The Nehemiah Network
The Nehemiah Network is a relational network of pastors and Christian marketplace leaders unite and strengthen the church in Central Arkansas through united prayer, strengthening leaders, and mobilizing the church to serve the community. To become a flourishing community there must be a unity of strong churches, and those churches must have strong leaders.
Growing out of a catalytic Prayer Summit in January 1998 with thirty-one pastors, representing diverse backgrounds and denominational traditions, the Network has not only sustained that prayer movement but has united churches in numerous initiatives to benefit our community.
In 1999, more than 100 churches united together for a weekend of service in our community know ShareFest. During the next 10 years, ShareFest not only visibly demonstrated the love of Christ in Central Arkansas, it inspired similar events in more than 50 U.S. cities and 3 foreign countries. During that same time period, the Nehemiah Group hosted a prayer summit annually, conducted two major research initiatives on community needs, “The Nehemiah Project” and the “Arkansas Marriage Study”, encouraged numerous church-school partnerships, and was a catalyst in city-wide initiatives including foster care and literacy.
In 2009, the Nehemiah Group joined with an even broader number of churches and community leaders to invite the Luis Palau Evangelistic Association to Central Arkansas for a city-wide festival. An estimated 55,000 people attended CityFest 2009 at the North Little Rock Riverfront. The two-day festival was the culmination of a “Season of Service” that began in July prior to the event. During this time, roughly 8,500 volunteers were involved in over 175 projects for the betterment of the community.
In the last six years, while continuing its foundation of prayer, the Network has helped launch AR Kids Read which provides more than 400 tutors a year in the three Central Arkansas School Districts, launched the Antioch Initiative that is providing seminary level church-based theological education for pastors, the Central Arkansas Marriage Initiative (CAMI) and a major initiative to provided community leadership in the area of racial reconciliation.