City Church Greenfield to open Aug. 6


Jason Leadingham, pastor of City Church Greenfield, greets visitors at a July 22 block party.

GREENFIELD — Rachael Lindsay saw them in a booth at a Greenfield Parks and Recreation trunk or treat.

As she chatted with people from City Church Greenfield, “They were warm and welcoming,” she said. “You could just tell that they cared.”

As a result, Lindsay and her husband joined a team of people preparing to launch the new church. That launch is set for 10 a.m. Aug. 6 at 400 S. Noble St.

On July 22, the church played host to a back-to-school block party, grilling hamburgers and hotdogs, setting up a bouncehouse and games, and giving away snowcones.

There were also free backpacks containing school supplies. Debbie Barnhart and Lindsay greeted partygoers from behind a table filled with backpacks.

Barnhart said she had been looking for a church, and when her granddaughter told her about a college classmate helping launch one in Greenfield, she had a feeling “This is what I need to do.”

Among the people helping launching the church, there are several stories of how they came to be part of the team.

Pastor Jason Leadingham was serving a church in Florida, about an hour from his in-laws, but feeling called by God to move north. When he and his wife decided to break the news that the grandchildren might be moving away, the Leadinghams learned the grandparents were also feeling called north.

They began to talk about ministering together. Father-in-law John Croft called a friend who is a Wesleyan district superintendent in Indiana. The superintendent told Croft he’d call after a conference he was attending in Florida. Croft said his son-in-law was at the same conference right then, so the district leader looked up Leadingham.

The Wesleyan Church gave the City Church team a year of funding to prepare for a launch. It also gave a grant to repair and renovate a church building, life center and parsonage on Noble Street. Greenfield Wesleyan Church met there previously but closed in 2021, and the buildings had been vacant since then.

The incoming church, though also Wesleyan, is a different church and different group of people.

“We’re going to be highly intentional in reaching families with young children,” Leadingham said. “We want it to be a beacon of light in the neighborhood.”

The launch will happen in the Life Center. Leadingham said the plan is to later renovate the church building, starting with the basement.

Joshua Blake and his wife, Kirsten, stood near the Life Center at the block party handing out snowcones. They too have a story of how they came to the church. With college days winding down, they were praying about where the next chapter would unfold. Joshua had a dream: Black background. White letters. Spelling “Greenfield, Indiana.”

At the time, he didn’t know where that was. But he did research and noticed that Croft is associate pastor of City Church Greenfield. Blake knew that name because his parents and Croft had ministered together years ago in the Czech Republic.

Now, as the church’s worship pastor and young adults pastor, Blake has moved here with his wife, just minutes from the church.

They and others from the church spread out among the neighborhood a few weeks ago, sharing about 300 invitations to the block party. He estimates about 150 people, or about 50 percent, came — “a huge success,” he said.

With the Aug. 6 launch near, Kirsten Blake said there’s “an eagerness, an anticipation of what God’s going to do.

“… I’m excited for the launch, but also for what’s going to come after that.”