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BY MIKE AVITT
I think Allendale’s official population is about 55 but something big is happening there and I’ll tell you about that in a minute.
Dave Hardy sent me this picture of the Allendale Baptist Church in its early days. I believe the photo was posted on the Facebook group, Worth County Progress Organization, along with some historical information recorded by the late Pansy Rinehart.
The congregation was formed about 1870 and the church building erected in 1890-91 on land previously owned by Joseph and Minerva Hammer. Multiple additions were built from the 1940s to the 1970s. The last of seven stained glass windows were installed in 1967. In 1984, land was purchased across the street for a trailer to act as a parsonage.
After all the additions and improvements the church held twenty classrooms, a kitchen, a library, bathrooms, recreation and dining space, and an auditorium. So, nothing left to do, right?
Unless you want to build a big, new church building across the street east, which is exactly what’s happening. Dave showed me some pictures of the new church on his computer, and I forget how many square feet it is, but it is really big. Parts of it are two-story, concrete and wood-frame. The money came from donations and most of the labor is volunteered by the locals. Jason Tibbles is the construction supervisor.
I was in the old church on only one occasion and that was in 1987 when my brother Dave Perry married Lisa Groom. I don’t know what will become of the old church when the new one is done.
I’ve got some space left so I’ll tell you about two other church expansions I know about. One is the non-denominational church in Clearfield, I think it’s called Area Bible Fellowship. A very large addition was built to the north of the church a couple of years ago. It looks like a gymnasium.
The other is Trinity Christian Church a few miles west of Decatur City on Highway 2. The congregation there constructed a large building about 2016 that I know has a gym, classrooms, and other space. My old friend Rev. Terry Roberts is the pastor there.