|Central Congregational Church|
|Central Congl Church is at top right in this satellite photo. Image from Aug. 31, 2005, from NOAA|
On September 8, 2005, the Connecticut Conference's Board of Directors voted to enter a partnership with the Central Congregational Church United Church of Christ of New Orleans, Louisiana, one of nine UCC churches directly affected by the landfall of Hurricane Katrina. The church's pastor, the Rev. Wilmer Brown, and its members had been forced to evacuate by the rising waters pouring through breached levees.
Central Congregational Church was founded in 1872 by the American Missionary Association. The church's mission statement, proudly displayed on its web site, proclaims:
Our mission is to worship God, to proclaim the gospel of Jesus Christ, to celebrate the sacraments, to render loving service toward humankind, and to strive for righteousness, justice, and peace.
The site goes on to say:
We have a multi-faceted ministry which includes summer tutoring programs, distribution of commodities, the Good Gang (Boy Scout Troop), Back Bay Mission support, Lenten and Advent retreats, health screenings, CCIA, and many other efforts.
All are welcome - our doors and our hearts are always open.
Among the church's ministries has been a concerted effort to improve the health of the community. In 2004, Wilmer and Hulen Brown underwent AIDS tests during worship to demonstrate the importance of that step. Click here for the Times-Picayune story. 15 other churches participated in a week-long series of health fairs as part of the effort.
The Board voted to:
Board members personally contributed to replace Rev. Brown's preaching gowns, lost to the flood waters.