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      There are times when ministry gets pretty... routine. Making sure that bills are paid, insurance is in place, policies are set, and Board meeting agendas are put together has to be done by someone. But then there are times like today.
      Heather, a tousle-headed 11 year old from our neighborhood, has attended our church for the past few months. Her younger sister suffers from cerebral palsy, and she comes from a typical, poor inner city family. Grandmother, mother, and children all live together to try to make ends meet. She dropped in the church as she was passing by. “I’m an aunt now!” she told us excitedly in the course of the conversation, “my brother’s wife just had a baby boy. He’s in intensive care right now, and my mom is trying to find a way down to Illinois to see them.” We talked about a few other things, and I told her that we would come by to see what we could do to help.
      A few minutes later, we were standing at the front door hearing the whole story. Baby Chase was the first grandchild. The blood type of the mother and baby had caused a severe reaction in the baby. After only five short days of life, the baby had already endured three transfusions and things were not looking good. “I want to be there with them. We called Red Cross to see if they would help with a bus ticket, but they said that they don’t do that unless you’re a veteran. I got a little over $30 in change that we pulled together, but the bus ticket is $52.”
      The idea that anyone would be stopped from something so important by so small an amount of money may not seem believable to you, but for her that $20 might as well have been $2,000.
      We prayed, holding hands, asking God to touch the baby and work a miracle. We gave her $40 for the bus, and sent her on her way. The bus was scheduled to leave at 2:50, and right then it was 2:20. We were just in time.
      Phil, a visitor from Pennsylvania was with me, and as we pulled away he said, “That was really special.”
      That is the reason we’re here. Getting to be the hands of Jesus touching the needs of our inner city is the reason that VICM exists, and it is the reason that I’m a part.
      Yours for souls,
      Eric Himelick for the Victory Team


      Victory Village Shoppe has seen many changes since our doors opened in October 2006. During those four years, we have met many neighbors, sold $75,000 worth of merchandise, and helped several partners to develop businesses of their own, making them more self-sustaining.
      Much of the work that we have done cannot be quantified in dollars and cents. The intangibles have made this piece of our ministry so important over the past few years. People that would never have first walked into our church building walked into our Shoppe and into our lives. In many ways, the past four years have been a tremendous success. Hundreds of people have come through those doors are 3229 E. 10th St. Thousands of conversations have happened – conversations that often focused on Christ and the difference that He can make. The community has benefited from a quality, micro-enterprise incubator "helping people to help themselves.” The successes have been many and real.
      However, in other ways, we have struggled. The goal of VVS becoming self-sustaining has never been met, though through grants and outside support, we have found ways to keep operating. Because we have not owned the building, renting (at $900 a month) has proved difficult. You have to sell a lot of donated items to equal $900 (and that would just cover the rent, not improvements, utilities, or labor.) With our overhead so high, we hoped and prayed that God would provide a way for us to own the building, but it does not seem that it is His plan for us at this time (at least He has not yet chosen to provide those resources).
      So we have again come to the crossroads. The VICM Board of Directors has chosen to move the operations of VVS from our current location to a property nearby at the end of our current lease (September 2010). While this area will be significantly smaller, we will own it, and the monthly utilities will be much less. This drastic reduction in our overhead will translate into an increased ability to put more of our resources into the most important aspects of VVS. While losing some of our overhead, some of the things that we will preserve are:
  • A public place of witness to unbelievers.
  • A place to work together as a congregation throughout the week.
  • A place for discipleship, to teach work skills and life skills.
  • A valuable point of connection with our neighborhood, its people, and its various institutions.
      We plan to work together at this location much as we do currently, making various items, developing small, service-based businesses, and providing a base of operations for the budding Indy Urban Farm, our inner city agriculture operation.
      We will market items online through www.victoryvillageshoppe.org and through our new "VVS mobile store". Instead of staffing a store six days a week, we will target select flea markets, trade shows, and farmer’s markets in and around the city to market our products. Rather than spending our energy trying to get people to come to us, we will take our products to the places where the people are most likely to buy our items. This approach will save us time and money. It will also allow us to devote more of our focus to what now seems to be our natural niche – agriculture.
      With the Victory Acres connection, with a number of empty urban lots available, and with a popular growing interest in urban farming, it just makes sense for us to "bloom where we are planted". (Like most farmers, we want to be out standing in our field).
      We are excited about the potential. Thanks for your support for the work of VVS and VICM over these past few years. To all of the people who donated items, worked at the Shoppe, or gave so that VVS could get its start – Thank YOU! The story of VVS continues, and we believe that the best chapters in that story have yet to be written.
            Your brother,
            Eric Himelick


         Heidi, a 60 year old widow, showed up in our city homeless eight years ago.  She came to stay in the same homeless shelter where our church was meeting at the time.  Our lives intersected, and her story became wrapped up with ours.  For the past eight years, we faithfully ministered to Heidi, loved her, and welcomed her into our lives.  She was a simple lady, but she taught us some profound lessons. 
         A few years ago as she was preparing for a move, she gave nearly everything away so that she would not be an inconvenience to whoever might have to help her move.  I moved all of Heidi’s earthly possession that afternoon in one, small minivan load, but I would gladly have moved a hundred truck loads for someone with such a sweet, caring spirit.  Every week, we took her to the store.  We helped her with her business affairs and helped her catch up on her bills when she forgot to get them paid.  When the state declared her mentally unable to care for herself due to Alzheimer’s, I was appointed as her guardian. I gladly served in that role for these last few months, and I was there at the hospital recently when she passed away. 
         Like many in our neighborhood, her meager Social Security Income was not nearly enough to save anything for a decent burial, and as her guardian, I was perplexed with what to do.  One local funeral home gave me a very difficult scenario:  I could either come up with $2,500 within a day or two or they would have to cremate her.  While we were searching for options, someone suggested that I call Sproles Family Funeral Home in New Castle, IN. I called.
         Not only did Tom respond promptly to the need, but he and his family went above and beyond to make Heidi’s funeral a special time.  Tom’s wife went shopping for a nice dress since Heidi did not own anything nice for a funeral.  They drove all the way from New Castle to Indianapolis and back to secure her body from the hospital then came back to Indianapolis for her funeral.  Because Heidi’s husband had been a WWII Veteran, she was eligible for burial in a national cemetery in Marion, IN.  There were a lot of extra phone calls and extra miles for Tom, but he finished the job with sensitivity, grace, and love.
         Some of our girl’s earliest memories were of Heidi reading to them.  Our family cried as we left that day.  We sorely miss Heidi –  her smile, her laugh, her lovely heart.  While her body is gone, she will forever remain a part of our lives, and one day we will be reunited with her again.
         We raised some money, and we sent the last of her funds to help pay for her funeral expenses.  But it was far short of what it should have cost.  While I wished it could have been much, much more, I know that God will repay Tom in ways I never could.
         He didn’t ask me to say this, and he actually has no idea that I am even telling this story.  But I purposed that day of her funeral that this story had to be told.  It is Christian businessmen like Tom Sproles that preach the Gospel louder and clearer than most preachers ever could.
         During these past nine years, God has touched hundreds of lives through the work of Victory Inner-city Ministries.  Reaching out to the near east side of Indianapolis to homeless friends, needy families, and vulnerable neighbors like Heidi has been our life’s work.  There are times when the burden is pretty heavy.  Loving people means that you stay "stretched out” a lot.  We’re in over our heads most of the time.  It’s hard work.  It’s exhausting work.  The heartbreaks are many, the needs overwhelming, and the darkness is oppressive.  There are times you wonder if anyone cares, if anyone gets it.
         But then I’m reminded that God has His Agents in some very odd and interesting places.  I am often surprised (though I shouldn’t be) by the overwhelming sense of grace that surrounds us.  Some people would call it "being lucky,” but I know better.  This is not mere happenstance.  It is grace, God’s grace, grace that shows up in special packages…like Heidi and like Tom Sproles.
Eric Himelick, Executive Director
Victory Inner-city Ministries, Inc.



  Dear Friends of VICM,

         It's only 48 hours until Christmas in the City! We are so excited to welcome homeless neighbors, people from Victory Chapel, and friends from near and far who will join us for a great banquet and a fabulous evening of music, inspiration, and enjoyment.
         Everyone is welcome, and there will be plenty of food and fun for everyone! We know that this is a really busy time, so if you can't come, we understand. However, we will be making the event available on DVD, so that you can experience it even if you can't be with us because of time or distance. (Let us know if you would like one, and we'll add you to the waiting list.)
         In December 2007, VICM was one of 29 organizations selected by the Indianapolis Center for Congregations to receive a $60,000 matching grant! During 2008, we went through a year-long strategic planning process that helped us identify how best to use the funds. These funds were not to be used for normal operations but to advance the goals and capacity of our organization.
         From that planning process three priorities arose:

  • Evangelism and Discipleship
  • Life together as a community of faith
  • Needs in the congregation relating to unemployment

         All three of our priorities are related and interconnected. They really could be better described as concentric circles. At the core is Evangelism and Discipleship, flowing from that is our life together as a community of faith, and out of that life together are the opportunities and needs in our community of faith relating to employment. For us, life and our life of faith are not disconnected. The economic reality is part of the spiritual reality of our congregation. There is not enough discretionary time and discretionary income to operate the way that many congregations operate. As a result, raising money from outside of our community of faith is important to building capacity for the future of our congregation.
         Evangelism and Discipleship are fundamental to who we are. This includes proclaiming the Good News that God is in Christ reconciling all things to Himself and teaching what that truly means in everyday work and word. Everything that we do and will do is seen through the prism of evangelism and discipleship. It is not enough for us to simply talk about the Gospel and the love of God in abstract terms. We must love not just in word and in tongue but in deed and in truth. Building capacity to meet the needs of our community and community of faith is part and parcel of evangelism and discipleship for us. Whether we are building capacity as a congregation through community development efforts meant to create jobs for the unemployed of our congregation or we are sharing a Bible study together, evangelism and discipleship are fundamentally at work. Making Christ visible is our priority.
         The grant will help us develop these important priorities with things like:
  • Large Van for transportation at Victory Chapel, so that more people can join us
  • Media Systems for Victory Chapel, a way to tell our story so that more people can hear it
  • Development of a new Community Development Corporation, a tool for future development
  • Development of a Retreat Center at Victory Acres for inner city families, bringing the city to the farm
  • Development of Indy Urban Farm, tools and resources bringing the farm to the city
  • Development of Keystone Urban Institute. Resources to help us develop as urban missionaries and train future urban workers for other cities as we reach out

         So far, we have raised $18,000 of the $30,000 that we need to meet our goal for this matching grant. We have a deadline, and we need your help to raise the remaining $12,000. We don't want to let this opportunity pass. We are so thankful for your faithful support, but would you consider a special gift to help us meet this important goal? If so, please mark your donation "Matching fund", and the grant will double your gift.
         From all of us at Victory, we hope you have a very Blessed and Merry Christmas.


         Edward, like many inner city kids, has lived most of his life not knowing his biological father. The steady stream of men in and out of his mother's life is the closest thing that he has had to a role model. His world view and picture of what a man should be has been shaped by rappers, street thugs, and TV celebrities. A couple of years ago, he was expelled from school for drug possession, and since then, he has attended an alternative educational program sporadically. He is on the brink of becoming yet another statistic of our burdened and broken society.
         Without a change, he will become just another 8th grade drop out with limited skills, no earning power, and no real opportunities ahead of him. A couple of felonies and a few babies later, the cycle will be complete. He will have created Edward Junior, leaving his son the same legacy his father left him. It happens again and again. The inner city is full of stories like this.
         Edward moved to the farm a month ago. He has undergone a radical change in lifestyle and schedule. Instead of sleeping in until whenever he wants, doing whatever he feels like doing, and having more time to himself than he can possibly spend productively, he is now up by 6:30a.m. to feed the chickens, learning and working some twelve hours each day, and has precious little free time. He is building character and discipline. While it isn't always easy, it is good for him, and for the most part, he enjoys it.
         Even though summer isn't nearly over, we are already thinking together about the fall and what he is going to do about school. Helping Edward for the summer is great, and it certainly makes a difference. But it's not enough. He needs people who will continue to pour into his life - emotionally, financially, academically, and spiritually - all year round. Edward, and so many others like him, needs people like you and me to continue the work of developing his as a future urban leader. Development is a long and arduous journey with many problems along the way. It requires significant investment of time, energy, and resources, but it is worth every penny.
         Sending kids to youth camp, housing and feeding Edward at Victory Acres, operating our Summer Youth Program, hosting biweekly events for our teens and older children, are all things that cost money. Is it worth it? Absolutely! Are we glad to do it? Sure! But we need your help to make it happen. We need $500 to help with youth camp related expenses, $4,500 to help with the costs of our summer youth program, $2,000 for youth related costs at Victory Acres, and another $1,000 to help with the costs of our regular youth outreaches.
         While $8,000 for youth might seem like a lot of money, the cost of doing nothing is much greater. The years of prison costs at taxpayer expense, the children supported by public welfare because of deadbeat fathers, the crushing burden of poverty, homelessness, and ignorance are just a few examples of the cost of doing nothing.
         Can we really make a difference in problems like these? With God's help, we can be faithful where we are, and through us, He can make a difference. You can help us make that difference by giving to support this important work. Every gift is important. Every penny is used as designated, and our very capable Board of Directors insures that all financial resources are used wisely and well. We know that you have many options of where to invest your money, but I believe that there is no better investment than in the lives and futures of youth.
         As young urban leaders like Edward emerge from broken homes and shattered communities, raised up by the grace of God, the ministry opportunities will increase exponentially. Reaching out to new places, discipling new people, planting new churches - will be increasingly more possible with men and women who know the urban challenges first hand. The opportunities for them are endless!
         But it starts here and now - pouring into our 8 year olds, who in ten years will be our 18 year olds. Developing future urban leaders is a lot like growing a tree - you plant, water, work, and prune, but it is God's miracle of life that makes that tree grow. Thank you for helping us plant and water. Together we can pray that God will give us a bountiful harvest for the Kingdom.

Your brother,
Eric Himelick, Executive Director
Victory Inner-city Ministries, Inc.
P.O. Box 11151
2327 E. 10th St.
Indianapolis, IN 46201


The year is 2020. A lot has changed in the inner cities of the United States. The network of inner city ministries is strong and growing. Exciting communities of faith that were planted just a few short years ago have grown into diverse, committed, collections of believers who have almost daily contact in various ways. The fabric of every aspect of their lives is interwoven. Childcare, agriculture, housing, education, employment, economics - everything they do is evaluated by the rubric, "What is the wisdom of Christ as it relates to this particular issue?" Small childcare cooperatives sprang up to meet the needs of single mothers within the congregation. Community supported agriculture, sharing in the risks and rewards of producing good food that they ate, became a well-known concept. Several families enjoyed exploring different possibilities besides single family housing such as buying triplexes or apartment buildings and rehabbing them together. Many forms of education arose to replace the vacuous public school system reflecting different methods of learning for the different needs of the children being taught. Home schooling cooperatives grew up among parents seeking to share their resources, experiences, and talents with their children, charter schools were launched by other groups of committed Christians, and still others, believing that Christian education was the answer, started Christian Day schools. Entrepreneurship, starting businesses together, provided employment opportunities for people within the local congregations, but it also provided economic development within blighted urban communities. Kingdom economics is now a household word. These Christians have moved beyond the old "Capitalism vs. Communism" debate to embrace a more balanced, Biblical view of economy. The insights that they have gained together as they have taken the Bible seriously may surprise you. And the passion with which they live will infect you.

There had been some rough days and misunderstanding in their past to be sure. People used to think of them as city ministry "do-gooders," helping the down and out but largely irrelevant. Many did not understand why there was a need to start businesses or do community development. "If people can't get jobs in the real world, then we shouldn't try to shelter them," some would say. "If they really wanted to work, there are plenty of places that are hiring," others said. Seeing the ministries as a threat, some responded, "There are plenty of churches here in the U.S. We don't need any more churches!" They were often ostracized through misunderstanding. At first, they were dismissed as fringe by some parts of the church, and later they were seen as extreme by others. Most were clueless regarding the movement's goals of transformation and reconciliation - helping people and neighborhoods through the message and work of the Gospel to become all that God intended for them to be. People just didn't get it. Not understanding, well-meaning people would say things like, "It is so good that you are helping those poor people like that. Working with homeless people and the down and outers is such a needed ministry, but it takes a special person to do that work." Others were more vocal in their criticism, "What are you guys trying to do anyway, start some kind of commune?!"

Meanwhile, the city ministry movement had continued to grow and develop - quietly, effectively, continuing its practical outreach and prophetic work in places that both the world and the church had dismissed. The men and women who rose to the challenge were not those of whom you might have thought. They are common people - no Ph.D's and few M. Div.'s. These weren't "career ministry people." They are single people, couples, and families, young and older, from every walk of life. People who were drawn by the excitement of a community of faith living out the commands of Christ, invading the darkness, making a difference, and being the church. The likely suspects are strangely absent. Yes, there are a few Bible College graduates, but by and large, the communities and the teams are made up of people who "work for a living." They may fix cars, work on houses, teach school, and answer calls in office buildings by day, but don't let that fool you. They are urban missionaries at heart. They moved here on Kingdom business, following something larger than the American Dream. While they understood that people can serve God anywhere, they saw an opportunity in the inner city ? an opportunity to move beyond the isolation of the suburbs and rural places and to simply be together as the church. Without the money, mortgage, and status symbols that went along with living in suburbia, there was a whole lot more space for authentic, Christian stewardship, relationships, and living. They got it. They moved, and the rest is history.

It's 2020, and my family has grown up in the middle of this movement. Kaylynn, my oldest daughter, is now 19. She graduated this last year from high school, but she isn't done learning. After she completes some training at the Urban Ministry Institute, she will add her bright mind and willing heart to the growing choir of voices - young people who were raised singing a different tune. They were raised learning to sacrifice, knowing that their parents were doing something significant, something worth living for and dying for. They grew up with diversity. Racism was never an option, and friends of all colors were welcome in their home and in their lives. The Kingdom was what mattered, and the Bible was not just talked about, it was lived. Loving your neighbor meant something, and witnessing was not for special people or special occasions.

This is not a Victory Inner-city Ministries thing; it's a God thing. What sin has destroyed, grace restores. The light shines into the darkness, and the darkness is not able to overcome it. It is just another chapter in God's Great Story of reconciliation and redemption. No one remembers quite how or where it started, but somehow, someway, the compelling vision of God's Kingdom, His rule and reign, has gripped the hearts of His people once again. And the world will never be the same.

Eric Himelick, Executive Director
Victory Inner-city Ministries, Inc.
2327 E. 10th St.
Indianapolis, IN 46201
(317) 331-0119 - eric@vicm.org




Dear Friend of Victory,
     There have been many challenges this past year, but God has been faithful, and we thank Him for His grace.
     There are several new converts in our Hispanic congregation who have been saved in the last 6 months. Several of them are facing intense spiritual battles right now. Please pray for them. Also pray for Pastor Marcos as he makes a much-needed trip back to Guatemala to visit his family. He is leaving the last of January and will be gone for a month. Also pray for Bro. Fidel and Bro. Rundell as they lead the church in Pastor Marcos' absence.
     Pray for Pastor Steve Gibson and their family as they lead the ministry of Victory Chapel. The daily challenges are great. People in constant need. Praying, visiting, sharing - and then working to support a family too. Pastor Steve is currently leading the charge to start our new Urban Ministry Institute. Our vision is to offer classes in the urban context in conjunction with various Bible Colleges that will train future leaders for city ministry.
     Pray for Jennifer King, Peter Casalino, and the team at Victory Village Shoppe. We face many challenges on this front, but we also have some good news! The Shoppe received a 5 year, $75,000 supporting grant from the Richard M. Fairbanks Foundation, which will allow us time and space to make the Shoppe sustainable and develop a micro enterprise incubator that will spur economic development in our neighborhood.
     Dan Perkins has received a job offer and is considering leaving Victory Acres sometime this spring. We are facing the challenge of replacing him at the same time that we are planning to expand our CSA operation to include an "Urban Garden CSA," farming on empty city lots in Indianapolis. Please pray with us that we and Dan will make the right decisions.
     We thank God for the cabins! What a great blessing they were this last year to many individuals and groups who came to Victory Acres! Now we are looking forward to raising the money and help needed to finish them out on the inside. An example of how they are needed? Prentice has been in relationship with us for over 5 years. He has been up and down as he has struggled with alcoholism. He is currently sitting in jail after his latest bout of drinking and mayhem. He really needs to get away from the city and the influences here. We have talked with him before about going to Victory Acres, but he wasn't ready. We are considering petioning the judge to court-order Prentice to Victory Acres. He could be helping us to finish a cabin while living in one himself. We could use his skills at the farm, and he could use the space that the farm could give to dry out and grow strong. Please pray with us that God will help us to know what is best for Prentice.

     Please pray for our family that God will help us to remain fruitful and balanced. To give you a little idea of where we're headed, here are our goals for the year:
•To love God and to be His child
     •To continue to develop my personal relationship with God through periodic personal prayer retreats, weekly Sabbath time, and daily spiritual disciplines.
     •To leave enough margins in my life so that I may listen carefully to His leading as it relates to this ministry and my life.

•To develop my relationship with my family
     •I don't plan to take trips that exclude my family. We are working on creative ways of traveling together that will allow them to be a part of wherever I go and whatever I do.
     •I plan to keep my family at the core of my ministry experiences. If that means saying no to some opportunities, then so be it. My wife and my children are my primary, earthly responsibility. Only as I feed and shepherd them, will we have anything to give to others.

•To develop our relationship with the ministry team
     •To plan periodic team ministry retreats for prayer and fellowship
     •To take time to talk and to listen to our team members. To not always drive the agenda or work to -get things done,- to take time to be together in ways that will ultimately lead to a stronger, more vibrant team
     •To reach out to the future leaders, partners, and team members who will be important to the city ministry movement in the future

•To develop our relationship you, our supporting partners
     •To regularly travel, speak, and visit supporting churches
     •To travel and speak at various missions conventions and events to share the work of VICM
     •To give all partners regular updates on the ministry
     •To write articles for various publications and to finish our second book
     •To oversee the regular publication of Victory News
     •To schedule services to share the vision of VICM
     •To reach out to new potential partners

     The need in our cities has never been great. We need men and women who are committed to the cause of making Christ visible in our cities. We need partners like you to stand behind us in that endeavor. Thanks for your prayers, encouragement and support. It means so much to know that we have friends like you standing behind us. May God bless you in this bright New Year.

Your brother,
Eric Himelick


"Is there any way you could help me to get my prescriptions filled? I just got out of the hospital this morning after I was robbed," John* said handing me his hospital papers and prescriptions. He came to our church service for the first time after he flagged down our church van walking home from the hospital, and he spent the day with us. Not only did we get his prescriptions filled and share a hot meal with him, but we gave him something more - love. We welcomed him with open arms. He is one of the many who have found a family at Victory.

VICM means so much to so many.

  • To the people of our congregations, it means a place where they are spiritually fed and where there is a family to whom they can turn.
  • To the people of our neighborhood, VICM represents a Christian advocate, a neighbor who cares, and a voice for God's wisdom.
  • To people of every background, we represent a community of faith that is bringing people together - people of diverse interests, ethnicities, and economic backgrounds.
  • To the VICM team, it is a place to serve, a place to share, and a place to learn.

Making Christ Visible is our mission and our message.

During the past few years, God has touched hundreds of lives through the work of Victory Inner-city Ministries. We remain actively involved in compassionate ministry on the near east side of Indianapolis, reaching out to homeless neighbors and needy families. Everything rises and falls on relationships. Within the context of caring, informed relationships, we help in a variety of ways - food, housing, clothing, emergency assistance, jobs, and so much more.

When Dania* came stumbling in - homeless and scared, she found a lot more than she expected. Not only are she and her children housed now, but they found a home - a place to belong - at East 10th. The same is true of many more. Welcoming people into our homes and into our lives is what we do. But we are not just about short-term, feel-good solutions. We are making long-term steps too.
Victory Village Shoppe is an engine for economic development in our neighborhood. We are seeing businesses started that benefit our congregation and our neighborhood in significant and far-reaching ways. To quote Joe Bowling, a community leader, "Through the development of Victory Village Shoppe, VICM is helping to make an important neighborhood objective a reality. This kind of community-based development is what we envisioned? and what will ultimately make our neighborhood most healthy. This is an important missing piece in our neighborhood, and we applaud the good people at Victory Inner-city Ministries for their leadership and initiative."

Victory Acres, our 114 acre farm outside the city, is about more than just naturally-grown fruits and vegetables. It is about people. At Victory Acres, we envision a safe palce where people can experience farm life, appreciate God's creation, participate in good work, enjoy good food that they have helped to produce, and as a result, draw closer to God and live healthier, happier lives. We welcomed hundreds of people to the farm this past summer. Some came for the good food, some came for the good work, but all left with so much more. God has been good. A 3,000 sq. foot greenhouse, a new well, three new cabins, a walk-in cooler, and a bountiful harvest are just a few of the things that we are thankful for this season at the farm. CSA Manager, Dan Perkins, is a graduate of Taylor University with a Masters Degree in Environmental Science. His expertise is a huge asset to our overall farming operation, and we thank God for him, his wife and their new baby boy.

A lot has happened this past year. And while general giving is up from last year, we currently are receiving just 66% of what we actually needed to meet our budget. To be sure, the work has continued, thanks to the sacrificial labor of everyone on our team. We cannot quit, and we won't, but I wonder what more could be done if we would have had the support we really needed?

Here are the numbers:

  • Annual General Fund Budget - $96,000
  • Annual Missionary Support Budge - $37,500
  • Annual General Fund Income (projected) - $67,500
  • Annual Missionary Support Income - $33,500
  • Total Budget shortfall - ($32,500)

We thank you for your continued partnership with us. We are excited about the future! We have a great team! Marcos and Melina, pastoring our Hispanic Congregation; Steve and Stephanie, pastoring Victory Chapel; My parents and Dan and Julie Perkins, working at Victory Acres; Jennifer King, managing Victory Village Shoppe; Rachelle and I, overseeing operations as Executive Director and representing the ministry abroad - we are just a few of the more visible parts of the VICM team. Behind the scenes are literally hundreds of people - volunteers, staff, supporters, board members, and friends like you who make VICM what it is today and every day.

Without partners like you, we could never do all that we are doing. How is this work possible? Because of churches like yours and people like you! As God touches your heart and you give, you are partnering with us in this work. The problems of poverty, crime, and homelessness plaguing the inner cities across our nation are complex. But the answer is not more government hand outs. The answer lies in the teachings of Jesus, ?To love God with all your heart, and to love your neighbor as yourself.? We are a group of people seeking to live out that message in the inner city. We are learning together what it truly means to be the church in this place.

Because of churches like yours and people like you who have partnered with us in this vital work, we are able to do the work that we do. We are thankful for the real, partnering relationships that we have, and we appreciate each one of you and all you've done this past year to boost the work of the Kingdom here at Victory Inner-city Ministries. As fellow laborers, we will continue ministering to the needs here in the inner city of Indianapolis. Keep in touch. Pray for us, and visit when you can.

In Christian Love,
Eric Himelick, Executive Director
Victory Inner-city Ministries, Inc.

P.S. If you send a gift of more than $20 before December 31, 2008, we will send you our brand new Gospel Quartet CD entitled "Reconciled" as a gift. Just in time for Christmas! Thanks again for your support.


"Remember the Thanksgiving meal last year (click to see video) when we did the cooking together and then had people share what they were thankful for?" We recently took time to reflect as a group on our memories from Victory. "Remember the very first time when Victory Chapel met at the Care Center gym? We used pieces of plywood on top of overturned trash cans for tables... Remember the combined Spanish/English Christmas Eve service? We shared Christmas dinner with over 200 of our neighbors and church people and then had a candlelight Christmas service.... Remember the first team meeting, the sense of closeness and family that we all shared even though we were all from such different backgrounds... Remember the heart-breaking funeral for 3 month old little Annabelle Grace? Remember the day that Victory Village Shoppe opened for business... Remember that first planting day at Victory Acres... Remember Jack, Mary, Jeryl, Bill, Andre, Debbie, Daryl, Thomas, and a whole host of others who have been taken from us. Memories flooded over us.
     I do remember. I'll never be the same. As a young kid, I came to change the city, but the city changed me. The people, the experiences, the stories, and the community have impacted me in profound ways. Watching, listening, helping, and loving have shaped me. Wrestling with real issues has kept me in constant reflection on the authentic Gospel and what it really means to be a Christian. For example, last week we arrived back at the church building a little after midnight, and were confronted with a modern day man (or in this case a woman) among the tombs. Mentally unstable, she had decided to take her chances sleeping on the church steps rather than stay in the shelter down the street. Her story is as long as it is confusing, but her problems were very real. What am I supposed to do about that? What would Jesus do? What should His Church be doing for the Renee-Marie's of this world? I believe I know what Jesus would do ? He would make her whole. He could transform the brokenness of her life in one powerful act of goodness. He would heal Renee-Marie. So why is the Church, the continuing manifestation of Christ in the world, seemingly so powerless? Are we truly following in footsteps of Jesus, or are we doing something else? Have we been sidetracked into doing the good that will ultimately be the enemy of the best?
     Victory Chapel is not a social service organization, and we don?t want to be. Many churches are choosing to go down the road of social services, and I respect their reasons. "Becoming relevant" they call it. But there are some things to consider. How will becoming a "social service provider" fundamentally change the church? Money and power are seductive. How will the resources necessary to "do social service? change us? Is this just one more way in which we are "taken captive" by the world and its system?
     At the heart of the faith-based approach to social services is the idea that the church will enter into the game that is already in progress, learn the rules and play fair. While we may kid ourselves into thinking that we can "change the system for the better," I think we have to understand that this is not our game. In an article published by the Polis Center entitled, "Ten Good Questions about Faith-based Partnerships and Welfare Reform," the author observes, "There is no way for congregations to build the administrative capacity necessary to write grants, administer programs, and evaluate services without changing some of their internal dynamics." One poignant question asked by a civic leader in the same article hit me like a ton of bricks: "If churches do social services, who will do what congregations used to do?"
     Indeed. As the Church collective and as a local expression of the Body of Christ, who are we called to be? Our work must flow from the answer to that question, and we cannot allow the lure of grants, government funding, or resources of any kind to become a deterrent to that mission. We are a group of people in relationship with God and with each other who are walking down the road together in community. What we have are relationships ? that is all, and that is enough. A myriad of programs, goods, and services are offered to our urban neighbors, poor and otherwise. We appreciate the work that these "helping organizations" do, and many in our congregation have benefited from them. Without minimizing the work that they do, we believe that there is an important work for our community of faith ? being an expression of The Church on the Near-eastside of Indianapolis. In the midst of the depravity, brokenness, and emptiness that pervade our neighborhood, our life together as a community of Christ shines like a city set on a hill that cannot be hid. They will know we are Christians by our love.
     As we stand in this sea of need, we are conscious that we do not stand alone. Many of you have given. You are partners who have made this work possible. Victory Acres, Victory Village Shoppe, and the Stranger Project have been direct results of your investment of time, skill, and resources. We work hard to be sure that every penny is used wisely and well. We have come far, and we could never have done it alone.
     This summer has been difficult, and we could really use your help right now. Because of the economy, giving this fiscal year was down 20%. Our team is committed to the work, and because of that, we continue to work even when we don't have funds to support the work that we do. However, it is not without sacrifice. Bills are due. Families need cared for. We are praying and trusting God, but we understand that God uses His people to provide for His work. The finances have become a very heavy load. Would you help us to carry this load? If just 300 people would plan to give regularly each month: 100 at $10, 100 at $25, and 100 at $50, all of the general ministry needs would be met. Many hands make light work. While the cost is great, the investment in lives is priceless. Thank you for giving to the Lord. Believe me, He will remember.
Your brother,
Eric Himelick



Dear Friends,

Many things have changed at VICM in the last year:
- Our family has grown! Welcoming Steve and Stephanie Gibson to the team as the full-time pastor of Victory Chapel. Welcoming Dan and Julie Perkins as the full-time CSA Managers at Victory Acres. They are two key families that will be important in the future of VICM.
- Our work has expanded! We have gone from a small group of people meeting around picnic benches in a park to a growing, thriving, mission-minded, inner-city congregation. We have doubled the size of our CSA, making it possible for us to do more work at Victory Acres. We have changed the focus of the Stranger Project to make it more effective. We have honed the work of Victory Village Shoppe to provide more work and more opportunities than ever before.
- My role at Victory has changed. Stepping away for a period of time in 2007, praying and listening to God, and then refocusing my efforts within the organization was one of the best decisions that I have ever made. Many have not understood, "Are you still working with Victory?" they ask, or "What are you doing now that you are not working with Victory?" The reality is I am as involved as ever but in a different way. I am the Executive Director of the ministry, overseeing the operations of Victory Acres and Victory Village Shoppe, raising support for the ministry, and developing the work as a whole. Steve Gibson is focusing exclusively on Victory Chapel, our growing congregation.
- We are learning! Many lessons can only be learned by experience. As we have prayed, discerned, grown, and expanded, God has been teaching us along the way. He is working in us as He is working through us. As we are learning, others are coming to us to learn what God is teaching us. We will be offering a class in August called "Contemporary Approaches to Urban Ministry," welcoming students and interested individuals to share a week in the life of VICM and to receive college credit. (If you are interested in knowing more, give us a call.)

Yes, much has changed, but some things have remained the same...
- We have not changed our commitment to share the Gospel message in word and deed.
- We have not surrendered our mission of Making Christ Visible.
- With sound fiscal management, we are doing our best to be sure that every penny is used wisely and well.
- We are still depending on partners like you to see the work of VICM go forward.

We are truly blessed to have friends like you. With your help, we are able to offer a faithful witness in the inner-city of Indianapolis. Your gift is an investment in people. People like:

Earlene - A middle aged community lady needing to do some community service started helping out at Victory Village Shoppe. Now she has her own key and code to the Shoppe! She has become a trusted part of the family. While she has been a blessing to us, she is also a blessing to many others from our neighborhood as they come into the Shoppe each day.

Heidi - This elderly widow with no real family to care for her has been a part of our congregation ever since she ended up homeless on the streets of Indianapolis over seven years ago. Victory is her home, and we often hear her say, ?I don?t know what I would do if I couldn?t come to this church. You people are so good to me.? Because of her failing health, we are in the process of becoming Heidi?s legal guardian and will be there for her until God calls her home.

Jessica - A young, struggling, African American single mom with two children. In spite of her three moves in the last six months, she has found a stable home at Victory, and she is growing in her understanding of what it means to follow Christ.

Alone, none of us can do very much, but together, we can make a difference. Thanks for doing your part!


"He will be getting out of prison after spending most of the past eight years behind bars. He was just 16 when he went to prison and now he is 24..." He was an accomplice to the crime. The older perpetrators have long ago been released, but eight years later he is getting out of prison. The story in the letter asking us if we could potentially help Calvin* could have been many different people that we know. Young men filled with rage and hatred have done some horrific damage. Every once in a while a story will jump onto the national screen of attention, but we see it everyday. Some sink down into quiet rage and despair. Some slowly destroy themselves and others. Some end life in a hail of bullets.

I sat with Wallace* a few weeks ago. His wife and children had left him. He was contemplating suicide, and his mother called to see if we would talk with him. The rage that has filled this man's heart is no excuse for all of the wrong that he has done, but it is the reason. His mother was sexually assaulted by her mother's husband (not her father), and that is how he came into the world. Because of the circumstances surrounding his birth, there was a love-hate relationship from the very beginning between him and his mother. At one point, she tried to kill him and spent time in prison for attempted murder. While he did not die, the rage, rejection and bitterness run like a deep, angry current in a rushing river. His name has come up at numerous crime scenes. As Steve and I sat with him at his grandmother's kitchen table, he opened his heart to us, "I'm just tired of being a bad person, but I just don't know what to do." The list of crimes that he has committed is long. "I'm just tired of hurting and hurting people." The talents that could be used to support a family and to make the world a better place have instead been used to support habits and to make the world a more dangerous place.

We prayed with him that day, and we are still praying for him today. While he has not yet chosen to turn fully from the darkness and to walk in the light, he is close. I have talked with him several times since that Sunday we first prayed with him, and he remains open and receptive. I still believe in the power of the Gospel to transform, and I know that even Wallace is not beyond the reach of God's grace.

"How can you help someone like that?" I am often asked. (What they really mean to say is that it seems hopeless.) I don't blame them for asking, I asked the question myself this past week. I was at a meeting of social service providers talking to a man who works with hundreds of ex-offenders helping them to get employment. He had just finished saying that finding employment for convicted sex offenders was very difficult. "How can you help someone like that?" I asked. "I don't help them," he responded, "I just help them to help themselves". He was right. The only way that anyone can be helped is if they decide to take the skills and abilities that God has put into their hands and to use them constructively. We can nurture; we can train; we can encourage, but they must choose to allow God and others to help them.

We have an opportunity for you to help us in our effort to help others. While we cannot go back and change the past, we can nurture, train, and encourage progress in the lives of young men in the future. Some of them could use some time away from the city to learn to do good work. Victory Acres could be that place. However, we need your help in building capacity. We are currently trying to raise $10,000 to build and equip three cabins. We can purchase a 10X16 cabin for just $2,100. With money to insulate and finish it, the total cost is about $3,500 per cabin. We could help more people if we had more housing space, and we could do more at Victory Acres if we had more help. Adequate housing space at Victory Acres is a constant need, but it is also an opportunity. A summer of work at Victory Acres could be the turning point for some young man and help to keep him from a path of destruction.

Would you consider giving to help us with this project? $10, $20, $100, or $1000 - it all adds up. These cabins, the greenhouse, the new walkin cooler, and many other projects will continue to build our capacity for the future. You can check out what is going on and how you can volunteer or help at our Brand New website: www.victoryacres.org. Thanks again for your continued prayers and support.

*names changed

Your brother,
Eric Himelick, Executive Director
Victory Inner-city Ministries, Inc.
2327 E. 10th St.
Indianapolis, IN 46201
(317) 506-3373 - eric@vicm.org


Happy New Year!

It is hard to believe that we have really come this far! 2008 marks the beginning of my tenth year in ministry and seven years for the work of VICM. As we look back on this past year, we realize again that it is God who has sustained us. Thanks to each one of you who have partnered with us over the years to make this work possible. This past year we served nearly 6,000 hot meals and helped countless families with clothing and other basic needs. We blessed over fifty people with temporary shelter, and we helped three families with permanent housing. Victory Acres, our non-profit farm, supplied 73 families with up to f 300lbs. of quality, naturally-grown produce for the year as well as offering agricultural, hands-on educational tours to a variety of school and youth groups. In 2007, we had over 120 elementary, high school and college students, visit, learn, and work at Victory Acres. Three formerly homeless individuals have benefited from transitional employment at Victory Village Shoppe. An average of 95 diverse congregants each week calls Victory Chapel their church home. And we do all of this and much more with an income of less than $200,000 per year.

At this time of year, many people are looking over their stock portfolio and calculating their returns for the tax season. Can I suggest an investment for next year? One that will bring a much return than Wall Street. We could really use your help on some very tangible projects that will benefit many people in our Indianapolis community and beyond. Because offerings cannot support the needs of our congregation, which primarily serves the poor, we have learned to be innovative. Victory Acres and Victory Village Shoppe in the long run will be a means of support for our congregation as well as a great blessing to our community. They are engines for community and economic development. While our Farm and Shoppe are supported by the crops that we raise and the donated items that we sell, we often do not have the money left to invest in capacity building for the future. That is where you come in. Would you help us? Our request is for a few very important capacity-building projects that could help us to build on our track record of the past and blossom for years to come. Here are a few key investment opportunities for you to consider:

Guest worker housing at Victory Acres (just $3,500 per cabin)
We could help more people if we had more space. We could do more at Victory Acres if we had more help. We could have more help if we had the space to keep more people. Adequate housing space for guest workers at Victory Acres is a constant need. From college interns to needy homeless neighbors, we could serve and educate more people if we had more space. We can build a basic cabin for just $3,500. We could even put your name by the door or dedicate it in memory or honor of a loved one. Your cabin will continue to give back for years to come. What an investment!

Development of our transitional employment program for homeless women (just $4,000 per person)
How do you get a job when you're living in a homeless shelter? Our transitional employment program is not just employment training; it is employment. Armed with a job, a work history, references, and a some skills, these ladies now have a much better chance of finding quality future employment. Because they now have an income, more housing doors are opened. (The irony is that if you have no income then you do not qualify for low-income housing.) Many homeless women could move from homelessness to housing with even limited part-time employment. Through our strategic partnership with Wheeler Mission Ministries Care Center, we are helping women to break the cycle of homelessness and poverty. As they become equipped, they will give back, helping others. Your investment will continue growing for years to come.

Capital Campaign for Victory Acres (total $175,000)
While we are making all payments on time, there is so much more that could be done if we could retire the debt on the property at Victory Acres. Would you consider investing in this endeavor? A farm that is providing good work and good food has tremendous potential. Building on six generations of loving care for this land by the Himelick Family, Victory Acres will continue to make a difference for generations to come. We are thankful for everyone who gives - $5, $10, or $20 - no gift is too small. It is gifts like these that sustain this work. Rarely do we receive gifts larger than $100. Anything that you do is significant and important. We are being faithful stewards of these gifts, and we thank God for them. However, we also know that there are a whole different group of resources. There are people like you (and perhaps you) who are looking to invest significant quantities of personal resources in Kingdom work. They want to make a difference. They realize that life is too short to live for stuff. But you are careful. You want your investment to make a difference. Where would God have you to give? Could I make a suggestion? By God's grace and help, we are doing significant Kingdom work and (Lord willing) we will continue to do so for years to come. We have a solid team of leaders. We have a quality Board of Directors. We have good fiscal policy and management. We have a vision that we continue to pursue. Why not invest in the work of Victory Inner-city Ministries? We at VICM will do our utmost to be sure that your investment is used prayerfully and carefully. If I can ever be of service to you, please don't hesitate to contact me directly. May God bless you in this bright new year.

Your brother,
Eric Himelick, Executive Director


Dear Christian Brothers and Sisters,

Dawn and Camile fleeing an abusive situation came to stay with us that week before Christmas. While they came with only the clothes on their back, both Dawn and little, one year old Camile came with a lot of baggage. Dawn, a former prostitute from the streets of Detroit, is now HIV positive. After living through twenty plus years of depravity and destruction, she has come into the grip of grace. Though we cannot "fix" her, we are walking with her.

The church was packed for our very first Christmas Eve Service. It was electric! The smell of the tree, the candles, the lights, the sound of the organ, and the story of Christmas. Dawn slowly stepped to the microphone and sang in her powerful soprano voice, "Long lay the world in sin and error pining, 'til He appeared and the soul felt it's worth?." As the strains of "O Holy Night" died out, I caught a glimpse of the incredible paradox that is Christmas in Urban America. Incredible pain meeting incredible love. Tragedy meeting hope. The darkness meeting the light. It is the story of the resurrection, and it's why we're here. What sin kills; grace restores. No one is beyond His reach. Whatever may have happened on those city streets, Christmas is our reminder ? Emmanuel, Our God, is with us.

During the past seven years, God has touched hundreds of lives through the work of Victory Inner-city Ministries. We remain actively involved in compassionate ministry on the near east side of Indianapolis, reaching out to homeless neighbors and needy families. For us, everthing rises and falls on relationships. Inside of those relationships we help in a variety of ways - food, housing, clothing, emergency assistance, and jobs, but it is all within the context of caring, informed relationships.

Victory Village Shoppe, our thrift shop and home furnishings store, helps by employing people from our congregation and community, as an engine for economic development in our neighborhood, and as a capacity builder for the future of our ministry.

The Stranger Project, from Jesus' words "I was a stranger and you took me in," is providing two families in our congregation with supportive housing and the ability to provide temporary shelter to others.

Victory Acres, our 114 acre farm outside the city, provides a place for people who need to rebuild away from the pressures of the city, to do good work and to produce good food. A new 3,000 sq. foot greenhouse, a new well, a new walk-in cooler, a drip-feed irrigation system, and a bountiful harvest are just a few of the things that we are thankful for this season at the farm. We are looking to build several cabins and a camping area this coming spring.

A lot has happened this past year. And while overall giving is down, the work has continued to grow and expand! We are excited about the future. While we have bitten off a lot, we are chewing it together. We have a great team! Marcos, Melina, Steve, Stephanie, Rachelle, and I are just a few of the more visible parts of the VICM team. Behind the scenes are literally hundreds of people - volunteers, staff, supporters, board members, and friends like you who make VICM what it is.

Without partners like you, we could never do all that we do. How is this work possible? Because of churches like yours and people like you! As God touches your heart and you give, you are partnering with us in this work.

The problems of poverty, crime, and homelessness plaguing the inner city are complex. But the answer is not more hand outs. Giving a hand out is not the same as giving a hand up. There are answers to the social problems facing our city, but the answer is not more government programs or even more charity. The answer lies in the teachings of Jesus, "To love God with all your heart, and to love your neighbor as yourself." We are a group of people seeking to live out that message. We are learning together what it means to be the church in this place.

Because of churches like yours and people like you who have partnered with us in this vital work, we are able to do the work that we do. We are thankful for the real, partnering relationships that we have, and we appreciate each one of you and all you've done this past year to boost the work of Victory Inner-city Ministries. As fellow laborers in the Kingdom, we will continue ministering to the needs within our fellowship and beyond here in the inner city of Indianapolis. Keep in touch. Pray for us, and feel free to visit us anytime you can.

In Christian Love,

Eric Himelick


Here is a video clip of our Thanksgiving Dinner.


I recently spent ten days in the Turks and Caicos Islands ministering with the Lighthouse churches in the area of outreach and evangelism. God helped me, and I thank Him for the opportunity to be a blessing in that place. A British colony, it is a beautiful stretch of islands less than a 100 miles from both Haiti and Cuba. Because of the newly thriving economy based on tourism, there are people coming here from all over the world to live and to work. The population is growing fast. The churches here will soon find themselves in the middle of a very diverse cultural scene and have more financial resources than they've ever had before. They are standing at a crossroads. Ministry in the next ten years will look radically different from all that they have known before. Reaching out to this new diverse community will challenge them to their very core.

The training and talks that we had had that week centered on a fundamental question, "What does it mean for them to BE the church in this place?" Without a clear understanding of what they are, they can never adequately answer the question of what they should be doing.

My hope and prayer is that I have been a help to them in their journey. It has certainly been an adventure for me to come along side of them, to hear them share, and to try to impart my limited knowledge and resources.

Thanks to all who have given and supported so that I could go. I would be glad to share some pictures and my report of the trip with you if you are interested. Just drop me a note mentioning that you would like to know more, and I will be glad to send it to you.

While it was difficult being apart, Rachelle and the girls enjoyed some extra time with her mother and "Grandma Martha" respectively. Perhaps the most memorable moment for me was arriving in Indianapolis. Rachelle was to have made arrangements for one of the guys in the ministry to pick me up at the airport (since it was nearly midnight.) I called her to be sure that she had talked to someone, and while I was still on the phone with her, I rounded the last corner and saw them. She and the three girls had come to the airport to welcome me home! I couldn't believe it! It was a wonderful experience, and it was so good to be home.

We have a missions team in our home right now from Kansas, and we are getting ready for our next trip that will include Cincinnati and the City Summit as well as a missions convention in Virginia. Thank you for your support and prayers. Without friends like you standing behind us and together with us, we could never do all that we do. While our lives are busy, we are managing to take time to stop and smell a few roses.

Yesterday, I was reminded again why we are here. "Can I speak to someone here at the church?" said a very tired-looking, middle-aged white lady with a 4 year old little boy.

" Sure!" I said, "Come on in and we'll talk."

She began pouring out the story before we could even sit down. "See I'm homeless right now. For the last two nights we have been out on the street. All of the shelters are full, and I can't get anybody to help me, and I don't know what to do." As we talked through her story, I hurt for her. She was fleeing a violent, abusive situation in Michigan, took a bus to Indy to meet her aunt who never showed up. After spending a month in the Julian Center, she decided to try other options. She left the shelter and lost her place in the long line of women and children waiting for help here in Indianapolis. With all the shelters full, she had been out on the streets for the last two nights with her four year old son.

"What we have here are relationships," I told Donna.* "The fact that we are having this conversation tells me that you don't have those kind of relationships."

"You're right. I don't," she admitted.

"I want you to know if that is what you are looking for, then you've come to the right place," I said with a smile, "Welcome home."

Her tired face broke into a big smile that said it all.

She spent the day with us. We ate together, talked together, and introduced her to our friends at the Care Center. While we don't know much about Donna yet, we committed to walking down the road with her. We are calling her and the many others like her that God leads into our path into real relationships.

"As much as you've done it unto the least of these my brethren, you've done it unto me," Jesus said. When we welcome Donna, we welcome Him. When we walk down the road with her, we are walking down the road with Him.

Why are we here? We are here because He is here. We're walking with Him.


We are back from sabbatical much refreshed and inspired. God taught us many lessons during this past month. The decision to get away was one of the best decisions that I have ever made, and I thank God for the help that He has given us. The good news is that everything went right on without us. Bro. Gibson did a wonderful job pastoring at Victory Chapel.

One of the lessons that we learned while away is that we are not indispensable. While the work that we do is important, the work is not about us. It is all about Him. We may be used to do God's work, but that is separate from who we are. I am not just what I do. My function within the church might be as a pastor, but my primary identity is member. While I have functioned as pastor at Victory Chapel for nearly the past six years, the time has come for me to step aside as pastor so that the work of God here can grow. The Board confirmed Dr. Stephen Gibson as the next pastor of Victory Chapel. While I am remaining here in Indianapolis, my role within the ministry is changing. I am going to be freed up to develop the ministry as a whole. My gifts as a communicator are needed to tell the story and to develop the work of Victory Inner-city Ministries. If that is what is needed, then that is what I am willing to do, and the great thing is that I am really excited about it!

When I think not only about the tremendous opportunities in the cities across our nation, I am both challenged and saddened. With the increasing trend of urbanization, our cities should be teeming with churches that are making an impact for the Kingdom. Instead, the silence is deafening. The rebellion against God that is so evident in our cities offers a golden opportunity for us to demonstrate the reconciliation of God in Christ to a watching world. But what are we bringing to the table? Too often, the answer is nothing or at least far too little. The time has come for us to get serious about reaching urban places with the Gospel.

We are planning a one-day City Summit Friday, November 2, 2007 on the campus of God's Bible School and College in Cincinnati, OH to begin a discussion and to think strategically about our urban places. We hope that you can join us for this event. If you are interested in city ministry or are involved in city ministry, you will want to plan to attend. While we will not solve all of the problems in one day, our goal is to start a discussion regarding urban ministry in the USA that will continue for years to come. Will you join us?

The City Summit is free and open to everyone. To register or for more information, contact us:

    Victory Inner-city Ministries, Inc.
    P.O. Box 11151
    Indianapolis, IN 46201
    (317) 506-3373

Preliminary Schedule of Events
9:00-9:45 A Historical perspective: Why city ministry (and ministry to the urban poor in particular) is so important to our theological heritage.

9:45-10:30 Discussion

10:30-11:15 A Current Perspective: What is currently being done in urban ministry within our movement? What are the most pressing opportunities available?

11:15-12:00 Discussion

12:00-1:30 Lunch

1:30-2:15 A Visionary Perspective: What could be? What might the future of urban ministry and evangelism here in the USA look like?

2:15-3:00 Discussion

3:00-3:45 A Strategic Perspective: What are the next steps? Where do we go from here? What can we begin to do together to reach our cities with the Gospel?

3:45-4:30 Discussion

4:30-6:00 Dinner

7:00 City Summit Rally


Copyright © 2007 Victory Inner-City Ministries, Inc.
Victory Chapel Hispanic Ministry Victory Acres Victory Village Shoppe Reconciled Quartet The Stranger Project