SANFORD – The New Life Word Center Church, located at 1311 S. Oak Ave., Sanford, FL, will be celebrating 40 years of ministry and is a ministry of EXCELLENCE that saves, heals, and delivers people with the love of God, using every available means, which is New Life Word Center’s Mission Statement.
We are celebrating the legacy of Dr. R.W. Merthie, founder of New Life Word Center Church. Dr. Merthie was born Ronald Wayne Merthie on January 20, 1951, and was the 6th of 8 children. He was born to Lillie Bell and Oscar E. Merthie. He attended and graduated from Crooms High School in 1968. He was in leadership, even in high school, and was class president. Dr. Merthie graduated from college in 1973 from Texas Southern University, Houston, Texas. He received numerous awards there while in college. He began a teaching career in Seminole County and later became an Assistant Principal.
Dr. Merthie gave his life to the Lord and was born again and made Jesus Christ his Lord on February 14, 1975. Under the mentorship of Apostle Fredrick K.C. Price, Dr. Merthie was ordained and became a member of International Word of Faith Ministries (FICWFM) Dr. Merthie served as Area Director during his membership with (FICWFM)
Dr. Merthie married his childhood sweetheart Ruth Lawson in 1976. They were blessed to have four children and four grandchildren. Dr. Merthie and his wife Mrs. Ruth Merthie began a home Bible Study and later established New Life Word Center Church in 1983 as we know it today. Throughout their life together they traveled extensively from the U.S. and internationally, establishing and supporting ministries. During Pastor Merthie’s lifetime he established a New Life Christian Academy, served on community boards, had a broadcast on WACX and was active in city and community service. Pastor R.W. Merthie and Mrs. Merthie received their doctorate degree in Divinity from Friends International in Merced, California in 2008. However, Mrs. Merthie passed away suddenly in 2009 which left a void in the New Life Word Center Church. The following were some of the ministries that they brought to the community: The children’s church ministry, annual vacation bible school which greater 500 children attended, CIA (Christians in Action) Ministry and college and career ministry. Noteworthy, Dr. R.W. Merthie founded the first annual Christian Prom in Central Florida to provide the opportunity for the youth to enjoy a special occasion. An annual Youth Retreat was started.
Few years later Pastor Merthie met and married Mrs. Patricia Mozee of Kansas City, Missouri, who had lost her husband from illness after having also been married for 33 years. Together they continued building and serving in the church. Fast forward, Dr. R.W. Merthie had a heart and passion for serving the people, the community and saving families.
Lady Patricia Merthie wanted to begin a Community Service Day by initiating a Dr. Merthie Day. Dr. Velma Williams and Mayor Jeff Tripplet of Sanford, Florida awarded Dr. Merthie the Keys to the City which officially marked the beginning of Dr. Merthie Day. Dr. R.W. Merthie passed away on January 12, 2019. His last service attended; he danced as he exited the church sanctuary saying, “We’ve Won”. We indeed have won because we are still carrying on Dr. R.W. Merthie’s Legacy under new Pastorship of Pastor Carl Eudell and his wife Minister Patricia Eudell. October 2022, Dr. Merthie Day was celebrated with Care Packages due to COVID-19. There was a slight pause due to COVID, but this year is a very special celebration. It will be celebrated by having a bigger than ever celebration to celebrate this 40th year milestone. It will encompass the following: a block party in the church parking lot.
This celebration will take place on SATURDAY, OCTOBER 21, 2023, AT 10:00 AM – 2:00 PM Location: 1311 S. Oak Ave. Sanford, FL 32771 (GIVE AWAY – Vegetables, clothing, household items, and small appliances. PARKING LOT PARTY/KID ZONE (hamburgers, hotdogs, drinks, face painting and games for children). SENIORS SHUT-IN (Call church if delivery is needed with name, address, and phone number.)
The community is invited to come out and take part in this 40th year celebration. For more information call 407-324-0226 or email: NLWORDCENTER@yahoo.com