Our History

In 1954, Brother and Sister John Lundy began worshipping in their home at 718 Phelps Street on the Eastside of Jacksonville, Florida. After a while, there became the need for a larger meeting place. With the approval of the Eastside Congregation of which Brother and Sister Lundy were former members and the help of the Westside and Lincolnville Congregations, a building was purchased on Odessa Street on the Eastside of Jacksonville. Brother John Lundy served as minister of the Odessa Street Church of Christ until his health began to fail 1965. Under his leadership, the congregation continued to grow. 

When Brother Lundy could no longer fulfill all of his duties as minister, Brother Alfred Hooker was asked to come and assist Brother Lundy in the work of the Church. In December 1966, Brother Hooker was selected as minister of the congregation. Under his leadership, the congregation outgrew the building on Odessa Street and there was a need for another building. With the help of Brother Graham McGhee of San Jose Church of Christ, along with the membership, the congregation was able to purchase a building on the Northwest side of Jacksonville at 26th and Almeda Street. The name was then changed to Northside Church of Christ. Brother Hooker served as minister until he resigned in May 1973. In June 1973, our present minister, Charlie McClendon, was asked to come and work as minister of the congregation. Under Brother McClendon’s dynamic leadership, the congregation grew perhaps faster than any other congregation in the area at that time. Within three years, the congregation grew from a membership of about 200 to about 800. There were four worship services held on Sunday; three in the morning and one in the evening. As a result of this tremendous growth, there was a need for a new meeting place.

​ In 1975, 6.3 acres of land was found at 4736 Avenue “B” (our present location), a few blocks north of the Almeda Street building. Plans then began formulating to build. It would have a seating capacity of 1300 with a few classrooms, a small multi-purpose Fellowship Hall with a kitchen and nursery. A bond program was started in the amount of $300,000 after the membership raised about $50,000. With this money, the building was built almost entirely by the sisters and brothers of the congregation along with friends from the community. In November 1977, the new building was completed at a cost of more than $350,000. Souls were still being added to the body which caused the need for more help in the ministry. Brother William Stephens was selected as Assistant Minister to Brother Charlie McClendon.

​ During the year 1978, a Day Care Center was started. The congregation continued to grow by the 100’s and by 1979 there was the need to reorganize the congregation to help with the abundant growth. A quorum of brothers was selected by the Church to work with Brother McClendon until men could become qualified for Elders and Deacons. In 1982 the first Deacons were selected and Brother William Stephens and his family moved to Durham, North Carolina to take on the new mission work that had started there. Brother Willie “Pete” Jackson was selected to come as Brother McClendon’s assistant and work as Education Director of the Bible School. The congregation continued to grow which allowed the ministries to grow. In 1982 the TV Ministry Program, “Let the Bible Speak,” aired and is still on air today.

Brother “Pete” Jackson left Northside Church of Christ in 1990 for the opportunity to become the minister of Westside Church of Christ and in 1991 Brother Michael McClendon was asked to come and work as Assistant Minister to Brother McClendon. In 1992, Elders and Deacons were ordained, appointed and another building program began. Construction started in the summer of 1995 and on Sunday, November 10, 1996 there was a dedication service for our new Church Complex. The complex consists of five buildings: (1) The Administrative Building, (2) The Education Building, (3) A newly renovated Sanctuary, which seats 1200 plus, (4) A newly renovated Fellowship Hall, with a ladies suite, nursery and toddler room, (5) A Community Family Life Center.

A non-profit organization was spearheaded by Brother Charlie McClendon in 1997. Northside Community Involvement, Inc. (NCI) was formed to help improvethe community by working with children and families with social problems. Under the umbrella of NCI is an after school tutorial program, neighborhood youth program, drug support group and several other programs. During 2001, God continued to bless Northside Church of Christ. The congregation opened a state-of-the-art Child Development Facility housed in the Family Life Center. It was called NCI Child Development Center and is operated under the umbrella of Northside Community Involvement, Inc.

​ The congregation continued to grow. By 2002 the Small Group Ministry had been established and was growing as well as the New Man Ministry. During this time Brother Michael McClendon resigned from his position as the Associate Minister and Brother Marcus Watkins was hired to work with the youth. Brother Nathaniel Stewart came to work as the Membership Minister. 2003 was a great year! The Youth Intervention Ministry for young boys was started as well as the Sister to Sister Mentoring Program for the young girls. Our attendance was up to about 900 per week. More members moved their membership from other congregations to Northside Church of Christ than any other time in the history of the congregation.

2004 is the year we planned for the 50th Anniversary and 27th Annual Homecoming activities. Brother Marcus Watkins and his family left to take on the work in Evansville, IN. The women reorganized their Ladies Bible Class and the New Man Ministry continued to grow. It was in this year that we took over the mission work in Palatka.

​ In 2005 the work in Palatka continued and Brother Michael Jackson and Brother Thornton Brown were asked to care for this mission work. Our Child Development began offering pre-k classes. The year 2006 is when we were able to do some upgrades such as visual art equipment and lights under the walkways. Unfortunately, this is also the year BrotherNate Stewart resigned from his position and left the ministry. 2007 started with a reception to welcome our new Assistant Minister and family, Brother Devins and Sister Natasha Jackson. The mission in Palatka is now being cared for by Brother Thornton Brown and Brother Robert Lewis. Brother Louis Jackson, Elder, is the overseer. Brother Michael Jackson accepted the opportunity to become the Minister of Miller Street Church of Christ in Orange Park, Florida. On September 9, 2007, we selected more Elders and Deacons to work along with the Ministries. During the years 2008-2009, the membership continuously grew. We annually celebrated our Annual Homecomings and Anniversaries and offered Gospel/Revival Meetings here and in Palatka. In August of 2009, Brother Devins Jackson resigned from his position. The year 2010 started off wonderfully. We added to our family Brother and Sister Douglas and Barbara Perry and their two children. Brother Perry will serve as our Intern Minister. They are working closely with NCI and the Youth Ministry and are a tremendous asset to this congregation. God has also blessed us to purchase about five acres of land across the street east and north of the building on Avenue “B”. It is our prayer that it will be used for building a village including a Senior Citizens Complex in the future. That vision is slowly coming into existence. On Friday, January 8, 2010 we broke ground for a Community Resource Center called the Bethesda House of Hope which will be the nucleus of the Village of Bethesda. Also, in the spring of 2010 a Community Garden was started. Currently the community resource center houses the office space for Families and Children Intervention (FCI) which is under the NCI umbrella and works to equip families to create a positive legacy for generations to come.

In 2011 we started the year off with our Annual New Year’s Program and Ministry Workshops. This year Brother Sam Garner became active the work in Palatka and membership began to grow. He and Brother Robert Lewis are doing a fine job there. The congregation hosted their first Ladies Day Program this year and it was well attended. This is also the year we began the 5th Sunday Palatka Fellowship Program. All of the congregations in the area who choose to join us travel to Palatka each 5th Sunday to show support and assist them in growth and strength. In March of this year we enjoyed the preaching of Brother Jack Evans, Sr. at our Let the Bible Speak Spring Gospel Meeting. Brother Bobby L. Green, Jr. joined us once again as speaker for our Harvester’s Gospel Meeting in September.

​ Our scheduled programs, gospel meetings, concerts and workshops went as planned and they were all well attended. NCI has gone through an organizational change and is continuing to strive and grow. They are planning a Winter Gala fundraising dinner to be held in December of this year. The NCI Community Outreach Garden is still an active fundraiser and is doing very well under the care of Brother and Sister Bernard and Bama Hales and those who work with them. We struggled somewhat this year with our Total Day Pledges but God is a provider and we will have a celebration of our 34th Annual Homecoming/57th Annual Anniversary as good as all the others. At the time of this writing, everything for Homecoming is secured. The guest speakers are all local ministers who are connected to the Northside Church of Christ history in one way or another which makes this a “true homecoming”. The speakers are Clarence Williams of US 1 Church of Christ, Richard Coffey, Sr. of Sweetwater Church of Christ, Joe Mack of Eastside Church of Christ, Mike Jackson of Miller Street Church of Christ and Pete Jackson of Westside Church of Christ. We are all excited about the arrival of the Gospel Songfest guest and can not wait to celebrate with them in concert.