Community Grace Brethren Church of Long Beach, California (Dale Workman, pastor) has been working with the families living on Andy Street in their community since 1966 when the church facility was built on the property at 5885 Downey Avenue.
Many of the area children have joined Community Grace for Sunday school, Vacation Bible School, birthday parties for Jesus, Easter egg hunts, Harvest festivals, and other events over the years.
Pastor Workman says, “Most recently we have been working with the ‘Andy Street Community Association,’ a non-profit organization (with one of our church elders serving on the board) designed to encourage and build up the community by providing opportunities for education and training, participation in various community activities, museums, theatre and drama, historical celebrations, helping with food distribution to those in need. . . the list of opportunities is continually growing.”
Several groups use the church facilities for meetings or education or just plain fun, Workman says, and the Andy Street Community Association board meets monthly.
The Ambassadors, both adult and youth, have and are using the facilities for educational classes and training on a weekly basis. Currently the youth are enjoying a cooking class with executive chef Michael Poompan of the Long Beach Renaissance Hotel teaching the class. To read a recent news article about the cooking class, click here.
The apartment owners hold meetings once a month, and the tenants association have a group that meets in the church facilities. There is also a computer lab available for use by the community. A local Nar-Anon group uses the facilities one night a week.
Workman says, “We are always looking for ways to partner with the community to provide and encourage a life of security and a future with a never ending hope.”
This fall the church sponsored “A World of Thanksgiving” event on Sunday November 6 with foods from around the world, (foods from other cultures) and gifts donated or purchased from local businesses. There was no program, the event was just a get-to-know-you opportunity for those in the community, said Workman, “trying to remember them by name wherever we might see them…creating relationships of love and hope through thanksgiving to God!”