OUR STORY 

In 1956 there were no independent Christian Churches in Lakeland and that need was filled when Central Christian Church was begun in the home of Pastor Paul Ingram on Patterson Street. The church soon began to grow and more space was needed to house those who were attending. A residence at the corner of Bartow Road and Coolidge Avenue was purchased and it, along with the garage, was used for worship services. Because of the location, the name was changed to Grove Park Christian Church. Within the year, plans were developed to build the first unit facing Coolidge Avenue.

In 1962 a group of members left the church and formed another congregation which was named Lakeland Christian Church. After meeting in temporary facilities at Cleveland Court Elementary School an acre of land on Ariana Street was chosen and the group moved into their building in 1965.

Both congregations grew and prospered over the years. Grove Park went through several building programs and purchased neighboring property as well as Coolidge Avenue. Over the ensuing years, they built a sanctuary, razed it to erect a larger one and constructed several additions which culminated with a gymnasium and classroom addition. Lakeland Christian outgrew their facility on Ariana Street and purchased land on Beacon Road. Their building sold much faster than they anticipated and they met temporarily at Cleveland Court Elementary and the YMCA until the new building was finished in November, 2005.

The elders of both congregations began talks to reunite after 45 years of meeting at separate locations. The minister, Shane Hargrave, said in a town of this size it did not make sense to have two congregations less than four miles from each other. On September 23, 2007 both groups decided to merge into one; shortly thereafter a new name was chosen. The congregation is now called Legacy Christian Church and meets at the Beacon Road location.

Read the article in The Ledger for an account of our remarkable story, of how Grove Park Christian Church and Lakeland Christian Church reunited.