By Christie McNeal/NEMS Daily Journal
In 1958, St. Luke United Methodist Church held services at Rockwell Youth Center. When the congregation outgrew that facility, it moved into the Joyner School building until it built its current location on Clayton Avenue in 1961.
Dr. Rick Brooks, who has been pastor at St. Luke United Methodist Church for four years, said the church follows the Wesley/Methodist tradition of “embracing open hearts, open minds and open doors.” He said that basically involves being “inclusive and sharing the love of Christ with all.”
One of the church’s main outreach missions, the St. Luke food pantry, puts that idea of sharing to the test. Brooks said the pantry serves hundreds in Lee County every Thursday. A building was recently donated to the ministry, which allowed it to move from the church itself to the corner of Eason and Veterans boulevards. Lots of members are involved and do everything from greeting to stocking to assembling the food.
“It’s a pretty well-oiled machine,” Brooks said.
The church also seeks to be hospitable to all ages – children, youth and senior adults.
“We emphasize friendliness and welcoming people,” he said. “Everybody is welcome. There is a place for everyone here.”
While St. Luke welcomes others to join them in fellowship and worship, Brooks said the church “emphasizes spiritual formation” and strengthening those that are already members.
“Sunday school is very big here,” he said.
Brooks said if you were to ask a member, they would say “they feel like there is a sense of acceptance and camaraderie. That’s what we invite others to share.”
‘Come worship with us, and share in the love of Christ.’
Dr. Rick Brooks
• Denomination: United Methodist
• Pastor: Dr. Rick Brooks
• Established: 1958
• No. of members: 814
• Worship style: An early contemporary/blended
service and a later traditional service
• Worship days:
8:45 a.m. contemporary worship service
9:45 a.m. Sunday School
11 a.m. traditional worship service
5:30 p.m. Wednesday night meal
6:30 p.m. small group studies
• Address: 1400 Clayton Ave., Tupelo
• Website: www.stluketupelo.org
• Phone: (662) 842-6522