The Herald Bulletin

Morning Update

Annual Report: Health & Public Service

March 28, 2012

Area churches hope to spread message through outreach programs

Madison Park Church of God senior associate pastor Rolland Daniels believes that area churches have plenty of room for growth.

Daniels, who has been at the so-called “megachurch” for the last seven months, estimates that the congregation of Madison Park has grown by etween 150 and 200 members since he has been there. As the area’s largest and most visible church Madison Park claims a membership of well over 2,000 people. However, the county as a whole is somewhat behind when it comes to religious presence.

According to, an organization which compiles statistics and research on most cities in the United States, surveys show that roughly 35 percent of Madison County residents identify themselves with a religious affiliation.  That is well below the national average of 48 percent, while the state average hovers around the 40 percent mark.

Daniels thinks the key to reaching more people is “getting outside the walls” of the church.

“A big part of what we do is outreach into the community,” Daniels said. “We want to continue having that commitment to the community and challenge our members on a weekly basis to engage with others and help them.”

Daniels emphasized strongly the need for community service no matter what religion or church one belongs to.

“This is not something that should be specific to church initiatives,” he said. “It’s part of our lives as believers to do good for others. We want to be a tangible representation of our church and God’s love.”

Madison Park and The Greater Light Church of Anderson teamed up with many volunteers from all walks of life late last year for the “Do Something” campaign, donating more than 4,000 hours of labor to help improve and renovate throughout the city. Programs like “Do Something” and the Dove Harbor shelter for women and children have become rallying cries in the missions of Madison Park and other churches in the area.

While that work outside the church doors is regarded as universally important, Daniels said that regularly attending a church, no matter which one chooses, can be a source of of comfort in difficult times and believes strongly in that aspect of religious life as well.

To that end, Madison Park recently began a Saturday night service, an attempt to reach out to different groups who may not otherwise attend.

“Church is often a place that imperfect people come,” he said. “Unfortunately, the reality is that there is a lot of brokenness out there in the world today. For many, the church is a place where you can go and be yourself, find a sense of community and solace, an opportunity to feel welcomed and loved.”

Text Only
Annual Report: Health & Public Service
  • 0323 news AU 029.jpg Ivy Tech, AU engage students in community

    Though Ivy Tech is a system divided into 14 statewide regions with a total of hundreds of educational sites, community-based programs like the clinic help anchor a campus to a specific locality.

    March 28, 2012 1 Photo

  • 1223_news_Brown_02.jpg Brown leads student volunteers

    Many people don’t really know what the Urban League of Madison County has to offer their community. But Lindsay Brown, the organization’s president and CEO, hopes that will change soon.

    March 28, 2012 1 Photo

  • 1217 United Way 1.jpg Nonprofits rethinking the way they do business in today's economy

    United Way of Madison County president Nancy Vaughan has banded together with other local nonprofit organizations, business and local government agencies to find ways to stretch every dollar her organization receives.

    March 28, 2012 1 Photo

  • 0305 news Operation Love food bank18a.jpg Operation Love has big goals

    Operation Love Ministries may not have a huge budget, but the power of a large volunteer group and helpful spirit help the faith-based nonprofit have a giant impact in the lives of those it seeks to help.

    March 28, 2012 1 Photo

  • 4 AR_School budget story 23a.jpg Madison County school districts weather ups and downs

    It was another year of ups and downs for Madison County schools as some districts reaped the benefits of legislation like school choice while others suffered from it.

    March 28, 2012 1 Photo

  • Buck struggles with South Madison budget

    With the economy in a recession, schools such as South Madison are facing many challenges with budget cuts.

    March 28, 2012

  • 1015 news do something 034.jpg Area churches hope to spread message through outreach programs

    As the area’s largest and most visible church, Madison Park Church of God claims a membership of well over 2,000 people. However, the county as a whole is somewhat behind when it comes to religious presence.

    March 28, 2012 1 Photo

  • Main Street ministry small but full of life

    Anderson’s Main Street Church of God has been around for nearly one hundred years. Lately, the congregation has been reinvigorated with new members and a spirit of outreach, proving that you can indeed “teach an old church new tricks.”

    March 28, 2012

  • Local unions fight for fair wages, benefits

    For the past 20 years, the firefighters union has been a right-to-work union, according to John Smith, president of the Anderson Firefighters Local 1262. Despite this, there has been a 98 percent involvement rate among firefighters in Indiana.

    March 28, 2012

  • 2 AR_Scott Calhoun FOP president 06a.jpg Unions seek to make city government more efficient

    With the passage of House Bill 1001, unions are prohibited from forcing workers to join or pay dues and fees to a labor union. The bill was mired in controversy, which included a walkout by many democratic legislators during last year's session.

    March 28, 2012 1 Photo

More Resources from The Herald Bulletin
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide

Generally speaking, how good are relations among people of different races in the Anderson area?

Very good
Very bad
     View Results