History

In October of 2003, a group of seven ladies from North Side Christian Church in Terre Haute, IN, attended a Heritage Keepers Conference near Indianapolis, Indiana. Among others who spoke, sang and witnessed at this event was Christian Comedienne and Songwriter, Anita Renfroe, of Atlanta, Georgia. The ladies who attended were not aware of her ministry, but they were touched by her candid, "get real" and all too hilarious presentation. On the way home, the ladies talked about how wonderful and uplifting the day had been and how it would be great to bring this same type of event to the Wabash Valley.

After much prayer and discussion with their Elders, the First Annual Wabash Valley Ladies Unity Night (WVLUN) was launched into the planning stages. The Pastor of North Side Christian Church met with other Pastors in the Community seeking support, and with a budget of approximately $3500 set for the event, this small church averaging 90 in attendance had a decision to make…how would this event be funded? With God in control, they stepped out in faith, determined to offer this event to every lady in the Wabash Valley, charging no admission fee so that all would have an opportunity to attend. Area churches and businesses were contacted and asked to contribute $100 to help defray costs. God would handle the rest, and it was decided that a love offering would be taken the night of the event to make up any difference. Pastor Mark Fleschner, of First Church of the Nazarene, graciously offered their church building – seating 500 – to hold the event since North Side’s building was too small.

Shortly after the planning was in full swing (January 2004), one of North Side’s Sisters In Service (SIS) who was very instrumental in planning the event, suffered a major heart attack unexpectedly. JoAnne Edwards lived her life openly for Christ…she had begun telling everyone who came through her checkout line at Sam’s Club about the event, taking down names and addresses so they could be sent information. The night before she unexpectedly went to be with the Lord, the WVLUN Planning Team met together, continuing to plan the event, and praying for God to bless the ladies of the Wabash Valley. At the next team meeting, all the ladies agreed that they would like to dedicate the First Annual WVLUN to the memory of JoAnne Edwards.

A few weeks later, SIS held an “Event Sneak Preview” at North Side Christian Church so that representatives from area churches would know the goal of the event…unity among Christian sisters.

Three weeks after ticket distribution began in January, it became clear the event had outgrown First Church of the Nazarene. Seeing our need, Pastor Keith Taylor of First Assembly of God (now Cross Tabernacle) offered his building for the event. Within ten days, seating capacity in the sanctuary was reached, and plans for a simulcast location on the church property began. Within 36 hours, all tickets for the simulcast area had been issued. Excitement filled the air, along with sadness at the realization that ticket distribution would cease because seating capacity had been reached…for the third time!

On March 12, 2004, the First Annual Wabash Valley Ladies Unity Night came to fruition when over 1100 women gathered together to praise and worship our Lord Jesus Christ, giving testimony to the Wabash Valley that Christians could indeed let down their denominational barriers for the sake of unity; Christ’s final words on the cross. God provided all funds needed to cover all expenses.

Seeing the need for an even larger facility for the second event, Pastor Vince McFarland of Maryland Community Church, offered his building which would seat slightly over 1900 women. Shortly after the planning of this second event began, a precious sister in Christ and planning team member, was called home to be with the Lord. The 2005 Planning Team then decided to dedicate this second event to the memory of Pat Taylor; a wonderful, sincere, loving Christian sister. Once again, an “Event Sneak Preview” was held in January of 2005 at Maryland Community Church, where representatives from churches would pick up promotional materials and tickets to help promote the event within their respective congregations. The 2005 Planning Team still felt that God was calling them to continue offering a “free”event, so that women from all walks of life could participate. With a budget of approximately $4500, once again these women stepped out in faith and relied on God to meet their financial needs.

On April 15, 2005, the Second Annual Wabash Valley Ladies Unity Night came to fruition when over 1700 women gathered together to praise and worship our Lord Jesus Christ, once again, giving testimony to the Wabash Valley. Liz Curtis Higgs, author of “Bad Girls of the Bible”, was the featured guest. Again, our great God provided all funds needed to cover all expenses, with some left over. It was then decided that 10% of all financial contributions received (before expenses) would be sowed into other Wabash Valley ministries. We indeed serve an awesome and powerful God!

Later that year in September 2005, plans began for the 2006 event. God immediately began opening doors so that the event could be held at the ISU Hulman Center on the campus of Indiana State University in Terre Haute, IN. A “theatre wedge” of the arena, seating approximately 2500 women, would certainly be large enough to host the third event. God was speaking again to the Planning Team to trust in Him and keep the event “free”, so that He could provide. The third “Event Sneak Preview” was held in January of 2006 at North Side Christian Church, so that representatives could once again receive tickets and promotional items. Within a month after ticket distribution began, it became apparent that more seats were needed. Intense prayer and petition began in asking God to open doors, if indeed He wanted the team to offer more seating. Events began to happen that spoke to the team, that He was leading them in the direction to offer more seats. This would constitute a larger budget, but again this team is trusting in God to provide the necessary funds. He has not let them down yet; He won’t start now!

The Third Annual Wabash Valley Ladies Unity Night was held at the ISU Hulman Center in Terre Haute, IN featuring once again, Anita Renfroe, on March 17, 2006 at 7:00 p.m. Once again, our God reigned! Approximately 5000 women were in attendance and all expenses were paid. Likewise, 10% of the gross monies collected were sowed into 4 commuity ministries, leaving a balance to start the 2007 planning.

The Fourth Annual Wabash Valley Ladies Unity Night was held at the ISU Hulman Center on March 30, 2007, at 7:00 p.m., featuring Christian Comedienne Chonda Pierce and The Whisnand Family Ministries leading Praise and Worship. Approximately 6000 women were in attendance, and again, all expenses were paid to host this $30,000 event, with monies to start the 2008 planning! Give God glory!!! Likewise, as in the last two years, 10% of ALL gross contributions were sowed into other community ministries. The 2008 Wabash Valley Ladies Unity Night is scheduled for April 4, 2008, at the ISU Hulman Center, featuring most requested guest, Anita Renfroe.

The Fifth Annual Wabash Valley Ladies Unity Night was held at the ISU Hulman Center on April 4, 2008, at 7:00 p.m., featuring Christian Comedienne Anita Renfroe.  Praise and Worship was led by the Praise Team of First Christian Church in Marshall, IL.  Approximately 6000 women were in attendance.  Again, our God provided the necessary funds to host this event, costing nearly $40,000. 

The Sixth Annual Wabash Valley Ladies Unity Night was held at the ISU Hulman Center on May 15, 2009 at 7:00 p.m., featuring Proverbs 31 co-founder and president Lysa TerKeurst.  Our Praise and Worship was led by the Wabash Valley Ladies Unity Night Praise team. The praise team is led by Melissa Milbourne.  This is the first year for the all female band from various area churches. 

The Seventh Annual Wabash Valley Ladies Unity Night was the first to be  a two day event on April 16, 2010 at 7:00 and April 17, 2010 at 2:00p, at Maryland Community Church in Terre Haute featuring Lisa Whelchel.  The Wabash Valley Ladies Unity Night Praise team with Melissa Milbourne again lead the Praise and Worship.

The Eighth Annual Wabash Valley Ladies Unity Night was held at Maryland Community Church in Terre Haute on March 25, 2011  at 7:00 and March 26, 2012 at 2:00 featuring Patsy Clairmont.  The Wabash Valley Ladies Unity Night Praise team with Melissa Mibourne again lead the Praise and Worship.

The Ninth Annual Wabash Valley Ladies Unity Night was held at Maryland Community Church in Terre Haute on March 9, 2012 at 7:00 and March 10, 2012 at 2:00 featuring Shelia Walsh. The Wabash Valley Ladies Unity Night Praise team again lead our Praise and Worship.

The Tenth Annual Wabash Valley Ladies Unity Night was held at Maryland Community Church in Terre Haute on May 3, 2013 at 7:00 and May 4, 2013 at 11:00 featuring Lisa Harper. The Wabash Valley Ladies Unity Night Praise team again lead our Praise and Worship.

The Eleventh Annual Wabash Valley Ladies Unity Night was held at Maryland Community Church in Terre Haute on March 28, 2014 at 7:00 and March 29, 2014 at 11:00 featuring Lisa Kathy Troccoli.

The Twelfth Annual Wabash Valley Ladies Unity Night was held at Maryland Community Church in Terre Haute on April 24, 2015 at 7:00 and April 25, 2015 at 11:00 featuring Lisa Tammy Trent.

The Thirteenth Annual Wabash Valley Ladies Unity Night was held at Maryland Community Church in Terre Haute on April 29, 2016 at 7:00 and April 30, 2016 at 11:00 featuring Anita Renfroe.

The Fourteenth Annual Wabash Valley Ladies Unity Night will be held at Maryland Community Church in Terre Haute on March 31, 2017 at 7:00 and April 1, 2017 at 11:00 featuring Lisa Bevere.

Realizing the presence of God during the unity of these events, a few women from the planning team(s) have been inspired to pursue Wabash Valley Ladies Unity Vision; a quarterly fellowship and community outreach gathering, open to all area Christian women. The following community ministries have been supported by WVLUV:

  • 2006 / 2007 - 14th & Chestnut Center
  • 2007 / 2008 - Crossroads Connection (formerly Gary's Place)
  • 2008 / 2009 - Families by Choice (Deborah's House)
  • 2010 / 2011 - Salvation Army

Click here to see pictures of this community outreach in action.

These ladies ask for your prayers, as God continues to unfold His desires for them. If you would like to be a part of this wonderful, God-breathed ministry, please contact us at info@wvluv.org or by phone at 812-460-0230.

North Side Christian Church SIS Group and the planning teams for all events wish to take this opportunity to give God ALL the glory for the success each year. Our prayer from day one has been that WVLUN would continue to be an annual event and that all ladies would be blessed by uniting together in praise, worship, prayer and fellowship so that the Wabash Valley would see that Christians are…

"United in Christ...Eternally One"


For more information, please email us at info@wvluv.org.