The Byron Center Methodist Church

    In Noah L. Crocker's biography, it is stated that he was one of the founders of the Methodist Episcopal Bible class which was in about 1859.  Also, in Mrs. Colley's sketch, she related how she would walk to the McKenney school house to attend church services.

    The Methodist Church was organized before 1861, but they did not have a church building to worship in.  They were privileged to use the McKenney School.  this church unit was one of the Kelloggsville Circuit.

    In 1872, they started to build the church, people all helping and donating lumber from their farms as much as possible.  The church was dedicated in March, 1873.  Also at that time, the Adventist Church was organized.  In Julius McKenney's sketch, it stated he was a generous giver to both churches.

    The stewards of the church were: Jerry Boynton, William Wood and Silas L. Hamilton.  Class Leaders were: Orville Ida and E. G. Hale.  Mr. A. Beech was pastor and A. C. Wheeler was assistant pastor.  M. R. Camburn was secretary.

    Sunday School was organized either in 1876 or 1877.  The Wednesday evening Prayer meeting was established at the same time.

    Conference opened by singing and prayer by M. B. Camburn, chairman.  When the Sunday School was started, about half a dosen people came, but it did not take too long to grow to one hundred members.

    One Sunday afternoon, in the early days, the Byron Center Metholdist Church was filled to capacity, when the American Flag and the Christian Flag were presented to the church.  The first song was "America" and Mr. Mackey presented the American Flag, which was accepted by Mrs. Leyendecker, then Mrs. Ernest Britton presented the Christian Flag which was accepted by Reb. Morrison.

    "The Star Spangled Banner," was sung by the group, after which Martin Warner, 94 years old, was introduced.  He gave the roll call of his company entirely from memory, and later took an active part in the program.  Eugene Owen, 91, State Department Chaplain, was also introduced.

    Members of the local American Legion marched into the church single file with their flags to seats of honor, at the beginning of the service, and led the procession at the close of the meeting.

    Mrs. Britton made the Christian Flag which was presented.

    The speaker was Rev. Gilford Cosselman, assistant pastor of the First U. B. Church.

    Rather a strange coincident, just this passed Sunday, 3 Feb 1957, the young people of the same church had a very pleasnat surprise for the congregation at the Sunday morning service.  They presented a fine and special dedication service in which they made a gift to the church of tow very beautiful flags, one American and one Christian.  The presentation was made by Lyn McKenney, James Gilbert and Jack Marritt.  The congregation expressed sincere appreciation and great pride in its young people for what it feels was a wonderful and very appropriate expression of their fine love and loyalty to God and Country as well as devotion to the church.  Present pastor is Rev. C. Hutchens, 1957.


Transcriber: ES
Created: 18 January 2014