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Decaturís Southside honors past, embraces futurecomment (0)

November 3, 2011

Southside Baptist Church, Decatur, celebrated its 100th anniversary Oct. 23 with the theme “Remembering the Past: Embracing the Future.”

According to Pastor Ben Hayes, the celebration recognized former staff members and reflected on the Morgan Baptist Association church’s history.

A church member offered words of greeting, followed by a response from former Pastor Joe Ray’s son, Mark. Hayes said Mark Ray presented “a great little segment” during which he talked about the church’s history. “[It was] just an excellent way to bring everyone together, thinking about the past and present,” Hayes remarked.

Former Music Director Mike Casey led the music. The 86 singers represented both current and former choir members.

Former Pastor Brooks Barkley preached on Joshua 4, delivering a challenge to the church to commit to the future.

Special recognition was given to church members who have attended Southside Baptist 50-plus years.

Two members in particular were recognized: one man who has been a member for 72 years and one woman who has been a member for 74 years.

Nancy Beasley of the Alabama Baptist Historical Commission presented a plaque to commemorate the church’s anniversary, and a representative from Congressman Robert Aderholt’s office presented an American flag.

Following the service, an “old-fashioned” lunch was served both in the fellowship hall and under an outdoor tent.

“We truly have a great opportunity to reach our community and especially our neighborhood,” Hayes said. “Our challenge is we want to reach all the people here.”

Hayes added he believes Southside is poised to be a multigenerational church, reaching out to all age groups. “We really do have a great staff with great support from our lay leaders … to truly reach out to our community,” he said.

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