Church History

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History of Our Church

 

A forerunner of Bethel Baptist Church was organized in 1885, run jointly by the Baptist and Methodist Churches. Before long the Baptists outnumbered the Methodists and they decided to separate. The first services were conducted about one-half mile north of our present location where Melvin & Eleanor Sellers now live. This building was also used as a school.


In 1900, J.W. Sellers donated the land for a new Church building. In 1903 a two-story building was erected. It was owned jointly by the Church and the Masonic Lodge and was also used for several years as a school. For the next 30 years, services were held one weekend a month on Saturday and Sunday mornings. Sunday School was an irregular occurrence and was called off entirely during the winter months because the wood and coal stove was incapable of properly heating the Church. On October 9, 1926 Bethel Baptist Church joined the Sulphur Springs Association.


Walton Sellers donated more land in 1934 on which a third building was erected and it too served both a Church and a Masonic Lodge. The 1934 construction effort was lead by M.D. Hollis, Chairman of the Building Committee. He was assisted by Abisha Wilson, Other M. Sellers, Charlie Connally and Ronnie R. Scott. This facility was also used about 30 years.


In 1964 a fourth building was constructed on land donated by Clyde Seller. Instrumental in the project were Roy Belcher, Eugene Hollis, Talmadge Phillips, Dave Howard, Milton White and Chairman, Arnold Sission. Each of these served faithfully on the Building Committee. The Finance Committee for the 1964 building was chaired by Ellen Sellers. She was assisted by Daphne Robbins, Doris Delorme, Earl Phillips, Odessa White, Valera Howard, Ray Fredrick, Dale Hankins and Clayton Sellers. This facility is still in service today. More Sunday School rooms were added in 1977 and a fellowship hall has since been added. In 1984 another 10 rooms and 2 baths were added.


Another step of faith was taken in 1988 when Bethel completed construction on a new pastorium on land owned by Dave and Margie Howard.


In spring of 1996 we began another Building project. This project consisted of remodeling our Sanctuary and extending our Choir Loft so that 5548 square feet of space (classrooms and fellowship hall), 340 square feet of new porches and 1120 square feet of basement were added. The project was completed in April 1997. All classrooms are now occupied and one day we’ll have to add on again, when God’s time is right.


On October 21, 2001, Bethel had to go to two morning worship services.


In June, 2002, papers were signed to purchase from Thomas Sellers a forty-acre parcel across the road from the existing property to be the new home of Bethel Baptist Church.


Plans are currently in progress to design and fund a new facility.

 

In June, 2003, Ground Breaking Ceremonies were held on the new site for our multi-purpose building which serves as Sanctuary and Educational space.


In 2003, the church voted to sell the Parsonage as the current Pastor and his wife wanted to purchase a home in the community. The parsonage was sold and the money applied to the existing loan at First National Bank for the new construction.


In June, 2004, the church held it’s first service in the new Multi-Purpose building with the Dedication Service being held in August of 2004.


On March 10, 2013, Bethel held a Ground Breaking Ceremony for it's new Children and Youth Education Building. The building was completed and Dedication and Ribbon Cutting ceremony was held on March 2, 2014.  

 

 

Pastors

 

1936 - 1950................................................................................................... G.N. Tate

 

1950 - 1952.............................................................................................. G.W. Spruiell

 

1952 - 1966....................................................................................................G.N. Tate

 

1967 - 1972.................................................................................................W.E. Hatley

 

1972 - 1974.................................................................................................J.T. Robbins

 

1974 - 1983......................................................................................................C.C. Lett

 

1983 - 1984......................................................................................Leslie Duke (Interim)

 

1984 - 1987.............................................................................................William E. Rice

 

1987 - 1991.............................................................................................Richard Weirick

 

1991 - 1993...............................................................................................Rick Blackerly

 

1993 - 2000............................................................................................A. Glenn McCall

 

2000 (Interim)                                                                                                Bro. Bill Lee

 

2000 - 2005...........................................................................................Donald D. Batson

 

August, 2006 - Present................................................................................John S. Foles

 

Youth Pastors

                                                                                                                     Scott Bush

                                                                                                                    Scott Green

                                                                                                                Scott Anderson

                                                                                                               Allen Henderson

December, 2001 - January, 2002..............................................................Ralph McCracken

August, 2002 - 2005.........................................................................................Paul Richey

April, 2006 - September, 2007....................................................................James Copeland

May, 2008 - March 2010..................................................................................Chad Durrett

October 2010 - Present......................................................................................Justin Oden

 

 

 

Minister of Music

1969 - 1980................................................................................................Gene Cruce

1980 - 1982...................................................................................................Paul Morin

1983 (Feb - May).......................................................................................Stuart Condra

1983 (June - Nov)...........................................................................................Terry Miller

1983 - 1986..............................................................................................Sharon Moses

1986 - 1988.................................................................................................Del McElroy

1988 - 1992......................................................................................................Allan Lott

1993 - 1995..................................................................................................Vince Helms

1995 - July 1998...........................................................................................Charlie Norris

July 1998 - Dec 1998..........................................................................Craig Bonta (Interim)

Dec 1998 - ..........................................................................................Larry York (Interim)

September 1999 - October, 2007......................................................................Steve Griffin

October, 2007 - February 2009 .................................................Interim - Craig Bonta and Matt Piper

February 2009 - Present.......................................................................................Craig Bonta

 

Children’s Minister

March 10, 2002 - October, 2008.........................................................................Lori Teague

July 29, 2009 - Present................................................................................. Colleen Latham


 

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