Growing Stronger By Reaching Out

Growing Stronger By Reaching Out

Historically, the town of Moyock, N.C., was a slow-moving, agricultural community where flat fields of corn, wheat, soybeans and cotton stretched beside the highway. In northwest Currituck County, some 8,000 people live in its zip code.

Moyock United Methodist Church, founded in the early 1800s, stands on a parcel of land only a mile from the Virginia border. At one point, the church was barely holding its own with some 44 families and an average Sunday attendance of about 65.

Serving the Community Directly

When the Rev. Victor Culberson was assigned to Moyock — his first church appointment — in 1999, he suggested that the church consider how it might serve the community more directly, to turn outward in its mission.

Through a demographic study and survey, the congregation determined that Moyock's population had grown by 35 percent in the 1990s and another 10 percent growth was expected. With more young families moving in, the demand for child care services was urgent.

"People told us they wanted a place where they could get good, local care for their kids — preschool, after school, and before school," explained one church member. "And they wanted more summer day care options." Some parents who worked in the Moyock area were actually driving their children 45 minutes to Norfolk, Va., for child care.

New Community Outreach Grows Congregation

Using a $100,000 grant for start-up costs from The Duke Endowment, Moyock United Methodist launched a before- and after-school program, a Christian preschool, and child development center.

Overnight, the church doubled the capacity for child care services in the town — and church attendance tripled. Through community outreach, Moyock United Methodist was reinvigorated.

Contact Us

Robert R. Webb III
Director of Rural Church


Related Work

Area of Work

  • Congregational outreach

Program Area

  • Rural Church

Areas of Work

  • Prevention and early intervention for at-risk children

    To equip children and families with skills to ensure that children reach developmental milestones to lead successful lives.

  • Out-of-home care for youth

    To drive child welfare systems toward greater accountability for child well-being.

  • Quality and safety of health care

    Improving the quality and safety of health care delivery

  • Access to health care

    Improving health by increasing access to comprehensive care

  • Prevention

    Expanding programs to promote health and prevent disease

  • Academic excellence

    Enhancing academic excellence through program and campus development

  • Educational access and success

    Increasing educational access and supporting a learning environment that promotes achievement

  • Campus and community engagement

    Promoting a culture of service, collaboration and engagement among schools and communities

  • Rural church development

    Building the infrastructure and capacity of United Methodist churches to enhance ministry and mission

  • Clergy leadership

    Strengthening United Methodist churches by improving the quality and effectiveness of church leadership

  • Congregational outreach

    Engaging United Methodist congregations in programs that serve their communities

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