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Emmaus Christian ChurchInnovative and effective ministry

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Emmaus Christian Church of Indianapolis is a congregation that prepares people for a new, exciting phase of life with Christ.

It is a worship home for those who are truly ready to leave pain, bad habits, mistakes and lack of forgiveness behind to reach their full potential for success.

In other words, don’t expect to enter Emmaus’ elegant, spacious sanctuary each Sunday as a mere spectator. If you are ready to make transforming changes and surrender your life to God’s direction, Emmaus is here to help.

“This is not the place to come if you don’t really want to change,” said Henzy Green, senior pastor of Emmaus, which is located at 3919 Lafayette Rd. “If you want something better in life, we are here for you.”

He noted that far too often people are invited to churches for general Sunday preaching, but are left alone to figure out what specific personal changes they should make to fulfill the purpose God has for their lives.

“You might not realize what’s holding you back. Everyone else may realize it, but they wont tell you,” noted Green. With a look of compassion and concern on his face, he added, “How can I say I love you, and then leave you alone?”

Emmaus is looking forward to reaching out to more people, and is currently holding its annual pastor’s appreciation celebration. This year’s event features special guests, such as Bishop Larry Trotter and national recording artist Angela Spivey.

Emmaus has grown significantly since it opened with four members in 2002 and began holding worship services at an old movie theater on W. 86th St. Green underwent an interesting journey before accepting his call to ministry and developing the vision of a new church.

After graduating with degrees in marketing and business administration, Green saw success as an entrepreneur. During the 1980s and 90s he was best known as an owner of the popular Indianapolis nightclubs Faces and Fitzgerald’s.

“But after a while things got difficult and I began seeking God,” Green recalled. “He said to me, ‘I gave you 10 years to do what you wanted to do, now it’s time for you do what I want you to do.’ ”

Soon after, Green sold his clubs and worked as a motivational speaker for six years. He also felt a calling to preach, but he ran from it because he had grown up in the church and witnessed the sacrifices pastors are often required to make.

However, he heard a sermon about ministry at Light of the World Christian Church, his home congregation at the time, and felt it was speaking directly to him. Green finally accepted his call after attending a Christian conference, where the speaker suddenly asked Green to stand up and said he should be preaching.

“I realized that it was not about me, but the lives that could be transformed through the ministry God instructed me to build,” Green said.

Green attended Christian Theological Seminary and was ordained into ministry at Light of the World under Bishop Tom Benjamin.

Green and his wife, Nicole, along with a dedicated membership, built Emmaus into a congregation that develops stronger relationships between believers and Christ as well as each other.

Emmaus has also become known for innovative outreach programs designed to attract people who don’t attend church on a consistent basis.

The best known offering is the free “Thank God It’s Friday” concerts, which are held occasionally each year and have featured famous gospel artists such as Donnie McClurkin, Beverly Crawford, Dorothy Norwood, Smokie Norful, Tramaine Hawkins and many other renown performers.

Emmaus’ success in hosting the events is owed largely to Green’s contributions as an assistant to the board of directors of the Gospel Music Workshop of America, as well as his wife’s work in the recording industry.

Recently national recording artist Lamar Campbell, who once performed in a group produced by Green, became director of worship at Emmaus.

Emmaus is currently located inside Lafayette Square Mall, and is using its location to reach people in the busy northwest-side area with activities such as a the New Church Radical Praise party for youth, ministries that assist students and parents with studies and various conferences designed to address specific issues faced by Christians.

In one conference that targeted women, the Greens used an effective approach that yielded phenomenon results. Male models took the stage, each representing a type of man with bad attributes, such as an abusive boyfriend, unfaithful husband or molesting father.

“Man it was unbelievable,” Green said. “We told the women to go up to the men, and things got really intense. They were shouting at the men. We had women in their 50s and 60s asking, ‘Why did you abuse me when I was a child?’ Then we asked the women to pray a prayer of forgiveness. Many of them said they felt so much peace after that conference.”

Pastor Green noted that Emmaus would not be where it is today without the help of First Lady Nicole, who often serves as a worship and ministry leader.

“She is my best fiend, and I’m blessed to have such a great ministry partner,” he said.

Bishop Benjamin, Green’s mentor at Light of the World, said he had no doubt that the Greens were called to lead an outstanding ministry.

“Pastor Green is one of my sons who has made me very proud,” Benjamin said. “He has a bold, innovative ministry dedicated to reaching the ‘now’ generation with the Gospel of Jesus Christ. He is assisted by his First Lady, Nicole, who brings energy and excellence to the table. This is a son and daughter in whom I am well pleased.”

Celebrate with Emmaus!

Join Emmaus Christian Church for its pastor’s appreciation celebration all month with special events featuring Elder C. Shawn Tyson of Christ Church Apostolic (Sunday April, 11 at 9 a.m.); Bishop Larry Trotter and Angela Spivey (Thursday, April 15 at 7 p.m.); Dr. Edward Wheeler, president of Christian Theological Seminary (Sunday, April 18 at 9 a.m.); and Bishop Thomas G. Benjamin of Light of the World Christian Church (April 18 at 4 p.m.). Emmaus is located near the southwest corner of Lafayette Square Mall, 3919 Lafayette Rd. For more information, call (317) 388-1466.

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