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Woodmont marks 50 years with ‘family reunion’comment (0)

July 21, 2011

Woodmont Baptist Church, Florence, had a 50th anniversary celebration June 11–12 that felt more like a “family reunion,” according to Frances Moore, anniversary chairwoman.

To celebrate the Colbert-Lauderdale Baptist Association church’s history, several former pastors and staff members returned to speak Saturday evening and Sunday morning and afternoon.

Jim Compton, pastor from 1975 until 1979, and Robert Foster, associate pastor from 1983 until 1990, spoke Saturday evening, and Max Gartman, music director from 1983 until 2001, led worship. Dinner followed the celebration service.

On Sunday morning, with more than 700 in attendance, Pastor Jerry Rea brought a message from Psalm 100:5 titled “Then and Now.”

He encouraged the congregation to “pass the baton” to the next generation and remember the future is as essential in God’s plan for Woodmont Baptist as its charter members were in 1961.

Lonette Berg, executive director of the Alabama Baptist Historical Commission, presented the church with a certificate, and Florence Mayor Bobby Irons shared a congratulatory message.

Sunday afternoon saw the returns of Richard Waggner, Woodmont’s first pastor; Jody Gamble, pastor from 1979 until 1986; and Jason Moore, who grew up attending the church.

After five decades of endurance, triumph and growth, one could look at Woodmont and praise the pastor or congregation, but “across time, it’s easier to see God’s work” Rea said, reflecting the message found in the church’s theme verse Psalm 100:5: “For Yahweh is good, and His love is eternal; His faithfulness endures through all generations.”

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