so many things,” says Northview volunteer, Megan McGuire. McGuire has worked with Hickman for four years, coordinating Brookside’s After School Program and other events for Northview Students. “She is an amazing person, committed to bringing the Kingdom to the neighborhood one day at a time, one life at a time. Her love and encouragement for the community are extraordinary.”

Liz Hickman helps coordinate Northview Students' After School Program at Brookside Community Church

Liz Hickman coordinates Brookside’s After School Program for Northview Students (photo by Dennis McClintock)

Hickman said the word “helper” best sums up her job with Brookside. She fills in the gap when there’s a need and no one to meet it. Whatever needs to be done–she does!

“Liz has an incredible heart for the congregation, especially the women at Brookside Community Church. She is patient and perseveres through the victories and short comings in the lives of those she serves,” says Shanna Thompson, Northview’s Good Neighbor Coordinator.

Hickman’s most treasured role is helping people in need connect with Jesus Christ. “The joy of ministry is helping people strengthen their connection with Jesus,” says Hickman. “It’s a tough, tough ministry.” Helping people connect with Jesus makes the hard moments worthwhile. The thing that helps her persevere is helping someone strengthen that eternal connection.

“I have seen her celebrate with someone and then have a tough conversation with the same person days later–all in an attempt to point them toward Jesus and away from the things of this world that they struggle with,” says Thompson.

When asked about outside hobbies and interests, Hickman shared that there’s not much time for other things! The ministry is her life.

Liz Hickman's life is the ministry of Brookside Community Church.

Liz Hickman’s life is the ministry of Brookside Community Church in Indianapolis (photo by Dennis McClintock)

“Liz lives out Micah 6:8 better than anyone I know. She is a treasure!” says McGuire.

“He has showed you, O man, what is good. And what does the Lord require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.” Micah 6:8 (NIV)

Thank you, Liz Hickman, for five years of amazing service. Thank you for standing in the gap...for wearing many hats!

  • Lynn Griffith: Yes... He is everywhere and in everything. I am thankful for that.
  • Kelly Stewart: Thanks for sharing!!!!! I love how God is always present in our everyday lives teaching us and filling us!!!!! And using us to bless others…
  • Teri Knapp: I agree. I hope you realize what an impact you have had on people, not because of your amazing voice, but because we can see your passion for Christ t
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