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Members celebrate 150 years of Moore’s Bridgecomment (0)

August 6, 2009

The normal attendance of Moore’s Bridge Baptist Church, Elrod, more than doubled May 17 as about 70 people gathered to celebrate the 150th anniversary of the Sipsey Baptist Association church.

In his sermon, “Some Things Never Change” based on 1 Peter 1:25, Pastor Larry Bonner pointed out how things have changed in the past 150 years like the cost of items and attitudes and one thing that never changes — the Word of the Lord.

A conversation with a longtime church member or a look at the church’s minutes from years past reveals how Moore’s Bridge Baptist has changed.

The church was organized May 11, 1859. Redmon Jones was called as the first pastor and was paid a salary of only $50 per year. Judge Sir Mayfield donated land on which to build a structure.

The current building was constructed in 1948, said 86-year-old Polly Ellis, the oldest resident member of Moore’s Bridge Baptist.

She expressed joy over the recent completion of a fellowship hall.

The church also got a new roof recently. Just two weeks before the anniversary celebration, a small tornado caused a tree to hit the roof and the new one was completed just in time for the event, Bonner said.

Moore’s Bridge Baptist also has grown numerically over the years. While presenting a plaque recognizing the church’s longevity at its anniversary service, Gary Farley, a commissioner with the Alabama Baptist Historical Commission and director of missions for Pickens Baptist Association, highlighted one revival that resulted in 30 members being added to the church.

The minutes of Moore’s Bridge Baptist reflect a change in the terminology connected to adding or losing members.  For example, a member was granted “dismission” if he or she transferred his or her letter to another church. Also new members were received by letter, “by experience” or by baptism.

Ellis said long ago, the church “turned one man out because he was dancing and would not say he was sorry.”

During the celebration, memorable moments from Moore’s Bridge Baptist’s early history were shared as church member Bama Farr read the minutes for 1859–1861.

Jerome Lewis, minister of music at Flatwoods Baptist Church, Northport, in Tuscaloosa Baptist Association, led the music for the service, which was followed by a covered-dish luncheon. (TAB)

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