By Frank J. Buchman
“The ‘cowboy way’ is ‘God’s way’ for the Flint Hills Cowboy Church.”
One of the most elaborate horse facilities in northeast Kansas is under new proprietorship serving horse enthusiasts throughout the Midwest.
“Through God’s Plan for us, we have acquired the Hye Pointe Equestrian Centre east of Manhattan,” said Chuck Asbury,
As founder and pastor of the Flint Hills Cowboy Church, Asbury looks to further develop the already well-designed horse complex. “We have many plans in the works, but our main objective is growth of the Flint Hills Cowboy Church,” Asbury said. “God put this facility in our hands to spread His Word increasing faith among more people.”
Growing up at Wamego with inborn fondness for horses and the Western way of life, Asbury worked as a trucker. “I had a major accident but due to God’s will I did survive,” he remembered. “That was my first real experience getting to know our Lord. But I didn’t listen. I continued to pursue that way of life.”
After changing professions becoming a cowherd manager for Dave Dreiling, Asbury said, “I saw the light. I knew I must follow Christ’s plans for me and my family.”
He formed the Flint Hills Cowboy Church. “It started out small, meeting in a couple different Manhattan locations,” Asbury said. “The church is still small, some people might think, about 50 members. But we are bringing the Lord to more all of the time.”
An opportunity to headquarter the Flint Hills Cowboy Church at Prairie Downs near St. George enhanced following. “Albert De La Garza, an area horseman, was instrumental in helping us locate at that facility,” Asbury credited. “It has been great with increased church attendance along with a number of horse events, several coordinated specifically for youth.”
All of Asbury’s family has been involved in Flint Hills Cowboy Church leadership and organization of horse activities. “My wife Jocelin didn’t have any horse background, but has a strong faith and belief. She has been a major asset in everything,” Asbury acknowledged. “Our children are believers and are now developing outstanding horsemanship skills.”
Children include Wyatt, 16; Ava, 14; Trace, 11; and Morgan, nine. “They love to ride and are very competitive in horse show and rodeo competitions,” Dad praised.
During all of this busy advancing transition, Asbury has helped develop Dreiling’s Booth Creek Wagyu north of Manhattan.
“Wagyu cattle are a unique breed originally from Japan,” Asbury explained. “The Wagyu meat is very rich, tender and tasty. I’ve helped acquire 420 Wagyu cows for the ranch which intends to specialize in merchandising Wagyu meat.”
As proficient as he is in cowherd management enjoying life of a real cowboy, Asbury was given different opportunities. “We have been busy managing the cow operation, organizing Prairie Downs events and growing the Flint Hills Church,” he admitted. “Then out of the blue, the Hye Point Equestrian Centre came on the market for sale.
“It seemed like an out-of-reach endeavor to acquire such a facility,” Asbury continued. “Yet all of us in our family and church members decided it just might be God’s Plan for us all.”
Approaching a lender about acquisition of the horse facilities, Asbury received a positive response. “Our banker bought into what we proposed for developing the layout through the Flint Hills Cowboy Church,” Asbury said.
Now the Asbury family with blessing of Flint Hills Church members has taken over management of the operations. “It is now Covered Cross Stables and Arena home of the Flint Hills Cowboy Church,” Asbury said. “Our family is moving into the nice home right there.”
Located on 94 acres, the horse facilities, designed for English riders, include a 90-feet-by-180-feet indoor arena. “It has excellent rubberized footing so horses can perform at their best all of the time,” Asbury noted.
Twenty-seven individual horse stalls surround the indoor arena. “Then we also have three outdoor arenas,” Asbury said. “One is a Grand Priz-style arena which we intend to further develop for all types of horse events including rodeos.
“We will probably turn one of the outdoor arenas into more parking for when we have large events,” Asbury added.
Stalls are available for rent to horse owners. “We will offer full time care of the horses stabled here,” Asbury said. “Yet, owners are welcomed to look after their own horses as well. They’ll have great facilities to ride, train and work their horses, too”
While designed in 2008 specifically for English riders, the facilities will now be used by both Western and English horse owners. “We are all horse enthusiasts, so there will be activities planned for everybody,” Asbury assured.
“We will have all types of English events as well as cowboy rodeos, horse shows and jackpots,” he reiterated. “Youth are essential to the future of horses, so I plan to conduct youth horsemanship clinics personally. A number of events will cater to the young people.”
Still most important to Asbury is spreading faith in God. “We have regular Flint Hills Cowboy Church Sunday services at 10 o’clock,” he said. “We are a nondenominational church. Here to reach the lost and provide a home for the ones looking for an informal down-to-earth, come-as-you-are church. Here to teach everyone about God,” Asbury declared.
Wednesday evening Bible studies with potluck supper are planned in the near future.
“We really don’t know exactly where God is going to lead us,” Asbury admitted. “With our faith, God is has entrusted us to bring more people to Him.
“Make plans to visit Covered Cross Stables & Arena, attend Flint Hills Cowboy Church, and enjoy life according to God’s Plan.”
As founder and pastor of the Flint Hills Cowboy Church, Chuck Asbury and his family have acquired the Hye Pointe Equestrian Centre east of Manhattan. Renamed Covered Cross Stables & Arena, the already well-designed horse complex is being developed to serve all horse interests throughout the Midwest. Indoor stalls for 27 horses are featured with an indoor arena as well as outdoor arenas at the 94-acres Covered Cross Stables & Arena near Manhattan.
Regular weekly services are conducted at the Flint Hills Cowboy Church which is now at its large horse complex near Manhattan.