Back Bay Christian Assembly turning 30 in Virginia Beach’s south

BY JOHN-HENRY DOUCETTE BACK BAY — In the city’s south, where a number of churches stretch back hundreds of years, Back Bay Christian Assembly is something of a new kid on the rural block. This year is the 30th anniversary for… Continue Reading


New to Virginia Beach, a preacher looks for — and finds — jazz

BY JOHN-HENRY DOUCETTE NORFOLK — Scott Simpson, a new arrival to Virginia Beach, recently settled his family into Regent Village before he begins his doctoral studies in church history at the university that gave its name to the neighborhood. And Simpson,… Continue Reading


New pastor at Charity UMC in Virginia Beach answered early call to ministry

BY JOHN-HENRY DOUCETTE PUNGO — The Rev. David Ryu, the new senior pastor at Charity United Methodist Church, was born in Seoul, South Korea, and raised in Toronto after his parents moved there to give their children better opportunities. He received… Continue Reading


Young members of Tabernacle United Methodist Church play key role in Lotus Luncheon tradition

THE INDEPENDENT NEWS SIGMA — Young members of Tabernacle United Methodist Church helped out last month during the 61st Annual Lotus Luncheon, which helps support the church on Sandbridge Road. “Young people are working, and they’re also supporting older members of… Continue Reading


Celebrating 100 years for Melva Riggs at Tabernacle UMC in Virginia Beach

THE INDEPENDENT NEWS SIGMA — Melva Riggs, born on Muddy Creek Road and a longtime resident of Sandbridge Road, turned 100 this past month, and extended family and friends gathered to celebrate her life a few days beforehand at Tabernacle United… Continue Reading


Column: On writing and a new volume in the Pungo Tales series

BY WALT WHITEHURST PUNGO — In life one thing leads to another. In the latter years of my life, my wife Betty and I worked with individual volunteer missionaries through the United Methodist Church. During those nine and a half years… Continue Reading


A new chapter begins for historic Little Piney Grove Baptist Church

BY JOHN-HENRY DOUCETTE CREEDS — Decorative icing on a cake at Little Piney Grove Baptist Church this past month quoted Jeremiah on a special day for the historic church: “And I will give you pastors according to My own heart who will… Continue Reading


A celebration of service, rededication to the work of Little Piney Grove Baptist

THE INDEPENDENT NEWS CREEDS — On Sunday, Jan. 17, a special service for the installation of church officers and leaders was held at historic Little Piney Grove Baptist Church in Creeds. The Rev. Hubert Wilson Jr. of New Greater Mt. Sinai Church… Continue Reading


Faith: Mission journey finds partnerships, friendships in Chilean communities

Ed. note – The Independent News welcomes reflections on spiritual matters from all faiths. The following is a portion of a mission report submitted by the Rev. Walter Whitehurst following a mission trip to Carahue, Chile, in October. It has… Continue Reading


In Pungo, volunteers glean collards for the hungry

THE INDEPENDENT NEWS PUNGO — Volunteers from a number of Hampton Roads churches cut collards to help the needy this past month in a harvest called gleaning that is being encouraged in Virginia to fight hunger. The Apostle Sharon Wallace… Continue Reading