History of the Southside Congregation:
As the 1950s ended the Main Street Church of Christ in Shelbyville, Tennessee found itself landlocked and in need of relocating. The vision of the Elders of that congregation was to plant two congregations in Shelbyville, one north of the Duck River, the other south of the river. In May of 1961, the building south of the river was complete. About 150 members of Main Street agreed to meet there. On opening Sunday, Willard Collins brought the message. In 1973, another building was completed north of the river and the name of that congregation was called Fairlane.
The Southside congregation has been an evolving congregation since. In its first years, the family of Southside shared the preacher with the Main Street congregation. Since about 1964 Southside has supported its own preacher, had its own eldership, and supported many good works. In 1969, an annex was added providing more classrooms and fellowship space. Since 2000 the congregation purchased the adjoining land and house creating a larger campus with one building dedicated as the “fellowship house”. In 2014, Southside entered a three-phase building improvement project to better serve our growing family. The annex was improved, the fellowship house remodeled to better fit our needs, and the auditorium was redecorated with new bathrooms, a larger foyer, and new seating.
The story of Southside is better seen through our people. We desire only to be a group of Christians deeply planted in God’s word, loving each other, encouraging each other, welcoming all who come our way. Our church family is balanced between old and young. We currently have a full-time minister who proclaims the Gospel and encourages the fainthearted. We have a part-time youth minister who oversees and promotes activities that grow faith in our young people. Our seniors are well respected and one deacon has the sole purpose of seeing to their needs. “Balance” might be the best word to describe our fellowship. The young find an atmosphere filled with Bible teaching and love, parents say it is a good place of Christian fellowship in which to raise children, seniors know they will not be forgotten as their active lives become less active.
To be in and around our assemblies is to witness the good spirit of the Southside church family. Visitors to our assemblies comment on this the most. It is not a depressing atmosphere of gloom and doom. It is a sometimes noisy gathering with Christians and seekers greeting each other. There is joy at Southside. The joy that Christ has redeemed us through the Cross. The joy that we have the opportunity to encourage one another in the faith.
Our future is bright. As a church family in a society that is becoming more and more godless, we realize the value of being a congregation where God’s word is taught and practiced. A huge part of that practice is experiencing the joy of fellowship when we come together. It is the intent of our five Elders and six Deacons to always be a refuge for those wishing to serve in God’s kingdom, and grow their faith, and go to heaven when they die.
We wish only to be what the Bible says we are, to have what the Bible says we have, to glorify God and his son Jesus Christ along the way. This has been true since 1961. It is true today more than ever before!
It is good to be at Southside!!!