In 1973, Rev. Elbert Willis resigned his position as pastor of the First Baptist Church in Baldwin, Louisiana to obey God’s will and start a ministry in Lafayette,La. where God’s people could be taught the Word of God and the message of faith. The first meeting of the “Lafayette Charismatic Teaching Center” in a storefront on University Avenue only had 15 people, 7 of which were himself, his wife and 5 children. In a few years, they had grown to become the largest non-denominational church in Lafayette. The church name was later changed to the Christian Teaching Center and then to it’s present name, the Christian Center Church.
Pastor Willis used his training in the business world to help develop the “Teaching Center” into a place known worldwide through the Bible College he pioneered and developed. As the congregation grew, so did the building. Soon out of space, they purchased 8 acres of land and built new facilities located on Ambassador Caffery Parkway which were totally debt-free. The first services were held there in November of 1978. In 2000, the church property was then sold to Walmart and the church then purchased 18 acres of land on Lagneaux Road where it again built new facilities. God again, faithful to His Word, provided debt free facilities.
Through the years, there have been thousands in this area whose lives were touched through the ministry here. In 1980, after having spent years traveling around the United States with his teaching ministry, the Lord told Pastor Willis to “go to the world.” This was the beginning of what is today Fill the Gap Ministries, the missions outreach of the Christian Center Church. This began a ten-year period of traveling to Africa, Asia, Central and South America, and Europe with the message of “total faith in God” for every area of life. Now, Pastor Willis’ 66 books and thousands of teachings are being distributed in over 107 nations.