"Except the Lord build the house, they labour in vain that build it;" (Psalm 127:1)
We had another wonderful Christmas Program and we want to thank all involved. I want to share a writing by Brooke Bates after our Program. This is about a lady that loved the Lord and was faithful to Him and attended Yellow Springs Church, Josephine Thompson.
My Granny’s Church
I go to Yellow Springs Church outside of Meadowview, Virginia. It’s where my Granny Jo went, and her parents went there, and her grandparents, etc. It’s the church my father was raised in. I feel a connection there that has traveled through time over a century or more. I go there with descendants of the people that went to church with my ancestors. When I go there, I feel the peace of God, and a sense of purpose, like I took up where my Granny left off, like I took her place in the congregation.
I loved my Granny dearly, and love her still even though she has passed. I feel her presence in the everyday things around my home that she touched with her hands when she was in this world; her old uncomfortable chairs, her old steamer trunk that stood in her hallway for as long as I can remember, her pictures, dishes, the quilts on my bed. My Granny loved everybody, she didn’t pass judgment (at least if she did, you didn’t know it). She accepted people for who and what they were and the decisions they made. She always said “You can’t live other people’s lives for them.” She always had a kiss and a hug for her “yoans,” whether they were her children or not.
When I go to church, it’s about connections. It’s about passing on the knowledge of God and family and community to my daughter. I met God long ago, and was saved as a young girl. In my teenage years I drifted away, but started coming back around by my mid-twenties. There was never another church that I felt at home at. My mom had taken my sister and I to a neighborhood church some when we were kids, but that didn’t last. Over the years, since I was a little girl spending most every weekend with my Granny, and going to Yellow Springs, and then for countless Easters, Christmases, Homecomings, etc., I kept being drawn back to the place of worship where I felt comfortable and accepted.
Now I never have been a religious church-goer. As a matter of fact, I’ve not really been a very “religious” person. I am a true believer and follower of Jesus Christ. I am a sinner, with my own daily struggles and shortcomings. For many years, I lived a Christian life, and tried to serve the Lord along with my husband, David, in many different ways without being involved in a church. Although I know we were functioning as members of the Body of Christ in many ways.
Since my Granny passed away, I have felt her presence and peace many times. I don’t know exactly how to explain it. I know she is in Heaven, and I don’t really believe in ghosts, so it’s difficult to reconcile. However, shortly after Granny died, I felt a strong calling from the Lord that I could become involved at Yellow Springs Church. Since then, I have tried my best. I might go to church several Sundays in a row, but then miss for a month. I’ve not been a faithful congregant at all, but the folks at church are always happy to see me and my family. They were willing to help when I shared the story of a family I worked with who were homeless. At that time, I realized the value in being involved in a church. There was a time when my husband and I would have had the extra money (or credit) to pay for a week’s stay at a hotel for that family, but that was not the case now.
Although I am not as involved at church as I would like to be, I’m working towards that goal. It’s difficult sometimes with a six year old, and a husband with health problems, but things are getting easier and easier. The Lord has brought our family through great difficulties over the past few years, and I feel like He’s telling me that the blessings are here and more are coming. I know that one of those blessings will be a greater involvement in my church. I will carry on my Granny Jo’s legacy. She became a member in 1963 or 64, and stayed faithful for almost 50 years until she passed away in 2012 at the age of 90. Maybe I can do as much.
Hopefully Yellow Springs Church will continue its legacy as one of the oldest congregations in Washington County, with some sort of church building on the site for almost 200 years. The first being a log structure erected in the early 1800’s, the second being constructed in the early 1900’s and tragically lost to fire a few years back, and the beautiful brick building that now stands. However, while the building is wonderful, and the history of the site is remarkable, the most important part is the people. The many generations of families that have worshipped here, dedicated their lives to God, and have gone out into the world to spread the Good News!
Thanks, Granny Jo!
Dale Myers has been preaching this month and Oct. 5th Phillip Cooper of Marathon Ministries will be speaking and on the 12th Jim Nickels of Appalachian Teen Challenge will be preaching
What an awesome Homecoming on Sept. 14th with Dale Myers speaking and around 80 people came for Worship, fellowship, and food. Thanks to Doug Barrett and Sam McCready for the decorations and to all who contributed food. See the updated photos.
Also check out the photos of the youth and young at heart bike ride down the creeper trail. 20 people were involved in our bike ride and we heard a devotion about how God reveals himself on mountian top experiences but you still have to come down to the valley, and he goes with us.
As of Aug. 3, 2008, our Pastor, Jeff Stout, resigned after much good work in the Lord. We have had 3 professions of faith this year and had 24 baptized in Yellow Springs Creek last month. We are currently seeking pastoral leadership and our address is P.O. Box 304, Meadowview, Va. 24361, phone number at the church is 276-944-3744. Or you can make contact by email.
Contact information - Yellow Springs Church -- email@example.com
Praise the Lord we are in the new building - come join us!
Thanks to all who joined us in our celebration
Check out the latest photos
Sunday School 9:45am
Worship Service 11:00am
Directions to the church
From I-81 Take the VA-80 exit- EXIT 24- toward MEADOWVIEW. 0.2 miles
Turn LEFT (coming from Bristol) RIGHT (coming from Marion) onto VA-80 / VA-50 / GLENBROOK AVE. Continue to follow VA-80 / GLENBROOK AVE. 0.3 miles
Turn LEFT onto HILLMAN HWY / VA-80 0.2 miles
Turn RIGHT onto LINDELL RD / VA-80 3.4 miles
Turn LEFT onto YELLOW SPRINGS RD 0.1 miles to Yellow Springs Church
Pressing On 8/8/07
This past Sunday we had an unusual prayer request. Jake, who is about 11 years old, asked the church to pray for his little brother's duck. He said something has happened to it and it won't walk forward, but it does walk backward rather well. His Mother confirmed that something has happened to the duck and that is exactly what it does. As we get closer to having a brand new church to minister out of and to worship in, I know we all hold great memories of the old church and it's great heritage and that's ok. But let's not tarry there long, God has plans for us as we press ahead and much work to do for the sake of His Kingdom. Let's not be known for being good at going backwards but with God's strength and direction let's press forward. There's a verse that captures this thought.
Brethren,I do not count myself to have apprehended; but one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. (NKJV)
Resurrection Celebration - Easter, 2007
How appropriate that our first service in the new church was a resurrection celebration held early Easter morning (see construction pictures). On an unusually cold Easter morning we gathered talking about surprises, cemeteries, and celebrations. How that in the most unusual places God shows himself and when Jesus said Mary's name in the grave yard she recognized him as her Lord and she worshiped Him, a celebration in the cemetery. We gather in a place where a year ago we walked through ashes and today we recognize that it is only by the Grace of God are we able to again celebrate here in this place the Hope we have in our resurrected Lord, Christ Jesus. We also realize that there will be another celebration that He has planned for us and we pray that your name will be on the guest list.
Ground Breaking Ceremony - Oct. 29, 2006
Our Sunday morning service was crowded as Rev. Larry Lilly preached the Word. Our attendance this morning was 42 and our ground breaking ceremony was well attendended (see our added photos). We have signed a contract with Rick Compton who has experience in building churches and has been in the construction business for over 25 years. Eric Taylor is hoping to get started with the foundaton work this week. Here are excerpts from our ground breaking service.
"What a year we’ve had – How easy it would have been to throw up our hands and give up! And yet God has brought us back here to this place, He has paved the way and proved His faithfulness in His promise that “with God all things are possible”. Today we continue to stand on His promises as a people full of hope. We break ground today not only for the sake of those within this circle, not only for our neighbors, but so that the name of Jesus can be lifted up for us and for the generations to come.
I pray Lord that you bless this ground, bless those who come here seeking your salvation and your presence, bless all the leaders and teachers that proclaim your Word, and bless all of us who are your ministers, please bless the workers as you yourself know what it’s like to be a carpenter.
May this building be all about You! We love you and seek your Guidance! In the name of Jesus, who is the cornerstone of Your Church."
We each signed our names and wrote favorite scripture versus in a bible to be placed beneath the Eastern corner of our foundation.
Sept 10, 2006
We continue to have guest speakers and we want to thank Mike Somers, John Yeatts, and Jeff Stout for preaching. We talked about coming out of our comfort zone for Christ and we heard Connie Mann give a devotion, Neta Findley read Psalms 122, Mike Crenshaw played his guitar and sang some songs, and Sandi Rasnake spoke about the love of our Father.Dee Dee Taylor has headed up the gathering of supplies to go to Project Crossroads, a ministry in Marion, Virginia, for flood buckets that remain in stock to be delivered to flood areas around the country and we will deliver those soon. We have a draft of bylaws and are expecting more quotes on building the church soon. God is at work in and through the people of Yellow Springs Church.
July 16, 2006
We had a record crowd Sunday, we moved to the gymnasium and 47 people attended Worship and Sunday School services. Harvey Clark was our guest speaker and Philip Cooper from Marathon Ministries also joined us in worship. We had a cookout afterwards and our thanks goes out to Alan and Kevin Parris, the chief cooks. Kevin Fields, a young man who recently started attending our church, gave his heart to the Lord (A photo will soon be in our Photos section along with picnic photos). Randy Parris said today was a good day and after Kevin asked Jesus into his heart it became a great day!!! Philip Cooper will be speaking July 23 and Danny Thompson of Good News Jail Ministry will be speaking Aug. 6th.
July 7, 2006 Update
We continue to meet at Hayter's Gap Community Center for worship at 10:00am and Sunday School at 11:00am. Please remember our cookout at noon on July 16th with Harvey Clark from Carvasso UMC as a guest speaker for our worship service.
Several have asked if Yellow Springs Church will be rebuilt. I don't know of anyone from Yellow Springs Church that did not want the church rebuilt on that same spot. Yes there were concerns, issues, and questions, but we were all hopeful. As you can tell in our photos the original site is being prepared for building. We have been making preparations by talking with architects, builders, surveyors, civil engineer, an attorney, and seeking wise counsel. We are in the process of getting electricity to the property, looking at existing newly built churches to get ideas, drawing floor plans and praying for God's guidance.
We will soon form a building committee and start receiving some concepts and bids. So far we have not determined much other than a 40foot by 100foot structure would fit on the site. The configuration and the type of construction will be dictated by our budget and how much encouragement and participation the community will lend.
Please keep us in your prayers as we go forward for the Kingdom's sake.
June 29, 2006 Update
Kim Goddard, Abingdon District Superintendent, chaired the meeting and answered all of our tough questions. I'm very thankful for the way the meeting was handled. The United Methodist Church was very gracious in their dealing with a congregation that is still shook up from the burning of their place of worship. To help clarify, the meeting was held due to our land survey that determined the 100 years structure that burned was on property that was not associated with the deed to Maiden Springs Meeting House in 1823. Since a new deed would have to be drawn, then they requested that if we choose to be a United Methodist Congregation we would have to place a "trust clause" within the deed.
We at Yellow Springs Church are very proud of our Methodist and Baptist heritage over the past 200 years as a Union church. We decided by more than a 2/3 vote to disconnect with the UMC. Our first worship service was Sunday, June 25th with Randy Parris preaching and 37 attended. We continue to covet your prayers as we continue our long history of striving to serve Jesus Christ and bring souls intoHis Church. I hope we continue to cooperatively minister with all the churches that we have built good relationships with in our community.
Someone asked me if we were an independent church now. I told them "Yes in one sense; but, we will always be fully dependent on our Lord." We will be inviting speakers for Sunday morning worship and relying upon the Lord to send a pastor for this flock. Right now our worship service starts at 10:00am with Sunday school at 11:00am. We have a picnic planned for July 16th at Noon, please join us anytime you can.
The following letter was mailed by the Abingdon District Superintendent to all the members of our congregation.
Shayne Crenshaw -- firstname.lastname@example.org
June 1, 2006
Dear Members of Yellow Springs United Methodist Congregation,
This letter is to inform you of a called Church Conference at the Hayter’s Gap Community Center in Hayter’s Gap on Thursday, June 22 at 7:00 p.m. All members of Yellow Springs UMC are voting members of the conference.
The purpose of the church conference is for members of Yellow Springs United Methodist Church to determine whether they continue as a United Methodist Church.
On February 4, 2006 an act of arson destroyed the 100 year old church building. Since then, ongoing discussion naturally centered around the questions of when, where, how, and if to rebuild. As district superintendent I met with the congregation on February 19 and April 23 to answer questions and discuss options. No official vote was taken, however the current consensus is to rebuild on the site of the burned building and to do so without a reference to the United Methodist Church in the new deed. After examination of the Book of Discipline and consultation with the Bishop and Holston Conference Cabinet it was determined that a United Methodist Congregation cannot build a church without a trust clause in the deed expressly linking the building to the United Methodist Church and the local congregation.
Obviously, the decision of the Church Conference on June 22 will have profound impact on the congregation. The church conference will offer opportunity for discussion prior to a vote, but the basic implications are as follow:
If the congregation votes to discontinue as a United Methodist Church --
1) Church membership transfers to a congregation requested by individual members or another United Methodist Church.
2) The United Methodist Church no longer supplies clergy.
3) Yellow Springs chooses how, when or if to rebuild without further consultation or regard for the United Methodist Book of Discipline or Holston Conference.
If the congregation votes to continue as United Methodist --
1) The congregation follows the procedure for building as outlined in the 2004 Book of Discipline, paragraph 2543.
2) A trust clause will be included in the property deeded to Yellow Springs UMC as outlined in paragraphs 2503 and 2535 of the Discipline.
3) Yellow Springs UMC maintains its 100+ year relationship with Holston Annual Conference which includes appointment of clergy leadership.
If you have questions you may contact the district office at 276-628-4421.
Kim M. Goddard