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York-area Siloam Baptist Church marks 170 years comment (0)

October 16, 2008

In 1838, the question for members of Siloam Primitive Baptist Church in Sumter County was whether to support foreign missions as they had home missions for the past six years.

For 12 members, the answer was yes. So they broke away to form Siloam Missionary Baptist Church.

Before the 20th century began, the tiny church had survived the War Between the States, the subsequent dark days of Reconstruction and a split of its own over a heated gubernatorial campaign in the 1890s. Most of those who left, however, later returned.

Known today as Siloam Baptist, the 140-member church recently marked 170 years of serving the Lord with a homecoming celebration. Among the special guests were Margaret Ann Edmonds of the Alabama Baptist Historical Commission and Bill Ready, director of missions for Bigbee Baptist Association. Edmonds presented a commemorative plaque to the church and Ready presented a certificate.

Former Siloam pastor Bill Pope served as guest speaker. The church’s oldest member, 98-year-old Nell Woolf, was recognized with a gift, as were pianist Lynda Harwell and organist Ruth Tew. Both instrumentalists have served the church for 25 years.

After the morning services, lunch was provided for the capacity crowd. Brad Campbell, who was first ordained as a deacon at Siloam, is pastor.

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