This was to be a multi-cultural, multi-ethnic and socially diverse group: a unique fellowship of believers and community of faith, God charged one humble man, to raise up a work in Columbus, Ohio that would reach people and touch lives all around the world.
La Fayette did not hesitate to answer to God’s invitation to commitment. La Fayette placed only one condition on his promise of obedience. “Lord, if you will make your will perfectly clear to me, whatever you ask. I will do it.” He declared that the mission of this new work was ‘to equip the people of God for the work of the ministry’ as stated in Ephesians 4:11-16 and the foundation for all teaching and ministry.
Rhema Christian Center was birthed out of the mind of God, into the heart of Bishop La Fayette Scales.
La Fayette Scales gathered around him a core of charter members and Rhema Christian Center’s inaugural service was conducted on May 2, 1982, at 2173 S. James Road in Columbus, Ohio. Of the 30 people who attended, ten responded to the call for discipleship and membership. A year later, La Fayette was formally installed as its pastor. Within the first two years, growth in membership to over 200 necessitated a new worship center.
The young church became the proud owner of a new home with the purchase of the property at 2116 Agler Road in 1989 (formally owned by Christian Assembly). Membership quickly increased to 500 and three worship services became a necessity, in addition to the Sunday and Wednesday evening services.
Grounding in the Word
Rhema Christian Center’s early vision of ‘a community faith, love, and power, established upon the Word of God’ found great reception among those with ‘dry and parched’ lives thirsting for relevant biblical teaching.
The transformation of the ministry, from its rapid physical growth due to the teaching of God’s word with clarity, was further enhanced by the sharpening of the spiritual vision. Elders were installed and trained to listen to the voice of God in order to equip the people of God. Capable Deacons were appointed to the task of serving the body at Rhema Christian Center.