EAST NORTHPORT, N.Y.
- March 26, 2013
-- In 2011, the Pastors and congregation of the Northport Baptist Church
voted to change the church’s name to Island Christian Church
. The change was made, due to the fact that there were now three campuses, making it a multi-site church. The campuses are in Northport (actually East Northport, at the corner of Elwood and Clay Pitts Roads); Holtsville, which meets at the Ramada Plaza Hotel by Exit 63 off the Long Island Expressway, and serving what is primarily the Sachem school district; and in the historic district of the Village of Port Jefferson, on East Main Street. But especially, the name more represents the fact that the church is made up of Long Islanders, serving Long Island. Indeed, its pastors know and understand what it takes to survive and thrive on this Island -- which isn’t always and easy place to do so.
Founded in 1945 as the Northport Baptist Fellowship
, its first meetings were held at 55 Main Street in Northport Village. After moving to larger locations within the village, it moved to its present location, at the corners of Elwood and Clay Pitts roads in 1964. In 1968, the church welcomed its new pastor, Lester Ayars and his wife Diane. Remarkably, Pastor Ayars continues to lead the church, 45 years after arriving. In the years following, his arrival, church growth made it necessary for two major expansions, the latest featuring new classrooms, offices and visitor center.
In 2010, the church opened its first satellite campus in Holtsville, holding services in what is now the Ramada Plaza Hotel. At the time of its launching, it was determined that great church services do not necessarily need to meet in traditional church buildings. Island Christian Church Holtsville, which meets in the hotel ballroom, has all the amenities of a well-appointed meeting space, yet during church services, feels like an intimate time of worship, with a strong sense of community.
But speaking of traditional church buildings, Island Christian Church, Port Jefferson is very much the quintessential, charming country church that one might see portrayed on a “Currier and Ives” postcard. Built in 1855, the former First Baptist Church of Port Jefferson became an important part of life in the Village. As its numbers dwindled down to just a handful of congregants, Island Christian Church acquired the building in 2010, and the renovation of not just the structure, but also the ministry, began. Even to this day, it serves as the home base for the annual Dicken’s Festival in December. So after months of extensive renovation to modernize the building, while preserving its old-world charm, its doors opened on Palm Sunday, 2011 as Island Christian Church, Port Jefferson.
While church names change, its mission should never, which is to love and serve our Island with the Good News of Jesus Christ. As a Bible-believing church, Island Christian’s authority in all matters of faith and practice come from the Scriptures. Indeed, it is from living out the Scriptures where the church gets it values; including helping the hurting and the needy, and generally making a positive impact in our families, schools, workplaces and community.Island Christian Church
is a multi-campus, generational and cultural Bible-believing church -- a place where all can worship, fellowship, learn and serve.
Visit the website at www.IChristianC.org
or call 631-822-3000 for location directions and service times.