Fall Creek Centennial

A centennial celebration was held at the former Unity Methodist Church in Fall Creek, Ore. The joint service was attended by more than 130 Methodists, Seventh-day Adventists and friends on Saturday, May 7. Many former members traveled from distant parts of the state to attend.

Built about 1904–05, the church was owned by the Methodist Church for more than 70 years. In 1973, the building was rented and later purchased by the Seventh-day Adventist Church, which owns and operates it today.

The two-part program started with a chronology of the church followed by a narrative history of facts about the church over the last century. The narrative was accompanied by a PowerPoint presentation of baptisms in nearby Fall Creek, weddings, familiar faces, burning of the mortgage and other interesting moments in the life of the church. Songs, such as “The Old Country Church” performed by talented vocalists punctuated the presentation. Nine members of the audience whose lives spanned several generations shared their recollections. The first half of the program closed with the audience standing, holding hands, and singing “Side by Side We Stand,” led by a guitar trio and piano.

The worship service featured keynote speaker Dwight K. Nelson, Pioneer Memorial Church senior pastor, Berrien Springs, Mich. Nelson recounted how this church was his first pastorate after graduating from the seminary 30 years ago. Several other ministers who had served in this church as young men also participated in the program, and a number of guests responded to the appeal, making decisions for Christ. A roll call of the generations concluded the service.

As the near-capacity crowd left the historic church, each guest tolled one peal on the belfry bell, rendering a 100-bell salute to the old building. After a group photograph on the church steps, the guests enjoyed a fellowship luncheon together.

September 01, 2005 / Oregon Conference