The history of Eastside dates back to the summer of 1957 where many families were meeting in an old wood frame building at 308 N. Marshall Ave in Midwest City, then known as the Midwest City Church of Christ. With a growing economy in Oklahoma City, the close proximity of Tinker Air Force Base, and the Lord’s great blessing, the congregation experienced wondrous growth. The congregation started collecting contributions and was enabled to establish two new congregations in Del City and Midwest City from the original group of Saints. The original group became what is now Ridgecrest church of Christ. 15 families met together and made plans to procure 10 acres in the heart of Midwest City. They soon broke grounds for a new building which became the new meeting place for the Eastside Church of Christ at 916 S. Douglas Blvd. The first permanent structure was completed early in 1958. The first sermon in the new building was preached on the first Sunday of March 1958, with an attendance of 375 people.
Eastside Church of Christ rebuilt the current worship facility in 1980 after a fire broke out and destroyed the auditorium and a large part of first building. The new building, which is still in use today, expanded the auditorium which seats 1200 people and added many additional classroom facilities.
Over the last 60 years Eastside has had a rich heritage of preachers and missionaries preaching the gospel throughout the world, as well as maintaining a strong emphasis in serving the community of Midwest City.
Since the beginning, in 1957, Eastside has had eleven full time preachers serving Eastside including Harvey Scott, Wayne Anderson, Roy Lanier Jr., Johnny Ramsey, Harrell Davidson, Bill Banks, David Roper, Gary Grady, Boyd Williams, Dayton Keesee, and Dale Hartman. Eastside has also had many youth and family ministers including Gary Grady, Deek Benton, Luke Hartman and Clay Bryant.
Eastside has been blessed to participate in many mission campaigns through the years. These have included mission work in Austrailia, the Phillippines. Eastside has also cooperated in several cross-country campaigns to Virginia, New York, Chicago, Connecticut, Colorado, Wyoming, and overseas campaigns to England, Ireland and Russia.
Eastside continues to support numerous mission efforts throughout the globe, including Indonesia, Austrailia, Equador, Mexico and Guatemala. Eastside has had many men who have been actively involved in prison ministry in McAlester prisons, and several members who help in teaching the World Bible School ministry throughout the globe.
Eastside has been serving the Midwest City and surrounding community for many years, starting the Clothing-Give-Away ministry in 1993 which serves the community year-round, donating clothes each month, and spreading the gospel to the needy in the community. In 1995, following the Oklahoma City Murrah Building bombing, God opened a door to support the community in many new ways. The congregation became host to numerous donations from churches across the nation to support in the disaster relief effort. In May 1999, the Eastside church building became the Official Disaster Relief Facility following the tornado outbreaks which wrecked Norman, Moore, and Midwest City. Eastside took in donations from dozens of states to support in the relief dispersing nearly $100,000 in funds for the relief effort. Following a second outbreak in 2001, which included Moore, Midwest City, and Choctaw, the elders sought to develop a center which could be a dedicated facility to house disaster relief efforts and other benevolence activities as the need arises. In 2011, Eastside opened the Growth and Outreach Center, a new 100,000 sq ft facility behind the back of our current worship facility which houses the Clothing-Give-Away and supports a large, fully-functional kitchen and open area to house relief personnel in case of disaster. This new facility is instrumental in expanding Eastside’s outreach capability in the community.
End Notes from the author: To relate a history of the highlights of the work a church has been involved in fails to acknowledge the simple acts, that many members quietly do each day in service to the Lord. The old adage “an organization is only as good as the people of which it is made” applies to churches as well. The little acts that individual men and women do in their daily walk and the blessings they bestow on others are what make a difference and ultimately these are what strengthen influence of the church for the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Eastside’s history is full of these types of people who quietly, but profoundly touch the lives of others in their Christian walk. It has been little acts like this that have earned Eastside a nickname among many in the community as… “the church that helps people.” It is a title the members of Eastside strive to hold. Finally, none of these acts are were looking for praise from men, but it has all been in service for the Lord, simply doing what needed to be done. Eastside has had the wonderful pleasure to be a part of the Lord’s work for these past 60 years, touching lives and bringing people to the knowledge of Christ and what God has done for us.