NINE (Northeast Indiana Neighborhood Engagement) is a new organization whose goal is to impact neighborhoods with community development, grassroots leadership, and the engagement of churches through Christ’s love.

Their mission is to bring transformational life change to individuals living in underserved neighborhoods in northeast Indiana. By bringing together churches and community leaders for strategic ministry opportunities, their focus is to connect new people to LCMS-Indiana District churches. They want to help them grow in their relationship with Christ so they can do the work of the Gospel.

NINE is led by Reverend Lewis A. King, who established King’s Barber Shop and Community Outreach, a ministry designed to spread the Gospel through bible studies and community engagement in Fort Wayne. King, who was formerly a barber before attending seminary, has extensive experience working with the “least of these” in Fort Wayne.

“As we connect people to people and people to Christ, we want to see transformational life change both for the individuals in these neighborhoods and the volunteers who join our grass roots leadership team,” Rev. King said.

The organization will partner with nine anchor churches in the area and work to invest in people by developing long-lasting relationships and providing financial resources for low-income neighborhoods.

They’ll do to this by encouraging congregations to be involved in service and leadership. Churches will work with their neighbors to develop partnerships that facilitate spiritual growth so that each person can reach their full potential in Christ.

Rev. King adds, “We want to work together to build effective partnerships knowing that we will accomplish more together than working alone.”

This story was originally published by the Indiana District – LCMS.
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