Sunday, May 21, 2000
Members of the First Christian Church of Tyrone will meet under the brush arbor Sunday, just as their founders did 100 years ago.
Period dress is encouraged and Wye Huxford, the church's minister, will be clothed in simple black trousers, white shirt, and narrow black tie.
According to the congregations's historical record, ... it was decided, that to provide a meeting place, the men would cut some trees, split some of the logs into slabs to be used as seats with pegged legs. The remainder of the timber and the limbs were used to make the brush arbor under which the first meeting of the College Park Christian Group was held.
Huxford has ministered to the 450 members of his congregation for 17 years, going back to the time when the church was on East Main Street in downtown College Park. First Christian conducted its first services in its current home on 25 acres off Jenkins Road in Tyrone July 23, 1995. Future plans include construction of a permanent sanctuary, leaving the stained glass-appointed fellowship hall open to meetings for church and community groups.
Associate minister Billy Rowe has served the church 25 years this week. Twenty-five years is a long time, but it seems like just a few years ago that I sat in the Fishermen and Willing Workers Sunday School classroom... they offered me the job as youth minister. As I left the meeting feeling proud and ready to start my new job E.E. Rigsby stopped and said, `Welcome aboard, I hope you stay with us for awhile.'
In 1998, the church celebrated a homecoming. It was noted that few churches in America reach the age of 100. Even fewer reach that age with any sort of healthy sense of future. God has greatly blessed us in that while we anticipate celebrating our 100th anniversary on Sept. 10, 2000, we do so as a healthy, vital fellowship of God's people who are convinced that the best is yet to come.
Memories of First Christian from its time on East Main to its relocation in 1966 to Old National Highway were rekindled by some of the older church members for a memory book.
Bob and Doreen Puckett recall, The beginning of our children's church, as far as we know the first in any Christian church in Georgia (or any other church, for that matter) and how many of those youngsters from yesteryear are still active in churches in the U.S.A. and in foreign lands.
John Bowen has fond memories of crawling underneath the pews in the sanctuary from the back to the front, and doing it in such a way that it did not disturb the adults that were having choir practice.
Jack Lenderman remembers, Amy Duckett and Linda Richardson being called down by Bob Puckett (former pastor) during the service for talking and giggling.
Sunday's special outdoor service begins at 10:30 a.m. A picnic lunch on the grounds will follow the service and at 6 p.m. the children's choir will perform Father Knows Best.