LIMA — Claytonia Logan started a street church called Enough is Enough: Taking It to the Streets Ministries on the corner of Third and Main streets in Lima on June 29. Services will be held outside every other Sunday starting at 6 p.m.
What is a street church? Logan explained, “A street church is a church without four walls. It reaches those who would not otherwise be reached. It’s a church for people who would not come into a church building.”
Logan started her street church because she was tired of all the violence she saw. “The Lord spoke to me,” she said. “He told me to take the ministry out of the church and into the street, to give the city the message that until the division is stopped, the violence won’t stop. Believers need to be unified.”
The first service, which also included a concert by local singers including Royal Tribe and Tim Carter, saw over 100 people in attendance. Logan gave away free pop, water and popsicles.
Carla Dysert, who was one of the attendees at the first service, feels that what Logan is doing is unique. “She just noticed that these people were not coming into the church,” Dysert said. “So, Claytonia is bringing the church to them. I think it is an awesome idea because nobody is doing that.”
Logan hopes to reach people who would not ever step foot inside a church. “People who don’t even realize they need help,” she said, “they won’t ever come in. If they won’t come in, then we need to go out. That love we always talk about, we need to show it.”
Logan picked the location of Third and Main streets partly because of the violence that goes on in that area of town. “It’s a forgotten part of town in a lot of ways,” she said. “Really, though, this is where God told me to go. When He tells me to move, then I’ll move.”
Logan, who grew up in church and became a believer at the age of 13, is not unfamiliar with the lives of some of the people she hopes to reach. Addicted to crack cocaine for years, Logan did not come back to God until six years ago.
“I was called to preach when I was very young,” she said. “I got addicted to crack cocaine and spent years out on the street, but the Lord kept calling me. Finally, I was sitting on the floor of a crack house and I told God I would preach if he would take away the taste for crack.”
Logan bought more drugs but said she could not get high. “That’s when I said I would go where God wanted me to and say what he wanted me to say,” she said.
While Logan does not have a seminary degree, she spent most of the past six years being mentored by the Rev. Arnold Manley, pastor at Pilgrim’s Rest Missionary Baptist Church. This past May she opened her own church in Ada called Savior’s Grace Ministries which started with only two members but has grown to over 20.
While Logan wants to reach people outside of the church, one of her goals is also to encourage unity among believers who already attend church. “I hope God’s people will come together and pray,” she said. “And not just pray, but that they will meet the needs of the people. It’s not a white and black thing. The street has always been the street. The problem is not the guns. The problem is the division. We, meaning the church, won’t come together. We want to say it’s not our problem, but together, it is our problem. We are the problem. We won’t link together to get the job done.”
For Logan, the biggest challenge so far has been funding. “God always makes a way,” she said. “I don’t have a committee or sponsors. I have depleted my bank account, but God does make a way.”
Despite the challenges, Logan has found running a street church to be very rewarding. “I had a lady walk up to me afterward,” she said. “She said she didn’t know anything about Jesus, and she still didn’t know much, but she wanted to know him.”
While her street ministry is to reach those outside of the church, Logan also sees this as an opportunity for the church community as a whole.
“I hope we will come together and help the people in the street and show God’s love,” she said. “People don’t want to hear about God’s love and still be hungry. Faith without works is dead. We need action behind our faith.”
For Logan, showing her faith in action means doing what God is leading her to do. “It says in the Bible to go out in the highways and hedges and compel them,” she said, “so that is what I am doing.”
What: Enough is Enough: Taking it to the Streets Ministries
When: 6 p.m. July 27 with meetings every other Sunday afterwards
Where: Corner of Third and Main streets, Lima