|Brief History||Known Ministers||1800's||1930's||1940's||50's & 60's||1970's||1980's||1990's|
Taken from "History of Mt. Vernon United Methodist Church 1874 - 1996 Compiled by Philip R. Francis an outgrowth of the work of Dorothy Brock
Mt. Vernon Church was dedicated August 14, 1874. Before the Church was built, we had circuit riders. In the early times, communion, marriages, baptisms, funerals, etc. were "on hold" until he came through. There were two entrances to the church building; the men went in the southern entrance, and the ladies in the northern entrance.
The Ladies Aid organized in 1904. Electricity was installed in 1936; the basement was put in during 1939. A six-room house, full basement and garage was built in 1955-1956. The men of the church organized in 1956. United Methodist Women held their first basement sale in 1967. United Methodist Men served their first ham and bean supper on January 18, 1969. This was the forerunner of the current Sausage and Pancake Supper. A new addition with two restrooms and storage cupboards was completed March 21, 1982.
In 1988, the men took the responsibility of Host Church for the Self Help Tractor Drive across the state of Illinois. A benefit supper served 200 people and $1,200 was collected to help build factories and to train native people of Ghana and other underprivileged countries.
On September 10, 1990, Mt. Vernon voted to put a new addition on the church front. The Narthex was completed December 15, 1990. A handicapped-accessible bathroom and all-purpose room were added in 1997.
In 1999, the Betty Howard Estate gift enabled remodeling and renovation of the sanctuary. Stained glass panels were donated in memory of W. Stanley Wood and William Wood. Pews were purchased from a church in Iowa. The Dedication took place in combination with the 125th Anniversary celebration on August 15, 1999.
Record of Known Ministers and Early Circuit Riders from 1874
John A. Brittingham
1844 & 1845
John L. Green
|J.C. Rucker||1848 (finished year)|
|Marquis D. Hawes||1870|
|H.S. Tryon||1873 to 1875|
|Joseph L. Long||10-8-1876 to 9-24-1879|
|William Mitchell||10-1-1879 to 9-1881|
|Salem Hedges||9-1881 to 9-1883|
|James Muirhead||9-1883 to 9-1886|
|J.O. Denning||9-1886 to 9-1887|
|H.S. Tryon||9-1887 to 9-1889|
|Thorton Clark||9-1889 to 9-1890|
|J.O. Collins||9-1890 to 9-1891|
|W.A. Boyd||9-1891 to 9-1892|
|Clarence Reed||9-1892 to 9-1895|
|E.K. Towle||9-1895 to 9-1896|
|Thomas F. Pierson||9-1896 to 9-1897|
|J. Wesley Miller||9-1897 to 9-1900|
|A.M. Donley||9-1900 to 9-1902|
|J.S. Bicknell||9-1902 to 9-1905|
|R.E. Mathis||9-1905 to 9-1907|
|Fred L. Cook||9-1907 to 9-1908|
|John B. Martin||9-1908 to 9-1909|
|R.S. Eggleston||9-1909 to 9-1910|
|H.C. Augustus||9-1910 to 9-1912|
|P.G. Batty||9-1912 to 9-1913|
|R.O. Wyland||9-1913 to 9-1915|
|J.H. Singleton||9-1915 to 9-1919|
|C.R Morris||9-1919 to 9-1921|
|Charles Pitch||9-1921 to 9-1922|
|F.M. Harry||9-1922 to 9-1925|
|A. Ray Mangus||9-1925 to 9-1926|
|Fred W. Schwarziose||9-1926 to 9-1927|
|Robert B. Wilson||9-1927 to 9-1930|
|Gordon White||9-1930 to 9-1931|
|Walter G. Batty||9-1931 to 9-1933|
|S.H. Hoar||9-1933 to 9-1934|
|C.V. Lanius||9-1934 to 9-1935|
|Kenneth C. Knox
(Mt. Vernon & Savoy)
|9-1935 to 9-1938|
|Richard Muhleman||9-1938 to 6-1940|
|Marshall Williams (served during vacation)||6-1940 to 9-1940|
|George Waggoner||1940 to 9-1941|
(conference year began in June 1942)
|9-1941 to 6-1942|
|Edwin Bissell||6-1942 to 9-1942|
|Walter Smith||9-1942 to 7-1943|
|Robrt M. Parris||7-4-1943 to 6-1945|
|Keith Irwin||6-24-1945 to 6-1947|
|Robert A. Salser||6-1947 to 6-5-1949|
|William W. Richardson||6-19-1949 to 9-1-1950|
|Gordon Waggoner (Retired)||9-1-1950 to 6-8-1952|
|Martin Ruch, Jr. (Naval Chaplain)||6-15-1952 to 6-7-1953|
|Gardner Wyman (serves during vacation)||6-21-1953 to 8-23-1953|
|Melvin Funk||9-26-1953 to 6-1957|
|Paul Koester||9-1957 to 6-1959|
(Mt. Vernon & Faith)
|6-1-1959 to 6-1-1960|
(Mt. Vernon & Mayview)
|6-1-1960 to 6-1964|
|Harry A. Foss||8-1964 to 10-2-1966|
|Frank Phifer||10-2-1966 to 6-15-1969|
|C.C. Nording (Retired)||6-22-1969 to 6-15-1972|
|Michael Eischen||7-30-1972 to 6-15-1975|
|Bernadette Jeffers||6-29-1975 to 7-1977|
|Patricia Carper (Supply)
(Mt. Vernon & Faith)
|7-1977 to 10-1977|
|Carl Sebens (Supply)||6-15-1978 to 6-1-1980|
|David D. Shoemaker||6-8-1980 to 6-13-1982|
|Dwight Olsen (Supply)||6-17-1982 to 7-25-1982|
|Paul B. Wier||8-1-1982 to 6-17-1984|
|Wendy Guion||6-24-1984 to 6-30-1989|
|Barbara Zwetz||7-1-1989 to 6-15-1990|
|Camilla Hempsted||6-21-1990 to 9-15-1992|
|Margaret Foutch||10-4-1992 to 6-25-1995|
|Dottie Nickell||7-2-1995 to 6-28-1998|
|Charles Wheeler (Supply)||7-5-1998 to 8-9-1998|
|Nancy Wofford||8-16-98 to 5-27-2001|
|Jane Ferguson||6-24-2001 to April 2003|
|Liz Reis||April 2003|
Taken from "History of Mt. Vernon United Methodist Church 1874 - 1996 Compiled by Philip R. Francis an outgrowth of the work of Dorothy Brock
Mt. Vernon Church, Hensley Township, Champaign County Illinois, was dedicated August 14, 1874.
It was formerly part of the township called West Urbana. Then it was organized and called
Hensley in honor of A.P. Hensley, "the first supervisor". He was the grandfather of Earl and Olive Hensley; she was organist (played the old pump organ) for many years. Some of the early settlers were the Hammer Bros, Fountain Busey, John Phillippe Sr., Charles Miner, William Fisher and others. In 1855, the railroad was completed and the immigrants came pouring in. Hezekiah Phillippe had a two-story log home on the northwest corner of 2400N and 675E. Also at this location was a three story high wind operated grist mill and elevator for storing of grain. This is where all the local people brought their grain for grinding. Hezekiah was a son of John Phillippe Sr. and helped start the Mahomet Methodist Church. A sister, Catherine Pancake, helped start Shiloh Methodist Church. Shiloh was known as Pancake's Point in early times after an early settler, William Pancake. The Phillippes were of Huguenot extraction from France. Lutherans in Pennsylvania, Virginia and Ohio, they became Methodists in Illinois because the circuit rider was Methodist. Before the church was built, we had circuit riders. In 1841, services were started and held regularly in the log cabin of John Phillippe, Sr. which was built in 1836 at what is now the intersection of county roads 2400N and 700E. That was Harry and Bert Phillippe's grandfather and Mary Arbuckle's Great Great Grandfather (Charles Arbuckle's Great Great Great Grandfather).
The first circuit rider was Rev. Brittingham. In the early times communion, marriages, baptisms, funerals, etc. were on hold until he came through. The first preaching in Hensley township was 1844 in the home of John Phillippe, Sr. Then they began building school houses, and services were held in Liberty School which was located on the Walter Reese farm and that farm is owned by John T. Ehler. That is the NE corner of County Roads 1000 East and 2200 North. This school was later moved to the southwest corner of County Roads 2200N and 900E and name changed to Mt. Vernon School. It has now been converted to a residence at that location. People began to feel more and more, the need of a building they could dedicate to God's service. Sarah Phillippe Buckles, Hezekiah Phillippe's niece gave an acre of ground for the church in 1872. Her husband was Wiley Buckles. This was a busy time for the leaders of the community to make plans for the building and to raise the money. The country was sparsely settles and money was scarce. On January 4th, 1874, a meeting of the board of trustees was held. Those present were David King (chairman), James Wright, Walter Reese, C.F. Strahlie, M.G. Coyner, Mr. Yexley and Mr. B.F. Jones. The firm of Hubbard, Biddle and Miller built the church. The cost was $3,171.41. There were two entrances, the men went in one entrance (south) and the ladies in the other (north). The pews had a center partition.
We have no records from the dedication until 1877, other than the date in the belfry of 1874. About this time the Mt. Vernon society circuit was formed by Rev. Reed of Champaign. This circuit was composed of Rising Sun School, Dunham School, Parks Chapel, Beulah Chapel and Mt. Vernon Church. By 1909, the circuit was listed as Mt. Vernon and Beulah. It's interesting to note in the early records that all residences are listed as the distance from Mt. Vernon or Beulah (i.e. Allen, Joseph, M married, 2 miles south of Mt. Vernon; Allen, Mrs. Henry and family, Mt. Vernon, 2 miles SE). The first wedding held in the church was November 7, 1877. It was John H. Crouch & Harriet French. The pastor was Joseph Long (the first pastor after a list of circuit riders). The first baptism records were for the adults Ahi Nelson, Mary Ann Baker and Benjamin McCoy in July, 1880. Morning services were held at the church but afternoon services were held at Rising Sun and Dunham School houses and Beulah Chapel near Rantoul.
Mr. and Mrs. D.A. Phillippe presented the church with its first organ. The cost was over $700. Mrs. Phillippe played the organ for many years. The kerosene lights were replaced by acetylene. Revival meetings were held and lasted for weeks. Sunday School conventions were held. The ladies aid organized in 1904 at the Mrs. Dan Banner home, she was mother of Miss Edith M. Banner and Mrs. Effie Church and lived one mile north of the double curves in the Fisher-Dewey road. Mrs. Ida Dell Nelson was the first president. The Epworth League was organized. It was the only place in the community where young people could gather. This included children of the local families and the hired help.
1935 - Every summer the ladies aid had an ice cream social, that's hand cranked ice cream.
At the one in 1935 they had 17 1/2 gallons of ice cream and 17 cakes. This was a hot July day and they didn't come out even on the servings. Someone served much too big servings of ice cream and it was gone before the cake. They figured a cake cut at least 12 pieces. That would be 204 pieces of cake and a gallon of ice cream should serve at least 20 servings. That would be in the neighborhood of over 300 dishes of ice cream. And they ran out of ice cream before the cake as gone! How did they do that?
1936 - Times were hard and the Ladies Aid felt like it would be cheaper for each member to give 25 cents to the treasury instead of having a social. Sugar was 5 cents a lb. and came in cloth sacks. Salt came in cloth sacks too, also 5 cents a lb. peaches were one dozen cans for $1.25.
Electricity was installed this year. A typical electric bill was $8.41.
1937 - When the Ladies Aid Society was ready for the ice cream social this year, there came such a downpour of rain, high wind and lightning that nobody came. Four days later they had another ice cream social. We wonder what they did with the ice cream and cake in the meantime?
There were many of the early leaders at Mt. Vernon who should have been mentioned. A few that have been called to my attention are Mrs. Robert (Eva) Downs, Fred Warner, Ray Brock, Frank Andrew, all of whom were Sunday School superintendents for many years. Then there was Rolla Leigh who was known as the singing farmer.
Dorothy and Ray Brock were married in 1937 and settled where Ray had just moved (and still lives today).
1939 - A basement was much needed item by this time. Several thought it could not be done because of the drainage problem. Our pastor Rev. Richard Muhleman, a young student minister, appointed committees who studied the problems and in 1939 the basement was put in. During that time services were held in the Hensley Town Hall. T.J. Knott was treasurer of the building committee. The men all worked hard to complete this project. One of the entrances (north) was closed. The old stove in the back of the sanctuary was discarded and a coal furnace was installed in the basement. The acetylene lights were replaced with electric lights this year as rural electrification became available.
April 13, all Church members and friends family pictures were taken, after Much planning starting in February with committee meetings. We also worked hard trying to get old-time pictures suitable for the Centennial Book and also took pictures of Mt. Vernon today. 90 days was the allotted time. The First Centennial Cookbooks went on sale in April by the United Methodist Women's Group. Over 300 were sold by August 11th and we made 105 more. After the Centennial we sold them for $2.25.
Two hundred forty Centennial invitations were sent out in July. The basement floor and ceiling were painted in August. Centennial attire was worn the Sunday before. August 11th was Centennial Day because August 14th (The Day) was in the middle of the week. The day was hot and humid. The Sanctuary was beautiful with flowers given by Fritz Flower Shop - Basket, Abbott's Florist - Altar Flowers, Directors and Employees of Commercial Bank - Basket. Mr. & Mrs. Seely Johnston - Bouquet of red roses. Several letters were received. Mrs. Edith Shook contributed $100 in memory of Walter, Nellie and Harris Ehler. Mrs. Robert Downs gave $100 in memory of Robert Downs, Curtis Brock and Friends. Mr. and Mrs. Leslie Mitchell had a $100 Trust Fund at the Dewey Bank in memory of Hal & Ida Dell Nelson. Dr. Dale Pitcher, District Superintendent gave $50 to the Memorial Fund. Mr. & Mrs. Seely Johnston gave a Centennial Plaque to the Church.
Four Sunday School classes were filled to capacity. Dr. Dale Pitcher had the sermon for the morning services. Miss Debbie Funk, daughter of Melvin and Francis Funk (Former Minister & Wife) played a violin special number for the morning service. Well filled baskets made our dinner plentiful. Tables were set up outside with a table or two inside for those who could not climb steps. The rain held off until dinner was over. There was standing room only for the afternoon program at 2 P.M. 241 signed the Guest Book. Former ministers attending were Rev. Melvin Funk & Family, Rev. Richard Muhleman & Family, Dr. & Mrs. Clarence Nordling. The sanctuary was decorated as to the old and the new. The north side had the old organ which Mary (Phillippe) Arbuckle had purchased and had repaired, old lamps, pictures, old pulpit and the amen comer (Clarence Reed, Frank Andrew, Berl Wilson). The south side had the new organ, new pulpit and floral arrangements. Mrs. Mary Arbuckle played the pump organ for afternoon singing as did Rose Andrew on the new Baldwin organ.
WCIA TV Station (Channel 3) took pictures and showed them three times.
Ray Brock-Master Of Ceremonies.
Hymn - God of Grace and God of Glory-Rose Andrew, Organist Prayer Of Invocation
Our Church Today: Songs By The Junior Department: Solo- Steve Berry Songs By Youth And Young Adults Accompanied By Alvin Brock (Guitar).
Introduction of Former Ministers and Families and Old
Timers - Ray Brock and Dorothy Wilson.
An Original Poem - Written And Read By Dorothy Wilson "The Church At The Crossroads"
Old Favorite Hymns - Played On Old Organ By Mary Arbuckle/Sung By Congregation.
New Favorite Hymns - Played On New Organ By Rose Andrew.
Prayer Of Benediction - Dr. Dale Pitcher.
Hymn - "God Be With You Till We Meet Again" Mary Arbuckle, Organist.
Part of the afternoon group had to sit outside and it started to rain just before the close. Speaker system was hooked up both outside and in the basement. The history picture books sold for $2.00. The centennial plates the U.M. Women had made-up sold for $3.00. Mrs. Roy Trotter worked hard to get a suitable picture for the plate and to approve their drawing of it for the plate. We ordered 144. Sausage supper cleared over $600.
In 1974 we started potluck suppers instead of hosts for the board meetings. They were held just when needed. The last of the year they were held at 7:30 and no food. No one attended the Methodist Mens Layman's Retreat at East Bay Camp, the first time in years. 78 attended the annual Sunday School wiener roast. The men held their breakfast regularly on the 3rd Sunday of the month. Have good attendance and interest.
The semi-annual WSCS Basement Sale was October 17 & 18th, gross receipts of $550.66.
Marriages in 1974 were: Vincent Powell & Jane Jones, Louis Lindsey & Esther Blum, David Sherman & Mary Taggert at the Bethany Park Christian Church Disciples of Christ at Rantoul, Dennis Neef & Lillian Sherman (Flood), Norman Desrosies & Nancy Seamon, Michael Rexroad & Debra Sapp, Michael Woodruff & Catherine Carr, Paul Andrew & Maureen Perryman, (1st since centennial in Mt. Vernon), Robert Sherman & Donna Nicholes at the Farmer City Methodist Church, Courtland Tomes & Paula Ann Schmittag, Roger Cathey & Jannalesa Knowles.
We had no deaths and only one birth: Joshua Wayne Cathey. John Arbuckle's purchased the 1951 organ for $300 and gave it to their daughter Sarabess Fink.
No manger scene due to energy crisis again.
1975 - Charge conference (101 attended) jointly with Mayview at Mayview, January 12th. Rev. Michael Eischen to come back another year.
January 18th the 7th Annual Sausage and Pancake Supper was served by the United Methodist Men. The men cut up 3 hogs on Friday and rendered lard at Ray Brock's. Made patties Saturday morning. $2.25 for adults, $1.00 for 6 to 12 year olds, under 6 free. Made clear over $900.
Air conditioning put in the church February 1975. Mr. & Mrs. Ray Brock paid $695 to have it installed and the compressor. Dr. McCulley (dentist) gave the air conditioner unit to the church.
Evangelism meeting at the church March 2nd. Alvin Brock chairman. Different teams called on members and non-members. March 16 - while Rev. Mike Eischen was at camp, the Meneley Quartette had charge of services. Steve Litts organized a choir of adults and they gave special numbers through Easter (March 30). Men of the church painted the parsonage on the outside May 17th.
The WSCS Semi-Annual Basement Sale was held April 17 & 18th, gross receipts of $477.72.
Bible School June 9-13th, very good attendance and help. Program June 13th.
Babies baptized lst 6 months under Rev. Eischens ministry: Joshua Wayne Cathey, Karen Sue Neef. Marriages: Charles Ehler & Renny Barker, (member) Carol Koch Vollmer & Rick Houser. At Mahomet Church, Bruce Cunningham & Debra Lyme Miller. Members from membership class were Sarah and Steven Berry, Lisa Darling, Craig Drennen, Arthur Morphy and Laura Norris. The conference sent Rev. Michael Eischen to Ludlow and associate pastor to Paxton. We had a farewell supper for Mike and Marcia June 14th. Gift (minister robe) Mike preached last sermon June 15th. District Supt. did not supply us with a minister for June 22nd. At 11 o'clock we learned of this and Lay Leader Ray Brock took charge with mainly a songfest.
Rev. Bernadette Jeffers preached her first Sunday June 29th, 1975 at Mt. Vernon Church and Faith Church in Champaign, we are sharing Rev. Jeffers with Faith as their associate minister and our regular minister. She is living in the parsonage. A reception was held July 13th at Mt. Vernon Church with Faith Church as guests. She was formerly a director of religious education and recreation by special appointment at the Woolrich United Methodist Church at Woolrich, Pennsylvania.
The WSCS Semi-Annual Basement Sale was held October 16 & 17th, gross receipts of $571.55.
Marriages beside those mentioned were: Ronald Manual & Cheryl Severins. Non-Members married in Mt. Vernon Church were Michael McCulley & Jane Koski; Richard Allen & Rosemary Silva.
The manger scene was put up in December, first time in a while.
1976 - Bicentennial Year. The 8th Annual Sausage and Pancake Supper served on the third Saturday of January the 17th, by the United Methodist Men. Real big success after so much snow and cold weather. Had orders for over 100 lbs. of sausage but did not have it.
The United Methodist Men purchased 2 new tables and the Ladies Group and Men purchased 3 tables and 40 chairs from Capital Records. The United Methodist Women purchased a new piano for the Sanctuary, $500 plus delivery charge. Mrs. John (Connie) Benson was Choir Leader and did a wonderful job with special music, etc. Bicentennial signs "Go To Church" purchased by United Methodist Men. No special 102nd Anniversary, but in July the Mt. Vernon-Faith Churches had a union Bicentennial Picnic at Mt. Vernon Church, around 100 attended. Homemade ice cream and all three couples celebrating their 50th Anniversary in 1976: Clarence & Mary Reed-Feb; Art & Opal Miner-July, Russell & Ola Winterbottom-Dec.
The WSCS Semi-Annual Basement Sale was held April 13 & 14th, gross receipts of $420.32.
Weddings: Terry Andrew & Patricia Schlorff At First Methodist Church Of Champaign, Harold Clow & Mica Bundy (Non-Member), Scott Jones & Elizabeth Rhomberg, Steve Winters & Sandra Heiser, Harley Wiegal & Linda Lindsay, Gerry Walker & Barbara Cromex (no connection-liked country church).
Rev. Jeffers attended camp for 1 week in June-July. 2 weeks vacation in July. Jack Newsome filled pulpit while she was gone. $20 given to Memorial fund from Jones wedding. New American and Christian Flags were purchased by United Methodist Men and Women. Two new babies: John Russell Arbuckle (Charles & Sue Arbuckle), Lisa Jeanette Cunningham (Bruce & Debra Cunningham).
The WSCS Semi-Annual Basement Sale was October 21 & 22nd, gross receipts of $311.99.
Men's Breakfast at 7:30 A.M.(3rd Sunday) instead of 7 A.M.
No nativity scene due to lack of interest.
Hand rails were put along all steps inside and out by Methodist Men.
1977 - real cold January 15th with lots of snow. Had good night for the 9th Annual Sausage and Pancake Supper served by the United Methodist Men. Took in over $700. Had orders for over 100# of extra sausage but didn't have any. Sunday School and church called off January 30th due to blocked roads and cold weather. Church bowling and pizza party enjoyed by old and young. No membership class held.
Semi-Annual WSCS Basement Sale was March 31 & April 1st, gross receipts of $418.02.
Bernadette Jeffers was sent back to us at conference time June 12, 1977. She took a youth group from Faith Church to South Carolina as a work group for 2 weeks. Jack Newsome supplied the pulpit those 2 Sundays. Bernadette preached July 3rd and went on 3 weeks vacation. Mt. Vernon-Faith annual picnic was July 10th - 40 from Mt. Vernon and 61 from Faith (hot). July 17th it was announced that Bernadette Jeffers was to be sent to Easton, IL to supply one charge there. Farewell at Faith Church for her was August 7th. Mt. Vernon gave her a bible and address book. August 21st farewell for Pete and Pat Woods who are moving to Florida. Gave them a purse to buy a tree or shrub for their new home. The following persons preached until we were appointed a full time minister. Rev. Francis W. Samuelson July 24th and 31st; Norin McGrath August 7th; Bob Waters August 14th; associate lst Church Champaign August 21st. Dr. Dale Pitcherd (DS) August 28th; Pat Carper September 4th; Henry Foss September 11th; Pat Carper September 18, 25th, October 2, 9 & 16. Pat was appointed by DS on October 16th. Still associated with Faith Methodist Church in Champaign.
October 23 & 24th was the WSCS Semi-Annual Basement Sale, gross receipts of $341.71.
September 25th Annual Sunday School and Church Wiener Roast, 41 there. Back of Church paneled and new door. Methodist Men's Meetings well attended in 1977, 3rd Sunday morning of each month. Pat Carper had to finish her pastoral schooling. December llth Larry Grogle was substitute while she was gone. Christmas Program December 18. Sandwiches and salads served.
Marriages in 1977: Jack Cunningham & Colleen Francis, Robert Hasto & Edith Rayburn, Tom Rayburn & Vicki Maisel.
1978 - The 10th Annual Sausage and Pancake Supper was held January 21, the third Saturday by the United Methodist Men. Netted over $800, sold over 100, 2-lb. packages of sausage.
Pat Carper started the year with a potluck after church for the Board Meeting, several attended, Mary Arbuckle (Chairman). The second one (March) was not as successful. Easter (March 26) Sunday was postponed because of sleet and snow. We had everything April 2nd. Sunrise Service and breakfast, 54 for breakfast. The MYF did a fine job with Sunrise Services. Young adults had wonderful breakfast. Board Meeting had a supper in May, very few there. Meetings without food lst Sunday night of each month.
WSCS Semi-Annual Basement Sale April 9 & 10th, gross receipts of $378.43. May 12th First Mother and Daughter Banquet. Around 90 there.
On June 4th Rev. Pat Carper announced that she would be leaving in 2 weeks. Due to dissatisfaction with no one living in the parsonage and the combination of country and city church not working out. She was assigned to the Sadorus-Parkville charge. Farewell for Rev. Carper was held Saturday night June 17th. Gift of money to buy books she wanted. Her last Sunday was June 18th. No membership class in 1978.
Carl Sebens was appointed to Mt. Vernon June 7th but he had to give 2 weeks notice at his work, elevator at Manhatten, IL. Carl and Carol Sebens moved into the parsonage June 24th. (Ray, Alvin & Mike Brock, Don Munds, Joe Rayburn & Gary Darling moved them). June 25th was his lst Sunday. He had a prior obligation as Camp Counselor at Jensen Woods Camp. Thomas Mervidoth, Lay Leader preached July 2nd. Larry Gnagey preached July 16th while Carl Sebens Attended school to get his license to preach. Rev. and Mrs. Sebens was assigned to Mt. Vernon as a Lay-Minister.
The Mt. Vernon-Faith Picnic was held July 9th even though we no longer were associated with them. There were 30 from Mt. Vernon and more from Faith after 3 years association. Pete and Pat Woods moved back to Thomasboro from Florida in July.
Mt. Vernon has been blessed with wonderful organists for some time. Connie Benson very talented Organist, Pianist and Choir Leader has helped us to have wonderful special music on all occasions. Other Organists are Joan Neef, Rose Andrew, Sharon Witherbeee, Mary Arbuckle and Berenice Jones as substitute. Wednesday nights are dedicated to choir practice for both the Junior Choir and Senior Choir. Rev. and Mrs. Sebens entertain the Junior Choir while the Senior Choir is practicing. Rev. Sebens gives his Junior Sermon then instead of Sunday morning, went back to Children Sermon on Sunday Morning.
C.A.R.E. Was the special emphasis in 1978. This is a special period for camp and retired ministers. The every member canvas was conducted at that time also. The Semi-Annual WSCS Basement Sale was held September 30 & October lst, gross receipts of $645.44. Net proceeds were given to the trustees to be used for the upkeep of the building. The United Methodist Women and Men shared the expense of a new piano for the basement. It was much needed. Rev. Sebens, Charles Sherman & Alvin Brock built and carpeted a platform for it. We have a junior and senior M.Y.F. that are quite creative. Joan Neef and Gary Darling, Ruth Brock and Marilyn Schillinger are CoSponsors.
Weddings in 1978 were David Steiner & Debra Schultz, Scott Francis & Candace Dalton at Allerton Park Garden, Martha Sherman & Steve Buhr at Immanuel Lutheran Church of Flatville.
We were saddened by the death of Colleen Koch and Terry Andrew. The Christmas Program was held December 17th at 5 P.M. with salad and sandwiches afterward. The music was wonderful and the Junior Choir did a wonderful job. Joan Neef at the organ and Connie Benson at the piano. Candlelight and communion services on Christmas Eve was well attended and a spiritual experience to prepare us for the close of the year. December 31st was quite icy and only 2 families at church.
1979 - January was a snow filled month with no Sunday School or Church on January 14th & 28th. January 20th was the llth Annual Sausage & Pancake Supper. The weather was with us and the supper was a success. The other organizations besides The United Methodist Men served the Busboom Farm Sale the same Saturday. Over $567 was cleared. The Men's Breakfasts are still the 3rd Sunday of the month, unless a conflict, then its the 2nd at 7:30 A.M. May is the month the Ladies are guests of the United Methodist Men, they doing all the cooking and serving. The United Methodist Women's Meeting was called off in February due to bad weather. March 2nd we were host Church to 8 other churches for the World Day of Prayer. They were Fisher, Shiloh and Foosland Methodist; East Bend and Dewey Mennonites; Fisher Baptist; Fisher and River Valley Churches of Christ. Marianne Pittman from Champaign was the guest speaker. 60 people attended a wonderful inspirational program. The United Methodist Women's Meeting is still the 2nd Thursday of the month. An Easter Sunrise Service and breakfast was held in April, 70 Attended. Board meetings were held the lst Sunday of the month at the parsonage, especially during the winter months.
Sixteen adults attended the American Passion Play at Bloomington in May. The MYF and leaders served a lunch at The National Peony Show at the Klehm Nursery in May.
Rev. Carl Sebens was Camp Leader at Jensen Camp. Mike Brock and Mike Berry attended this camp. Judith Kay Stewart attended East Bay Camp. Two were confirmed, Michael Berry and Michael Brock.
The WSCS Spring and Fall Semi-Annual Basement Sales were held as usual, gross receipts for the Spring Sale were $556.15 and the Fall Sale $701.55. The profits were used in helping with the budget and upkeep of the Church.
Clarence Reed passed away March 25. There was $214 in Memorials and his name was added to the Memorial Plaque. Tommy Knotts name was added to the Memorial Plaque after several years. A pulpit chair was purchased with Clarence's money by his family.
The annual Sunday School picnic was July lst at the close of Bible School and was poorly attended. The Annual Wiener Roast on September 30th was poorly attended.
Weddings of Church Members and Weddings at Mt. Vernon Church Were: Leslie Zimmerman & Anna Mae Hughey (friends that liked the country church), Sandia Shields & Richard Fitton (Sandia joined the Catholic Church), Mark Jones & Vickie Christason.
Babies Born in 1979 Were: Tamsen Marie Cunningham, daughter of Bruce & Debbie Cunningham and Angela Nicole Neef, Daughter of Dennis & Lillian Neef.
A large picture of Christ at Hearts Door was put in the front of the Sanctuary, a gift of the Gene Neef Family. The Junior and Senior Choirs are quite an addition to the services under the direction of Connie Benson.
Howard and Berenice Jones celebrated their 50th Anniversary at the Church in September (Anniversary September 3rd).
Retired Chaplain Martin Ruck Jr. and his wife, a former minister of Mt. Vernon Church visited Mt. Vernon services on their way to Washington, D.C. for 2 years Work before returning to California. Layman's Day October 14th.
No one attended the Methodist Men's Retreat because of a change at the last minute to Lewiston instead of East Bay.
The young adult couples group sponsored a Halloween party for the church. It was quite a success.
The Christmas program was held December 16, with a live baby, Angela Neef as baby Jesus. Her parents portrayed Mary and Joseph. The choirs were beautiful. Sandwiches and salads were served afterwards. Wonderful fellowship. Candlelight services were held on Christmas Eve.
Dr. Harold Lloyd is the new District Superintendent, Reverend Carl Sebens minister.
May 13: Hymnal Dedication, Supplemental hymnals were presented to Mt. Vernon United Methodist Church, to the glory of God and for service in this congregation, in loving memory of Sally Cunningham, Velda Manuel, Shirley Rayburn and Dorothy Wilson.
May 20: Mother's Day Breakfast was hosted by the United Methodist Men.
Celebration of Graduation Worship and Fellowship Luncheon We recognized all of our graduates during the morning worship service. This year's graduates are: Lisa Cameron, Jeff Graham, Katie Manuel and Teresa Sherman (Jr. High), Taylor Cook and Tony Sherman (High School), Andrew Granade and Nancy Wofford (graduate school). A potluck luncheon will follow worship to honor the graduates and to say "good-bye" to Pastor Nancy Wofford.
May 27: Was Pastor Nancy Wofford's last Sunday at Mt. Vernon
June10: Joy and Andrew Granade Day! A Sunday to express our appreciation for the many blessings Joy and Andrew have brought to Mt. Vernon. Following the worship service a pot luck was held in their honor. Andrew has been invited to present a paper at the Second Biennial International Conference on 20th Century Music in London. In addition, Joy has been selected to perform in The Magic Flute, in Austria this summer.
June 24: Rev. Jane Ferguson's first Sunday at Mt. Vernon
It All Began On September 4, 2001... On this date, for the first time in our denomination's history, the United Methodist Church was on most major cable networks throughout the United States. Schedule available on-line at:
October 6: Jennifer Bartell and Robert Biehl were married at Mt. Vernon Church
Baptism of Elizabeth Anne Rients: The Mt. Vernon family to witnessed and celebrated the Baptism of the newest member of the Rients-Ferguson family Sunday, October 14th during the worship hour.
Family Picnic - Hayride - Bonfire: Sunday, October 14th at the home of Chuck and Sue Arbuckle.
This Fall Festival was a Church Family event and all were invited to bring a guest!
Hosting with the Arbuckles were Mike & Lia Mueller and Gary and Jan Darling.
Open House was held at the Parsonage on December 16th from 2p.m. to 4p.m.(prior to the Christmas Pageant)
Salvation Army: Our United Methodist Men have donated 100 boxes of crayons to the Salvation Army
UMM Pancake and Sausage Supper: Saturday January 19th, 2002 from 11:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.
Donations: Adults $5 per person, Children $2.50, 4 and under FREE.
Trustees Meeting: May 15th
Leaks in ceiling will be taken care of; smoke alarms and CO2 alarms will be installed in the church; Sign Committee will meet with Trustees to present proposals for new sign and flag pole in front of church; lighting cross on top of church and replacement of Historical Sign was discussed.
Graduation Recognition: Sunday May 26th
Cake and punch reception following worship as we recognize our graduates, Megan Hart, Joy Granade and Angela Neef