Central in Our Community

Community at Central is central to all that we do.

You will find amazing opportunities to make a difference in your life and in the lives of those around you, but you you need to act. Hope for change or difference does not happen without action – in fact, hope and action are inseparable.

We encourage you to take a look at events in our community, as well as opportunities for a variety of fellowship events. You might even want to sponsor one yourself at Central! Here is Central’s Rental Policies & Procedures, if your group is interested in holding a meeting at the church.

CROSS Ministries Food Pantry – Volunteer Opportunities

The CROSS Ministries food pantry, in the Drake Neighborhood, is a DMARC associated food pantry and is open Monday–Friday, 8:00 a.m.–4:30 p.m. and on Tuesday, 8:00 a.m.–5:30 p.m.

The food pantry needs volunteers each week: anytime on Mondays; Tuesdays, 3:00–5:30 p.m.; and Thursdays, 9:00 a.m.–Noon. If you are interested in volunteering for this important mission, please contact CROSS Ministries at 515-279-8877 or Joyce Hoffman at 515-669-1866 to schedule for specific jobs. CROSS is now located in the Impact building at 3226 University Avenue, Des Moines.


A Mid-Iowa Organizing Strategy (AMOS) is an organization comprised of 30 congregations and non-profits across Central Iowa. AMOS believes that ordinary people, working together, can do extraordinary things and make democracy work. Over its history, AMOS has amasses an impressive track record of finding solutions to otherwise divisive, complex public problems through an intensive, win-win, non-partisan approach to politics. Some of these issues include: healthcare and mental health; workforce development; infrastructure improvements; juvenile justice reform; and leadership development. Contact Liz Hall at 515-619-6930 to learn more.

Comparison Project

The Comparison Project enacts a global philosophy of religion in the local Des Moines community. The speaker and dialogue series at Drake University tracks a common philosophical theme through diverse religious traditions. Scholars and practitioners of religion explore the theme from the perspective of particular religious traditions. Comparative philosophers of religion then raise questions of significance about the theme in comparative perspective. The Comparison Project also features online guides to, digital stories by, and photos of local Des Moines religious communities. Through a series of “Religions of Des Moines” classes at Drake University, students work with local religious practitioners to create digital stories about their meaningful practices and beliefs. These stories are housed on The Comparison Project website along with guides to and photos of these communities.

2017-2019 Theme: Miracles – What is a miracle? Is it an objective reality, a subjective assessment of meaning, or merely a cognitive category? When we speak of miracles across religions, do we even share the same concept? Does “miracle” necessarily connote a divine origin, or can the term apply simply to rare or extraordinary occurrences? The 2017­–2019 Miracle series of lectures and dialogues will explore these questions from a variety of religious, philosophical, and scientific perspectives. To view details of past events, go to the Comparison Project and refer to the archives list on the right hand side of the page.

Read Power Program (formerly mentoring/tutoring)

Central Presbyterian Church sponsors a tutoring program on Tuesday evenings during the school year from 5:30 to 7:00 p.m. for children in the community who need a boost in their reading skills. Here they find a friendly environment, a family-style meal and a chance to practice their reading skills one-on-one with volunteer tutors. The program is administered by Everybody Wins! Iowa. Volunteers are always needed as tutors or to help prepare dinner. Sign up to tutor at www.everybodywinsiowa.org. Click on ‘Get Involved’ and select ‘Apply to Volunteer’. For more info, contact Elizabeth Smith or Connie Boesen.