Boonville Baptist Church members celebrate 200 years.


October 31, 2009
The Boonville First Baptist Church kicked-off the beginning of a yearlong celebration on Saturday October 31 with the placing of a banner that stretches 33 feet across and five feet in height across it’s church building Saturday with the words “Standing Up For Jesus for 200 years ; 1810 -2010 with green letters on a white background. The banner was donated by Otis inc. of Lyons Falls, New York. The first worship service was actually held in November 1809 but the Church was not charted by the American Baptist Churches till the following February 1810. The Church was organized with Seventeen members. Headquarters for the American Baptist Churches is Valley Forge, Pennsylvania though each American Baptist Church is autonomous.
Over fifty congregants stood in front of the Church Saturday Afternoon in the pouring rain to see the banner put into place and to hear Rev. Joe Feller proclaim “Our bicentennial year has begun. It is our year of Jubilee.” He was referring to the Biblical Passage where God told the Hebrew Nation to celebrate every 50 years with the cancelling of debts and having a yearlong celebration. The First Baptist church has no debts to cancel but is in fact celebrating the paying off of two big projects for the church the renovation of eight stain glass windows and the placing of a twenty feet handicapped assessable ramp in the front of the building. The church anticipates refurbishing it’s front doors, a large stained glass window that covers the front of the church and the placement of a handicapped assessable bathroom.
The Rev. Feller explained that the yearlong celebration will focus on two weekends: one in March and the other in May, as well as several events in July and several smaller events throughout the year. The church is also selling t-shirts and canvas bags at no extra cost to its congregants. There will also be several smaller items given away throughout the year at no charge to the congregation or community.
Church members were considering closing the doors just a few years ago with less than 12 in attendance, now attendance averages around 55 and new people are coming all the time. “Were coming to life;” said congregant Marilyn Fowler. “I really believe that 2010 is going to be our year. “ Several other congregants voiced the same. “Our Church is dedicated to it’s members and to the community we serve; said member Ed Simanowski. “We’re always looking for new ways to get involved with the community.”
The banner was being unveiled to coincide with All Saints Day which takes place on the Christian Calendar each year on November 1. The Church at the same time the banner was being unveiled was also preparing to be open to youngsters that night where they were expecting to give out over 400 donuts, cups of hot chocolate and bags of treats. The banner will stay on display for the entire bicentennial year.

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