This Old Church, An Origin Story (Continued)
This Old Church, An Origin Story (Continued)
By Guy Evans
A hundred years ago, on a cold and gray December 3, 1923, congregants of the Church of the Brethren turned the first shovels of dirt for their future church. The construction project, CHAPTER TWO of their story, would last six long years, but finally, in 1929, the Brethren began worshiping in their new sanctuary.
(If you missed the first installment of our church building’s history, you can find the initial chapters here in the Tidings.)
In CHAPTER THREE, the church body celebrated its first service in December of 1929. The sanctuary featured banks of tall stained glass windows and a central chancel with a choir loft located behind the pulpit.
Original sanctuary with choir loft behind the pulpit.
But for all of the fresh paint, all was not well.
Two months earlier, in October, the New York stock market crash sent economic shockwaves coursing through the economy. Tithings plummeted and financial conditions became dire within the congregation.
In these uncertain days, a handful of Brethren congregants stepped forward to mortgage their own orchards and homes. With the cash generated by this sacrifice, the new church would survive the Great Depression and finally retire its debts in 1946.
As the Brethren settled into their new building at the corner of Okanogan and Peachy, new rhythms and practices emerged. One of these centered around an emerging technology new to Wenatchee.
Congregants in 1930 would have noticed the appearance one Sunday of a small silver and black object near the pulpit. Called a “radio microphone”, this device captured the sound of the pastor’s voice and broadcast the sermon across the airwaves.
The year before, in 1929, a new radio station had arrived in town with the call signs “KPQ”. Happy to have some Sunday morning content, the station would broadcast the Brethren services to the Wenatchee area for the next four decades.
The KPQ radio engineer sat in the small box balcony to the left of the main balcony and monitored the broadcast of Sunday Services.
Downstairs, in the fireside room and social hall, another service took place for decades. There, the Brethren gathered for the age-old Christian ritual of the lovefeast. Bretheren lovefeasts began with ceremonial foot and hand washings, followed by a meal and finally communion.
A recent tour of the church by a Brethren elder revealed the galvanized tubs and ceremonial robes used in the feast stored safely in a basement closet.
But Brethren life wasn’t all just services and ritual. Church members enjoyed shuffleboard in the basement during cold winter months. The numbers and lines of the court were laid into the original social hall linoleum floor.
A later remodel would bring carpet and a new closet to the basement that covered up the court. But the carpet didn’t extend inside the closet, so the triangles and numbers of the old shuffleboard court can still be seen today.
Wedding photo taken outside the main entrance. Note the balcony and second entrance which no longer exist.
The Brethren also came together in the basement to celebrate the major milestones of life. Weddings, funerals, and anniversaries were commonplace. Fine silver serving trays and utensils along with ornate glass dishes rotated from the buffet tables back to the cupboards with regular frequency.
And in the process, kids grew up, grandparents passed away, and the church found itself in the early 1960’s in need of change.
TO BE CONTINUED…
Let's Communicate About Trinity Youth...
Every Sunday night five youth discipleship groups meet seeking to be face to face with God, our neighbors, and ourselves in Christ. This can look different from group to group, but most groups jump into God’s Word using the Godspeed method. We slow down, listen to the Scriptures line by line, asking the Father, Son, and Spirit to help us see and experience the stories of the Bible. We share and it’s so good, what the Spirit gives us. After we’ve slowly passed through a portion of Scripture, we ask each other, “What was your favorite part?” We listen to each other; then we turn our favorite parts into prayers, asking Jesus to make His Word come alive in us as we trust Him in our everyday lives.
While this practice of being face to face with God and each other in Christ has been a blessing for our discipleship groups, we know we will miss these face to face encounters if we don’t communicate well about the times and places of our meetings... So, we have a new way of keeping us all up to date and connected about where and when we’re meeting and what we’re doing… it’s Church Center!
If you are a youth or youth parent, please download the Church Center app (and even if you’re not a youth, download the app… it’s a helpful way to keep track of small groups and serving on any given Sunday), then click on Groups.
Do you see your youth discipleship group?If not, click on the button below this tidings. Your leader will be sent a message to invite you into the group where you’ll receive weekly message reminders for meetings and be able to access the youth calendar. If you turn on your messages in settings, you’ll receive updates from your leaders about your groups and be able to reply to them as well.
So, with all that… let’s keep practicing good communication, both with God and each other so that we may continue to grow in Christ!
For more information or if you have an interest in joining our youth leader team, please reach out to:
Nicole Hunter (Youth Coordinator) email@example.com or (509) 670-3825
Let's Have the Sex Talk
Friday, November 10th @ 6:30
Save the Date! This November, Trinity Church will begin a conversation around the important topic of sex. And because this is not a "one and done" talk, we will continue the conversation over the next several months. The first topic is: Talking with Your Children About Sex This conversation is for the whole church - couples, singles, elders, grandparents!
Please pray for those in the Israel-Hamas War
Dearest Friends, On October 7, 2023, the Hamas breached Israel's border with Gaza, killing more than 1,500 people, injuring over 2,500, and taking over 100 hostages. Would you pause right now and pray with me the following words? Eternal God, in whose perfect kingdom no sword is drawn but the sword of righteousness, no strength known but the strength of love: Strengthen and protect those affected by the Israel-Hamas war, and so mightily spread abroad your Spirit, that all peoples may be gathered under the banner of the Prince of Peace; to whom be dominion and glory, now and for ever. Amen. If you'd like to know how to give to relief efforts, please read on. Thank you lifting up this conflict in prayer to our God who cares. The Anglican Relief and Development Fund is partnering with CMJ-USA to bring aid and support to survivors of the conflict. You can support their work with a donation to ARDF.
If you have a personal need (like a job, or housing, etc.), an event you’d like to promote, or something you’d like our church body to be aware of, you can email firstname.lastname@example.org for us to review before posting.
In August 2023, Emily was diagnosed with a brain tumor that was found incidentally during an ER visit. The tumor required brain surgery to be removed. The surgery happened Friday, September 29th. The family would be blessed by meals during this recovery time and potentially in the future depending upon further required care. Any and all help is greatly appreciated! Join the Meal Train here.
Full time RV couple, Cynthia and Roger Rumann, need winter hook-up for 43-foot fifth wheel: 11/1/23 to 3/31/24, 55 amp. electrical service, sewer and water. They are able to pay $600/month. Contact: email@example.com, (509)763-7016
Ingalls Creek Women's Retreat, Holding Space, is October 27-29. What does it mean to grow in God throughout our entire lives? Amidst all the questions, the messiness of life that can overwhelm us, and the mystery of joy that surprises us? Join us as we deepen in this wonder together, have intergenerational conversation about faith, and hold space for one another on the journey. Get more information here.