Religion digest: Church holds annual open house

By Tonya Fennell: CNJ staff writer

Church holds annual open house

Trinity United Methodist Church, 1320 W. 21st St., will hold its second annual open house from 2-4 p.m. Sunday.

Members and guests are invited to visit for food, fun and fellowship, according to church officials.

San Jon Church celebrates 100 years
The San Jon United Methodist Church will mark a century of ministry Sunday with special services and a barbecue dinner, according to a church news release.

The celebration will begin with a fellowship time at 9:30 a.m. in the Fellowship Hall, according to the Rev. Mary Sue Hull, pastor. The centennial worship service will begin at 10:30 a.m. under the brush arbor, then move into the sanctuary.

The public is invited to join the congregation for this special observance and dinner after worship.

The church traces its history back to 1905 when the Rev. Benjamin F. James began preaching in San Jon, holding services in the community’s few private homes and sometimes in the General Mercantile Store built by C.L. Owen, according to church historian Gerald White. A brush arbor was constructed northwest of the main part of the settlement near the location of the current arbor reproduction.

In 1906, seven homesteaders met to establish a congregation known as the San Jon Methodist Episcopal Church South, White said.

Services were held beneath the brush arbor or in a home or Owen’s store until 1912, when the first building was completed north of the present church.

The original church burned in 1921 and a new adobe building constructed the following year, which burned in 1949. Services were held in a building on Main Street owned by Clark and Fern White until the new brick church was finished at the site at the old adobe building, White said.

The Rev. Al O. Hood was pastor during construction of the new church, with the first service held March 11, 1951. The building was dedicated Aug. 26, 1951, with the Rev. Harry L. Webb as pastor.

In 1945, the Bard Church merged with San Jon and in 1951 the Porter Church joined it, according to White. In 1958, the Community Church in Wheatland disbanded and its 13 members transferred to San Jon.

The Rev. Hull was appointed the church’s 56th pastor in June.

Religion Calendar is compiled by Tonya Fennell. To add, delete or update events, please contact her at 763-6991, ext. 312, or by e-mail: tonya_fennell@