Heart of Ministry Planted
In the early 1970’s, by the leading of the Holy Spirit, Merrill and Jeannette McBride began a ministry called the House of Prayer. Meetings were hosted in their home for over two years before they began holding services on a farm in Lewisville, Indiana.
Birth of a New Ministry
House of Prayer was founded as a not-for-profit organization in 1974. The services were moved from the McBride’s home to a little red house on the farm where Merrill grew up. The tiny one-bedroom, red house was the “church”. The breakfast bar served for a pulpit, the bathtub for a baptismal and the bedroom was a prayer room, a nursery, and a place for someone to stay who needed help. In the early years the property surrounding the little red house was developed into a campground for the ministry, and several families moved homes onto the property. God moved mightily day after day and the ministry was born.
In 1976 construction began on the new church building nicknamed “The Barn”. It was constructed in place of the old one that was on the farm and was built to look like a barn. The new barn was significantly larger than the little red house, and God provided funding each step of the way as the ministry stepped out in faith. Many people could not understand the building of a new facility, but the Holy Spirit directed the steps. This was made evident in April of 1977 when the first service was held in the new, incomplete building and the congregation doubled in size.
The Indianapolis House of Prayer was started in the Howard Johnson motel in 1980. As it grew, the location was moved several times before a church was built on Rawles Avenue in 1983.
In the first ten years of House of Prayer the ministry launched many works. These included The Annual Indiana Camp Meeting, a television program, seminars, a residential counselee program, a book and tape ministry, and four other churches.
Amazing Youth Camp
In 1984 Harvest Ranch, now known as Harvest Christian Camp, was launched as a summer youth camp program. This program was run entirely by volunteers from churches in the community and students coming from places around the country such as Christ For the Nations, Rhema Bible College, Oral Roberts University, and more.
In 1995 God led Merrill McBride to retire from the position of pastor at House of Prayer. God had been preparing a new shepherd. He rose up a teacher and ministry worker, David Todd, to become the new leader of House of Prayer Ministries. The transition was completed at the 1995 New Year’s Eve service, and David became the pastor of House of Prayer on January 1, 1996.
Since 1996 Pastor David Todd has led House of Prayer Ministries into the 21st century. Improvements in church facilities, ministry outreach methods, and camp activity venues went from the use of the old print shop for ministry media to live streaming and social media. The horse ranch was changed over to the horse power of go-karts. The Barn got a face lift and new construction was done on the property. The Indy HoP was remodeled and an addition that nearly doubled the size of the building.
Big Changes Same Anointing
Though House of Prayer Ministries has been through many changes, the anointing of the Holy Spirit and the Word of God has not changed. House of Prayer was founded on operating in the anointing of the Holy Spirit and walking by the Word of God, and our motto continues to be: “Protect the anointing!”