Article and Photomontage: Suzanne Steed
Vistula Community, sometimes
referred to as "Little Africa" was
settled by Black Americans years ago
when Houston County was very young
Small bridges still connect one area with another and roads often have grass growing in the middle. The Union Grove Church still stands as well as the Vistula Church of God in Christ whose teachings were under the auspices of Bishop Charles Harrison Mason. The basic Theology of the Vistula Church of God in Christ was (as it is today ) that the Baptism of the Holy Spirit is given to all Christian believers who ask for it. Divine healing is practiced, not to the exclusion of medical supervision. Holiness of life and practice are emphasized. The ordinances of the Church, as act of obedience to Faith, are water baptism, the Lord's Supper and the Ordinance of Humility or foot washing.
This one room Church of Vistula is one of a few examples of early church architecture that remains.
Today there is a new set of architectural ideas and designs that have replaced the wooden floors, open windows for cooling and light, wood heaters for heat, and hard benches to sit. Churches are larger, membership is greater and visions have broadened with access from a major roadway the only place to locate. The times have changed us.