Mission Indy was born out of Chapel Rock Christian Church in 1996, with a desire to help teens take the skills and motivations learned and developed on both the foreign and domestic mission fields and put them into action at home, in their own cities. The goal was to help students see the mission of God as a lifestyle rather than a trip.
The first year, (Summer) 1997, over 200 youth and adults from 20 different churches came to reach out to the inner city of Indianapolis. From 1998 to 2000, the numbers grew to 300 youth and adults from 25 churches. Mission Indy did not have a goal to start anything new, but simply wanted to partner with existing churches and ministries in the city.
After the summer of 1999, Ron & Marsha Greiner along with the original founding members of Mission Indy, sensed God's leading to take the ministry to a different level. Several people prayed with them about what God was doing and how He would direct the future. The first years included only one week of group participation, but by 2000, it was seen that the number of weeks needed to be expanded.
After much prayer and many talks, a core group of people moved to incorporate Mission Indy in October of 2000. A board of directors was put together and Mission Indy received non profit status in 2001. Ron Greiner was named the Executive Director, and became full time in March of 2001. As a 501 (c) 3, Mission Indy began to be supported by several churches and individuals. In 2001 Mission Indy offered three weeks of the Summer Program, and by 2004 increased that to four weeks.
In 2003, two major changes happened. First, Niccole Wilkes joined the staff of Mission Indy as the Director of Training. Second, college students began to be hired to serve as summer interns to assist with the summer program. In addition to the summer program, groups also came into the city to serve with Mission Indy on selected Saturdays during the year. Because our mission is about equipping and not simply service, more strategic training elements were added and close attention was paid to ensure all elements of the programs pointed towards equipping. Niccole left to work with Parent Life a program of Youth for Christ.
In 2010, Matt Cutler joined the staff of Mission Indy as the Director of Operations, in order to further increase the capacity to do things such as weekend retreats and designed opportunities. In 2013 Ryan Steuer joined the staff as the Director of Mission Development. In 2017, Nathanael Kelly began to lead Mission Indy's IFI Fellowship. Both Ryan and Nathanael since moved on.
Mission Indy continues to grow its partnerships throughout the greater Indianapolis area. We are thankful to God for many years of serving churches and we are excited to see where the Lord takes the ministry in the future.
If you would like to see more about Mission Indy's story and heart, see the video below.