Our History

Our History


In the summer of 1939 the Des Moines Eastside Church of the Nazarene had its beginning in a tent meeting held by the Reverend R.L. Morgan. A former store building at the corner of DeWolf and Easton was rented to house the newly-organized church of nineteen members, and the Reverend C.T. Wiese was called to be the first pastor. Under his leadership ground was purchased at East 26th and Maple Streets and a basement church was constructed. The congregation began worshipping there in April, 1943. The Reverend John Leih, the Reverend H.E. Hegstrom, and the Reverend L.L. Watters succeeded Pastor Wiese at this location.


This building was sold in 1947, and a former United Brethren church and parsonage at East 11th and Maple Streets were purchased. During the occupancy of this property Pastor Watters was succeeded by the Reverend Ray Phillips in 1950, the Reverend E.R. Davis in 1952, and the Reverend Gene C. Phillips in 1959.


In 1958 the church purchased approximately six acres of land just east of East 25th Street and south of Easton Boulevard. Three years later the old church property was sold to the Iowa State Highway Commission and construction began at the new site under the leadership of Pastor Gene C. Phillips.

Praising God for His miraculous help, and very conscious of His Holy Presence, the congregation moved into the new building on Easter Sunday, 1962. Later, the properties to the north and south were purchased and a parking lot and parsonage were constructed.


In 1976, fulfilling a longtime dream of Pastor Phillips, a building was purchased in the inner city at 1425 University Avenue. An extension work, Faith Church of the Nazarene, was opened. Faith Church has subsequently been fully organized and now operates as an independent church at 22nd and Clark Streets in Des Moines.


After twenty-one years at Eastside, Pastor Phillips accepted another pastorate in June, 1980. In July of that year the Reverend Richard Reed became Eastside's eighth pastor. Under Pastor Reed's leadership the sanctuary underwent a major remodeling in 1981, during which time the congregation worshipped in the old Wilson Junior High School building. In 1994 a Family Life Center and additional classrooms were constructed, providing us with a regulation-size gymnasium as well as a much needed facility large enough for all-church fellowships.


Pastor Reed ministered at Eastside for nineteen years, until July, 1999. Rev. Skye Alison served Eastside from August of 2000 through June of 2003. In March of 2004, Rev. Paul Miller became Eastside's tenth pastor in its history; he retired May, 2016.  Pastor Mark Doll began his ministry at Eastside in March 2017.


In 2011, a new Hispanic Ministry began by Jorge and Sarah Vasquez.  They moved away in the fall of 2013 and Pastor Shane Wilson and his wife Maria took over this ministry in October 2013.


Eastside Church has always been characterized as a church committed to reaching people for Christ. We give God praise and thanks for His faithfulness, and we are committed to follow His direction as we seek greater opportunities for ministry and growth. It is our prayer that God will bless and use Eastside Church as it seeks to minister to the total needs of our community.


May all who come behind us find us faithful!



This Eastside Church of the Nazarene Website Is A Memorial To Joeseph Phillip Duteau.