Schoharie County NYGenWeb Site
Historical Sketch of the
First Baptist Church
of the Town of Summit
by Thomas Broxholm
originally printed in a publication called Stars and Stripes, 1913
submitted by Franklyn Ingram
electronic text by Doug Boyer
On September 21st, 1895, Walter Covey Hicks tendered his resignation as church clerk on account of his anticipated removal from the church and vicinity. Peter H. Payne was elected to fill the office.
A little about Brother Hicks. He joined the Jefferson Baptist Church, December 6, 1856, and remained a member of it for sixteen years, when he became a member of the First Summit Baptist Church, and continued as such for twenty-three years after which he took a letter of dismission therefrom and united with the Baptist Church of East Worcester, and is still (1913) a member, being a deacon.
In a note in the First Summit Baptist Church Book, he says if himself: "In the devil's service 14 years. Since then I have been trying, in much weakness, to serve God for 39 years."
And here it is now 1913, and the good brother is alive yet, and has now served God over 56 years. How good it would be if many others has as good a record.
Peter H. Payne was regularly present and served as clerk for some two years, and then for a year and a half was not regularly present, but still retained the office, during which time several served as clerk pro tem, among them, Mrs. Lora (Fred W.) Whiteman, Dea. Hiram Rifenbark, Mrs. Amelia Rifenbark, Dea. Rifenbark's first wife. The office was finally declared vacant and Mrs. Anna (Dea. I. B.) gage was elected clerk.
While Mrs. gage was clerk we notice the following written in the book:
"May the Lord help us to consecrate our lives in his service that we may so completely yield self - our will - our all to Him, that we shall feel to trust him to work in us to will to do His good pleasure, knowing He will work out that which is well pleasing in his sight."
Mrs. Gage resigned the office October 27, 1900, and George E. Moore was elected to the office November 24, 1900.
The total membership was 117 in 1900, but of course they were not all available for service. In the church letter to the Association, in the previous year, the number reported was 123, but it was stated that nearly half of them did not help "in attending church nor in contributing to the support of a pastor." Some had moved within the bounds of other churches, but too no letters, hence helping no church financially. Some of them are in the same predicament still. Maybe they don't think that they are in a predicament, but they certainly are. The letter said they could "only expect to reap of the seed that they had sown."
Rev. H. Denton, 1891, 3; Walter C. Hicks, 1891, 2, 3, 5; Deacon Hiram Rifenbark, 1892, 4, 7, 8, 9, and his first wife Amelia, 1892, 4, 9, who is reported in the minutes of 1907 as "At Rest"; Rev. Jesse Evans 1892; D. L. Chickering and wife, 1892; Peter H. Payne, 1892, 3, 4, 5, 6, 8, 1900, and his wife 1892, 5, 8; Marvin Smith, 1892; Mary L. Smith, 1892; Nora L. Payne, 1895; Bertha Payne, 1895; Rev. D. G. Lawson, 1894, 5, and his wife, 1895; Maynard Smith, 1894; Jennie Smith, 1894, 6; Deacon Jacob Payne, 1895, 7, 8, 1900 and his wife 1898; Frank McCann, 1895, 7, 8, and his wife, 1897, 8; Milton Smith, 1895; Cora M. Craft, 1896; Rev. J. C. Lappeus, 1897, 8, 9; Deacon B. W. Gage, 1895, 7, 8; Levi H. Smith, 1897; Licentiate A. J. Toles, 1899; Isaac B. Gage and his wife Anna, 1899, 1900.
1901 - 1910
The church was without a settled pastor until September, 1900, when Rev. E. M. Jones of Brooklyn accepted a call, but in July, 1901, he surprised all by resigning. he went to Pittsburgh, Pa.
At that time the pastors lived in part of Arthur Sullivan's house.
In November 1901, rev. E. E. Dodsley of Scriba accepted the pastorate, but he did not remain a year, ending his work about October of the
following year. He has since passed to his reward.
At this time, the preaching services were well attended, and the choir did all they could to make the services attractive. Covenant meetings were well attended, but yet some thought they had no responsibility in church matters.
In the summer of 1902, at Port Crane, N. Y., the Rev. Harvey Cornell died. He was pastor of the First Summit Baptist Church for ten years from 1855. he was born Dec. 9, 1810, near Lutheranville, and was converted at the age of 21, and soon after was appointed deacon of the First Summit Baptist Church. His associate as deacon was James S. Martin, father of the present Betsy C. Ryder. he was married to Marie Robbins in 1835. he was licensed to preach in 1836, and was ordained four years afterward at Tioga, N.Y. He served the following churches during his 45 years of active ministry: Port Crane, First and Second Summit, Union, Barton, Triangle, Vestal center, North Chatham, Greenville, Preston Hollow, and Jefferson and Gilboa.
On November 7, 1902, Rev. L. L. Rury commenced work upon the field. Congregations began to increase, and a deeper interest was show.
On December 27, 1902, a vote was taken in regard to purchasing a parsonage. A good-sized house and two acres of land in the village of Charlotteville, owned by Jacob H. Wayman, was secured for $1100. On April 25, 1903, it was voted that Rev. L. L. Rury preach at Lutheranville on Sunday afternoons during the coming summer. However, in the year 1903, unexpected causes diverted the minds of the people so that growth was practically impossible, but the weekly prayer meetings were well sustained.
Mrs. Rury died October 11, 1904. The heart of the pastor was sad.
In the Fall of 1905, Rev. C. M. Jones assisted the pastor, Rev. L. L. Rury, and on Sunday, June 10, 1906, twelve were baptized, namely: Eugene Lewis, Spurgeon Gage, Howard Payne, Leslie Payne, Ralph Payne, Floyd Toles, Norman Rifenbark (died May 9, 1908), Robert Banks, Edith Mccann, Grace Smith, Jesse Rury, and Clora Moore, mainly as a result of the extra meetings.
On account of failing health, Rev. Rury had to give up active service in the ministry, and closed his pastorate in December, 1905, though he supplied until April 1, 1906. he purchased a farm and settled in Charlotteville.
On April 14, 1906, Deacon B. W. Gage passed to his reward. he had been a supporter of the church for about 60 years.
After April 1st, 1906, the voice of the candidate for the pulpit was heard again, and Rev. C. F. White was called and was on the field in June. "Peace, Harmony, and effectual fellowship continued to reign with our old Zion." but he preached his farewell sermon April 6, 1907, after which Rev. C. H. Manning of east Worcester preached to the church Sunday afternoons for a time. Then followed candidating by the following: Rev. W. Tipple, Rev. W. Brewster, Rev. Harry Payne, and Rev. W. W. Stilwell until May, 1908, when Rev. Thomas Broxholm was called to the pastorate.
On Sunday, May 10, 1908, the rev. Thomas Broxholm of Middlefield was called to the pastorate and commenced his labors at the Covenant meeting, Saturday, May 23rd. On the following day he preached a memorial Day sermon, about seventy being present, and among them one old Civil War veteran, namely, Rev. Levi L. Rury. In the afternoon, he returned to Middlefield and preached a memorial Day sermon to a very large congregation, but there was not among them even one old veteran. How different to the time when he preached his first Memorial sermon at Stamford, twenty-three years before, when the old soldiers marched into
the church in a body and occupied the front seats that had been reserved for them. He could not commence on the Sunday (May 17th) following the call, on account of the condition of his work in Middlefield, and so preached in Middlefield on that date, after the service baptizing in Cherry Valley Creek, Mr.. and Mrs. Lyman Hinman, Frank Ottaway, and S. F. S. Broxholm, his son.
The brethren began moving his household goods May 21, and Floyd S. Wright took the first load, the distance from Middlefield to Charlotteville being about seventeen miles. On June 2nd, Will A. Ryder took a second load. On Friday, June 5, Rev. Broxholm hired George Garlock to take the third load, the charges being $8. and horses fed. Afterward Deacon Hiram Rifenbark hired Peter Francis to take the fourth load for $5. but he would draw no more at that price and finally June 25, the rev. Broxholm paid him $8. to draw the last load, the church paying $3.40 of the amount.
On June 10 and 11, the Worcester Baptist Association met with the Schenevus Baptist Church and the following were the delegates from the venerable Church: rev. and Mrs. Thomas Broxholm, Deacon and Mrs. Hiram Rifenbark, Mrs. Thos. S. Lincoln, Mrs. Dora Baldwin, and Miss Nina Baldwin, now Mrs. John Baker of Lutheranville. The church reported to the Association 96 members, the year previous the report being 100. The following year (1909) the membership was wrongly reported in the Minutes, it being stated that the membership for that year was 96. It ought to have been 92, as the increase was 2 by letter and the decrease was 3 dismissed by letter, 1 dropped and 2 by death. In 1910, 96 are reported in the Minutes of the Association. The number ought to have been 92, as during the year there was neither increase nor decrease. They say figures won't lie, but by comparing the figures in the Association Minutes you will find that they do not always tell the truth. In the Association Minutes for 1911, the membership for 1910 is reported as 88. As already stated, in the Minutes for 1910, it has been reported as 96. It is hard to see how the church clerk should have made so many mistakes in his reports.
Good congregations greeted the Rev. Broxholm and an excellent Sunday School was sustained under the able leadership of Superintendent W. A. Ryder. On July 19th there was an extra good congregation and the remark was made by Mrs. Hiram Rifenbark who had recently married Deacon Rifenbark and had come to live among the people: "One would wonder where all the people come from among these hills." On that Sunday, 70 remained for Sunday School. Everything looked prosperous. But the hills are not now so thickly populated as they were.
At the Covenant meeting the following Saturday (July 25), twenty-four were present, namely: rev. and Mrs. Broxholm, Rev. Rury and granddaughter Jessie, Dea. and Mrs. H. Rifenbark, Mrs. Levi Smith, George M. Smith, Frank Ridge, Mrs. Frank Truax, Dea. Gage, Miss Carrie Gage, (now the wife of Rev. W. Stilwell), Miss Grace Smith, Supt. W. A. Ryder, Seabury Toles, Mrs. Dora Baldwin, Miss Nina Baldwin, (now Mrs. John Baker), Mrs. T. S. Lincoln and daughter, George Moore, Mrs. Mary Moore, Miss Clora Moore, Roger Broxholm, and Miss Lois Broxholm.
On August 2nd, the pastor started afternoon preaching services at Lutheranville and kept them up until the second Sunday in November, and then, as the people did not want services in the late Fall and winter, they were discontinued.
On Sunday, August 15, the Sunday School in connection with several other Sunday Schools of the surrounding villages picnicked at Summit Lake, and had a very enjoyable time.
On Wednesday evening, September 23rd, cottage prayer meetings were started, the first being held at Deacon H. Rifenbark's and were continued
about one-third of the time of Elder Broxholm's pastorate. They were for the benefit of the people living in the village. They were held at Charles Dibble's, at Miss Zilpha Lincoln's, at W. A. Ryder's, at Levi H. Smith's, at Mrs. Mahama Silvernail's, at George E. Moore's, at the parsonage, at Deacon H. Rifenbark's etc. The Thursday evening prayer meetings at the church were maintained until February 24, 1910, when they were discontinued, as no one seemed to attend except the pastor and his family. The church being more than a mile from the main street in the village, scarcely anyone ever walked up to the prayer meeting. It was about one and a quarter miles from the parsonage. In reference to the second to the last meeting held, the following record is in the pastor's note-book: "Our family tramped up through the snow, lighted the fire, tolled the bell, waited, read a Psalm, prayed, went home through the storm." ever afterwards until the pastor closed his work, the prayer meetings were held in the village homes.
In October, Wilney H. Wilcox of Binghamton, presented the church with a bell in memory of his father, Barney Wilcox, who was clerk of the church from March 25, 1865 to August 25, 1877. Elder Broxholm was requested at the Covenant Meeting held October 24, to draft resolutions of thanks to Mr. Wilcox to be adopted on the first Lord's Day after the bell had been placed in position, and to be printed in the Charlottesville Herald. The resolutions follow:
WHEREAS, We, as a church and society have been long years without a bell, keenly realizing at times, that a bell would be an excellent adjunct to our church property, and believing that the cheerful tones of a bell would be a constant and cheerful invitation to those living within its sound to attend the services of the church and that its sound would also be a continual reminder to impress upon the hearts of the people their duty of assembling for the public worship of Almighty God; and
WHEREAS, We believe that a church bell tends to make the people punctual in attendance by its ringing to mark the hour set apart for Divine worship and that it helps on the Lord's Day to remind the careless that it is holy time set apart for service to Almighty God and that it may consequently waken in their hearts a sense of their duty toward Him; and,
WHEREAS, our friend, Wilney H. Wilcox, in memory of his father of saintly recollection, who was long a consistent member of the First Summit Baptist Church and an active worker for the welfare of the same, hath presented said church with a bell, grave and voluminous in tone, and which bell hereafter will ring to the glory of God in calling upon the people to Divine worship; be it therefore
RESOLVED, That we as a church and society are thankful to our Heavenly Father that He has permitted us after long years of waiting to be blessed in having a bell on our church edifice and that we will show our gratitude to God by always assembling at its cordial call for Divine worship whenever it is possible for us to do so; and further be it
RESOLVED, That we as a church and society hereby tender our heartfelt thanks to our friend, Mr. Wilcox, for his great kindness of heart in making such an appropriate and excellent present to this church, hoping that after he shall have done hearing the cheerful tones of the church bells of the Church
Militant here on earth, that he shall be gathered with the Church Triumphant in regions Celestial, ever to hear the bells of Heaven ringing salvation's praises in the hearing of the blessed saints of the holy angels of God the Father, of God the Son, and of God the Holy Ghost; and further be it
RESOLVED, That these resolutions be printed in the Charlotteville Herald published in the town of Summit, and that a copy of the same resolutions be sent to Mr. Wilcox.
The bell was placed in the church spire Wednesday, November 11, Hadsell Bros. of Worcester, doing the work. Fred M. Whitman and George E. Moore drew the bell over from the railroad station at east Worcester. The resolutions were adopted Sunday, November 15.
On Thursday evening, Dec. 3, 1908, Samuel F. S. Broxholm began his sextonship of the church.
On Wednesday evening, Dec. 9, a donation was tendered to Rev. Thos. Broxholm. It was held in Rifenbark's Hall, over a hundred being present. The proceeds amounted to $43.05. Deacon Gage who had become imbued with Christian Alliance ideas was much opposed to this donation, and tried to persuade the pastor not to accept it. When asked by his pastor why he should not accept it, he was informed that it was a wrongful thing and that people would assemble in the hall and commit adultery in their hearts. What an idea. But the elder did not take any stock in the deacons remarks, and informed him that a donation from the people was a part of a pastor's living.
A roll call was held at the church Dec. 19, and proved to be a profitable occasion. In the morning, after singing and Scripture reading, the Rev. W. M. Tipple of Dorloo lead in prayer, after which about two-thirds of the roll was called, when the hymn "When the Roll is called up Yonder, I'll be There", was very touchingly sung and then adjournment was had for lunch. In the afternoon the roll was completed. Many were cheering and encouraging words of those present. The letters breathed loyalty to the old home church. All desired to live more consecrated to the Lord's service. Very tender were the words from two of the aged sisters, Aunt Hepsy Robbins and Mrs. Betsy C. Ryder. The former has since gone to her eternal home, and the latter is patiently waiting to hear the call to enter the portals of everlasting blessedness. Thirty-nine members responded in person, thirteen by letter and seventeen by proxy - 69 in all, a goodly representation of the membership. Sickness and death prevented some from being present. In the roll call here on earth all may not be present, but in the "Roll Call Up Yonder" all will be present. In the afternoon, Rev. Levi L. Rury led in prayer, Rev. W. M. Tipple delivered the address, and Pastor Broxholm an address, and pastor Broxholm preached from the text: "Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father in Heaven is perfect." Services closed by singing the following hymn written by the pastor:
OUR OLD CHURCH HOME
'Mid chapels and churches, where 'er we may roam,
There never is a place like our old church home!
A sweetness in worship, we seem to find there,
Which, seek where we may, is ne'er met with elsewhere!
Home, home, old church home,
There never is a place
Like our old church home!
A sight of its humble form does our hearts good!
The sound of its bell cheers as nothing else could;
Without and within, there's a charm to the place,
Which, roam where we may, time can never efface!
A homeness prevails, when we worship God there!
Oh, how well we know it - it's felt in the prayer,
The scripture that's read, and the sermon preached then;
It's heard in the hymns and the final Amen!
Union revival meetings were begun in the Methodist Episcopal Church in the village Friday evening jan. 1, 1909, and were continued for two weeks. Rev. J. R. Hewitt at the time was pastor of that church, and he and Elder Broxholm took turns in preaching.
The following were present at the Lord's Supper, Sunday, february 7: Rev. Broxholm and wife, Rev. Levi L. Rury, Deacon Hiram Rifenbark and wife, W. A. Ryder and wife, Levi Smith and wife, George E. Moore and wife, Samuel G. S. Broxholm, Mrs. Minnie Rury and daughter Jessie, Mrs. Roxy Payne, Floyd Toles, Mrs. Emma Smith, Miss Grace Smith, Mrs. Frank Truax, Miss Carrie Gage, Miss Elizabeth Gage, Mrs. Dora Baldwin, Miss Nina Baldwin, L. Ray Baldwin, Miss Clora Moore, Nelson Bruce, Frank Ridge, Joseph Payne, Roy Lincoln, and Mrs. Austin Payne. The number was 31.
On January 1, 1909, the pastor began the publication of the Stars and Stripes, to help him in his work. It was well received by the church, the town, and the surrounding community, as well as on other fields where the pastor had labored. It soon had a circulation of over 300, and was the only religious paper entering some homes. The subscription price was one dime per year.
On February 14, 1909, the pastor began preaching on Sunday afternoons at the Center Valley Schoolhouse. On entering the old schoolhouse and looking around, pleasant memories were awakened in his heart, for over twenty-two years from that time, the pastor had walked from Stamford, previous to Sunday, and preached in the morning at the First Summit Baptist Church in exchange with Elder Peloubet and then in the afternoon at the old schoolhouse. (See second installment)
A Sunday School was organized, with Eugene Lewis as superintendent, Milton Stilwell as assistant superintendent, and Morris Stilwell as Secretary and Treasurer.
Rev. Broxholm continued to preach at Center Valley on Sunday afternoons until December 12 following, when he discontinued services. During the spring and summer a portable sawmill had been in operation, and some working in it had moved away, thereby lessening the interest in the meetings. The Elder enjoyed the work, generally walking over the hill to the place of appointment, the distance being about six miles there and back to Charlotteville.
Quite a good Sunday School was maintained during the summer, and on June 20, Children's day was royally observed, fifty-four being present. The recitations and singing were excellent, and those who labored to make it a success did their work well. Among those who took part in the exercises were the Misses Ethel Wright, Edith Smith, Goldie Barton, Olena Rifenbark, Julia Crandall, Daisy Smith, Jennie Barton, Minnie Robinson, Helen Rifenbark and Ida Smith and Masters Edwin Mitchell, Arthur Rifenbark, Howard Lewis, Ernest Barton, Melvin Rifenbark, Floyd Ridge, Jacob Crandall and Frank Barton, and Mr. and Mrs. Eugene Lewis.
The following are some of the comments concerning the Center Valley work, taken from the pastor's note book:
"Got wet through coming over the hill - wind blew terribly." "Snow squalls today - saw a few wild flowers along the roadsides." "Went over to preach - it rained most of the way - no service - it rained coming back." "Walked over to Center Valley - terribly hot - only a few came." "Walked over to Center Valley - key of schoolhouse lost." (It was during the summer vacation) "Schoolhouse lock broken - trustee says it will be opened every Sunday hereafter." (There had been some opposition somewhere about having the schoolhouse used for religious meetings.)
For his services the pastor received on an average about half a dollar a Sunday.
On the evening of Feb. 28, 1909, a C. E. Society was organized, with Roy Lincoln as President, L. Ray Baldwin as Vice-President and Miss Grace Smith as Secretary and Treasurer. About fifty were present. The meetings were followed by a short preaching service. But the C. E. Society was short-lived.
On May 23, with a fair congregation, Rev. Broxholm began his second year.
On June 8-10, the Worcester Baptist Association met at East Worcester. The following were the delegates from the First Summit Church: Rev. Broxholm, Rev. L. L. Rury, Deacon H. Rifenbark, Mrs. H. Rifenbark, Deacon Jacob Payne, F. M. Whiteman, Mrs. F. M. Whiteman, Mrs. Minnie Rury and daughter Jessie, Samuel F. S. Broxholm, Mrs. Emma Smith, and Mrs. John Baker.
There were other Charlotteville people present, but not as delegates. Among them were Mrs. Dora Baldwin, Mr. and Mrs. Philip Van Buren and Frank Ridge.
At the afternoon session of the Sunday School Convention, which as usual preceded the Association proper, pastor Broxholm gave a paper, entitled "The Teacher's Equipment for Service;" Mrs. H. Rifenbark one entitled "Missions in our Sunday Schools;" and Rev. W. McNeil one on "How Can We Bring About Conversions in our Sunday Schools". The Convention passed a resolution thanking the above for their helpful papers.
In the evening session Miss Jessie Rury of the choir of the First Summit Baptist Church touchingly sang a solo entitled "One Soul for Jesus."
The honor of being Moderator of the Association fell upon the Rev. Thomas Broxholm.
On June 26 occurred the 25th Wedding Anniversary of the pastor and his wife. It was a very enjoyable occasion. On the invitation issued the words, "No Presents," were printed, but the good people were very disobedient", and brought in their silver tokens, which with what was received by letter amounted to $25.50, together with a handsome berry spoon and a sterling silver pin. The Rev. L. L. Rury in handing over to the pastor and his wife the silver dollars and goods, made a very neat presentation speech.
On Thursday, November 25, the Union Thanksgiving service was held in the Free Methodist Church. The sermon was preached by Rev. Thomas Broxholm.
As already noted at the Lord's Supper on February 7, 1909, 31 were present, but that number was eclipsed March 28 when 34 were present. On November 28, the number was still larger, 36 partaking of the elements.
On Christmas Eve 1909, the Sunday school of the venerable church celebrated with a tree and exercises. Success was depicted on everything. That same evening Mr. and Mrs. Stephen Stilwell were joyfully celebrating the twenty-fifth anniversary of their wedding at which some ninety people enjoyed themselves, but yet there was enough people left to fill the old
Baptist Church both in the main part and in the gallery.
The tree was a balsam of grand proportions and reached to the ceiling. It was procured by F. M. Whiteman and Nelson Bruce and placed in position under the guiding hand of Deacon H. Rifenbark. The tree and church were decorated by Supt. and Mrs. W. A. Ryder, Deacon H. Rifenbark, mr. and Mrs. F. H. Whiteman, Leslie Payne, S. F. Broxholm and the pastor. To have ample room Frank Truax, Lynn M. Baldwin, L. Ray Baldwin and Geo. M. Smith enlarged the platform by building a temporary addition to it, so that two organs could be placed upon it, with room for the orchestra, which was composed of the following musicians: Frank Truax, L. Ray Baldwin, Roy Hartwell, Leon G. Smith and Lynn M. Baldwin, and yet leaving plenty of space for those participating in the exercises.
The ushers appointed for the evening were Leslie and Ralph Payne, and Floyd Toles and Samuel F. S. Broxholm.
Irving Jones and Frank Ridge also were active in making the affair a success.
The excellent program follows:
Music - Orchestra Christmas Welcome Roger W. Broxholm "Once again the joys of Christmas, Comes to bless our land so dear, And we give a hearty welcome To the friends assembled here." Prayer by the pastor, Rev. Thomas Broxholm Anthem - "Nearer my God to Thee," Choir Recitation Olena Bruce "Folks as small as I am, haven't much to say Just a Merry Christmas, before I run away." Recitation - "My Little Friend" Sylvia Jones Singing - "Cradled in a Manger" Mamie Wheeler, Ethel Smith, Ethel Truax, Lois Broxholm, Minnie Clapper, Ethel Wright. Recitation - "The Christmas Tree" Lois Broxholm Recitation - "Molly's Stocking" Ethel Wright Recitation - "Not Out of Joint" Eliza Truax Solo - "Dear Jesus Ever at my Side" Levi Ryder Recitation - "In a Manger so Low" Ethel Truax Duet - Organ and Cornet Mrs. G. W. Payne and Frank Truax Recitation - "Cristmas Letter" Ruth Whiteman Recitation - "Sermon Time" Levi Ryder Motion Song - "Little Lord Jesus Lies Asleep" Eliza Truax, Ethel Smith, Mamie Wheeler, Minnie Clapper, Lois Broxholm, Ethel Truax, Ethel Wright. Dialogue - Ethel Wright, Ruth Whiteman and Eliza Truax.
Singing - "Lullaby" - Lois Broxholm, Ethel Truax, Ethel Wright, Eliza Truax, Roger Broxholm, Olena Bruce, Ruth Whiteman, Minnie Clapper, mamie Wheeler, Ethel Smith. Recitation - "Drifting Out to Sea" Mamie Wheeler Solo - Miss Jessie Naomi Rury Remarks - Pastor Motion Song - "Snow Flakes" Ethel Truax, Mamie Wheeler Minnie Clapper, Sylva Jones, Lois Broxholm and Ethel Smith. Young Ladies Drill - Mamie Wheeler, Jessie N. Rury, Elva Fox, Lela Ryder, Grace Smith, Alma Bruce, Mrs. Frank Truax and Lois Broxholm. Benediction Rev. Levi L. Rury
The children did extra well. Their songs and lullabys about the infant Jesus were very sweet. The singing of the choir was grand. The music of the orchestra was highly appreciated. Miss Jessie N. Rury sang very affectingly "The Church Across the Way" and the Young Ladies Drill capped the climax.
The tree was laden with presents and immediately after the literary exercises were concluded, the picking of the tree was in order, the following taking part in the performance: Supt. Ryder, Lynn M. Baldwin, Roy Hartwell and Leslie Payne; the following delivered the presents: Ralph Payne, Leon Smith, and Samuel Broxholm. The last present was delivered about ten o'clock which made the occasion more felicitous, as no one was wearied with an over-long program, and all left the church refreshed in body, mind and spirit.
On January 26, 1910 quite a large crowd gathered at the donation tendered to Elder Broxholm. Over $52 were received on the night of the donation, and over $8 were afterwards handed in, making a total of over $60.
Elder Broxholm began preaching at Lutheranville on Sunday afternoons, April 10. Thirty were present. The services were continued until Sunday October 9, inclusive. The largest collection for a single Sunday was $2 and the largest number present on any one Sunday was 45. The average collection was 86¢, and the average congregation was 28.
The following were present at the Covenant meeting Saturday afternoon, May 21: Rev. and Mrs. Broxholm, Deacon and Mrs. Rifenbark, George E. Moore, Floyd S. Wright, Mrs. Fred M. Whiteman, Samuel F. S. Broxholm, Miss Clora Moore, Miss Lois Broxholm and Roger W. Broxholm.
The first business of the meeting was the appointing of delegates to the Association to be held at Worcester, June 7-9, and the following were appointed: Rev. Broxholm and wife, Rev. L.L. Rury and daughter-in-law Mrs. Minnie Rury, and her daughter Miss Jessie Rury, and George E. Moore and wife, all of which afterwards attended the Association except Mrs. Broxholm.
After the appointment of delegates, Deacon Rifenbark made the following motion:
"That the church be moved to the village, if it be thought best, and the matter be acted upon at the next Covenant meeting".
Floyd S. Wright seconded the motion, and being put to a vote it was carried unanimously.
Deacon Rifenbark then made the following motion:
"That the Rev. L.L. Rury, Superintendant W. A. Ryder and FrankMcCann be a committee to look over the road and see about matters appertaining to moving the church and report at next meeting."
The motion was unanimously carried.
Hearts were gladdened that day because they believed the time was fast approaching when the venerable church would have increased opportunities for its advancement.
The pastor hoped there would be a good attendance at the next Covenant meeting, (and there certainly was, as we shall see later on), and that all things might "be done decently and in order." He said that each member ought to ask himself or herself: "Would it be to the glory of God and the advancement of the Lord's truth, if the church is moved?" He urged the brethren to do their duty conscientiously in the matter for God and His truth "as the truth is in Jesus," and declared that self and sentiment ought to be sacrificed in the matter.
The following is a verbatim copy of the venerable church's letter to the Association, and speaks of the "moving of the church."
"DEAR BRETHREN: we are glad to be still associated with you in the Master's work. While we cannot bring a glowing account of great prosperity during the past year, still we are glad to occupy even an humble place in the culture and care of the Master's vineyard. Though there has been no fruitage during the past year to reward our labor and cheer our hearts, yet we are laboring on, hoping and expecting that in God's good time sheaves will be gathered.
"Our condition remains practically the same as in our last year's report. the regular appoints of the church are maintained, the midweek church prayer meeting being held in the village. Congregations very good. Sunday School of special interest, being the most important department of the church's work.
"The advisability of moving the church edifice to the village is now being discussed with some prospects of success. Our pastor is the moving spirit in this enterprise, and is very anxious for its accomplishment.
"Rev. Thomas Broxholm is still with us, who is faithfully preaching the Word, and laboring in saeson and out of season for the salvation of souls, and the upbuilding of the church."
Besides the delegates already mentioned, who attended the Association, the following members were also present: Deacon Hiram Rifenbark and wife, Deacon I. B. Gage and wife, Deacon Jacob Payne, Levi H. Smith, George M. Smith, George E. Moore, Mrs. Dora Baldwin, Mrs. Cassandra Stilwell.
At this time, the following were the officers of the Sunday school: Superintendent W. A. Ryder; Asst. Supt. Mrs. Hiram Rifenbark; Secretary, Miss Jessie Naomi Rury; Asst. Secy. Mrs. John Baker; Treasurer, Mrs. Minnie Rury; Organist, Miss Grace Smith; Asst. Organist, Miss Jessie N. Rury. The Sunday School was in a very prosperous condition and from January 1st until the end of June, 130 different attendants were present. For the previous seventeen months, the pastor had kept a faithful record of the attendance, but the month of June, 1910, eclipsed them all. The highest number on any one Sunday was 62. The different ones present during the month were 79. Of course that was two less than in August 1909, but the average for every Sunday of that month was below the average for every Sunday in June, 1910, which was 52.
The list of names of those present every Sunday during the different months were published in the church paper, the Stars and Stripes. The following is the list for June 1910:
Present every Sunday of the month
Mrs. Dora Baldwin Mrs. L. H. Smith Lois Broxholm Rev. L. L. Rury Roger Broxholm Mrs. Minnie Rury Mrs. Thos. Broxholm Miss Jessie Rury
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