Central Christian Church has been a part of Pocatello’s history for over 100 years! The church was founded in 1915 in part as a response to the rejection of a young man who asked to be baptized by another church. The very next Sunday a small group of people met with the young man for the first service of what would become the Central Christian Church.
We are part of the moderate mainline denomination known as the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ). The Christian Church is part of one of the oldest and largest North American Christian movements. This movement was organized around the principal that Christians should be united not divided.
In 1916 a small building, twenty-five feet by fifty feet, was erected in the 300 block of North Hayes. Three years later, in 1919, the building was moved to land that had been purchased at 6th and Lander.
During the ministry of Charles D. Stout (1927-1932), three lots were purchased at what became Central Christian’s permanent home at 8th and Center. Building on this land began in April of 1939. Started as an act of faith, and through great financial sacrifices by the members, the construction was carried to completion while Pocatello was still suffering from the Great Depression.
On March 24, 1940, the church some 350 people strong marched from the old site to the new building. We still worship in part of the sanctuary that was dedicated that day.
In 1955, with the rapid growth of the baby boomer generation, Pastor Jasper Havens led this congregation in launching a new building program to address the issue of overcrowding. On May 4, 1958, a three stage building renovation and expansion program was completed and dedication services were held.
In 1990 under the Interim Leadership of John Nesby, the church celebrated its 75th Anniversary.
In 1998 a renovation program was initiated that would help to reconfigure the sanctuary and to create more off street parking. The renovation was completed 1999.
In 2005 90th Anniversary was celebrated. On April 19, 2015 we celebrated 100 years of faithful service in our community. But it was and is also a celebration of faithful service that extends into our community and our world. This church has always been a church that reaches out to bring people together whether it be through actively engaging in local interfaith activities and projects or in joining with others to provide avenues of hope to people on this continent or beyond.
For over 100 years this church has been serving Christ, it has been served by twenty different pastors. One of the most enduring ministries was that of J. Russell Houston. The church is currently pastored by Roger Bray who was raised in this church sent forth into ministry and then returned to minister with us and to us.
As we continue to follow Christ and provide ministry and service in his name and by His authority, we know that we are following our God who holds the future and empowers us to continue serving and witnessing as have the countless people who for a century, through faith and love provided a collective witness from our doorsteps to the ends of the earth.