Yearlong celebration marks 100th anniversary of FBC Indian Springscomment (0)
December 7, 2006
By Bethany Dye Akridge
Even though First Baptist Church, Indian Springs, celebrated its 100th anniversary Oct. 29, the celebration has really been going on all year.
Once a month for each month in 2006 leading up to the main event, former pastors and staff members, along with several visiting pastors, have spoken during church services. And over the course of the year, many former church members revisited First, Indian Springs, to reconnect with old friends and church leaders.
According to Pastor Clarke Skelton, celebrating each month enabled more people to be involved. And the Shelby Baptist Association church took advantage of the extra numbers — inviting former members to join a centennial choir, as well as fill the pews and share testimonies.
Hugh Richardson, director of missions for Shelby Association, presented a plaque in honor of the church’s anniversary, as did Lonette Berg with the Alabama Baptist Historical Commission.
Skelton delivered a challenge to the church to learn from the past and look forward to the future.
“To see how God has brought us through good times and bad times throughout the years has been a real affirmation for our church,” he said. “We can learn from the past and hope for the future, knowing it is in God’s hands. We know He has a purpose for us.”
At age 90, Annie Margaret Winslett has witnessed most of the church’s history — her parents brought her to First, Indian Springs, when she was 6 weeks old. She accepted Christ and joined the church in 1928 at age 12, and she’s been a faithful member since.
Winslett has taught Sunday School in some capacity for 50 years, instructing ages ranging from older youth to younger seniors. She now teaches the senior adult women’s class, where she discourages gossiping.
“I don’t care how old we are; we can still grow in our conduct,” Winslett said.
She said her favorite memories of First, Indian Springs, were during its high peaks, when all members gave of themselves cheerfully and without complaining.
Winslett said the biggest change in the church has occurred since Skelton came six years ago, as he has emphasized loving all Christians as brothers and sisters, whether from First, Indian Springs, or other churches.
“The decisions we make today determine who we are tomorrow and who we are in the next 100 years,” Skelton said. “We want to grow and develop more maturity, a deeper concept of service and a greater commitment to loving and sharing.”