This past weekend seemed dreary and quiet throughout parts of Germantown. A slow stroll up Germantown Avenue changed all of that when singing, clapping and preaching were heard in the distance. Impacting Your World Christian Center (IYWCC), located at 5507 Germantown Ave., was where numerous local residents came together to listen to the word of God and to find a message of hope. Church members’ faces glistened from ear to ear, friendly faces were seen in every direction and uplifting messages were being preached in the welcoming atmosphere.
IYWCC has been around for 17 years and was founded by a Temple graduate, Pastor Ray Barnard. What started as 11 people inside Ray’s home has grown tremendously over the years with many passionate members. “This is church, this is not religion. I love this church and I wouldn’t trade it for anything else,” said Andrea Cherry, as tears began to build. The Germantown resident and parishioner for years claimed she was nobody before she found this church.
The mission is simple. “We’re here to help people and allow them to understand principals regarding God’s plan for life. God is not concerned about the past and here we preach a message of hope,” Ray explained.
Members congregated outside in the chilly weather as the service came to an end. “This is a fantastic church. I’ve learned how to walk in the word of God. I have no debt because I’ve followed the word, so many blessings,” Minister Dorris Fletcher said.
In addition to the Sunday church services, Ray spoke about the wide range of classes available to members and to the general public. The classes range from financial management to having a successful marriage. IYWCC has programs for children, youth and senior citizens while providing a basic foundation on how to make wise decisions about career and development.