By Cara Pattison
The New Testament of the Bible describes the word “church” as the people that meet to worship, versus the place where the service is held.
And after 129 years of service and fellowship, West Point Christian Church (1600 S. Richland Road) has proven that it is indeed the dedicated people that have made this house of God withstand the test of time.
West Point Church members began meeting in 1889 shortly after the Oklahoma Land Run and several years before the church was constructed.
Settlers decided to start Sunday School classes at a common spot on the prairie near where the present-day church is built.
“According to church history, the classes were first held in homes, and eventually in a one-room sod schoolhouse,” said church board member, treasurer and pianist Charlotte Novak.
In 1894, West Point Christian Church – Disciples of Christ was officially organized. Based on historical church records, Lucy Fry was the first person to present her church letter when the call to join was issued.
As the number of members grew, church members decided to build their very own house of worship.
“Landowners Mr. and Mrs. Charles Little donated the land at SW 15th Street and Richland Road, where the church was eventually built,” Novak said.
“After construction was complete in 1898, the Brakefield family donated the church bell – which is still in use today.”
Over the past 129 years, there have been several structural additions made to the church and its grounds.
“In 1946, a youth center was dedicated in memory of Marvin Fry and Calvin Florence,” Novak added.
The fellowship hall was added in 1984 and the Family Life Center in 2015.
“The fellowship hall was made possible due to the vision of Harold and Jean Claire Lawson, as well as the hard work and contributions of many others,” Novak said.
“Its construction was under the direction of Wayne Lively. The hall has many uses today, including fellowship dinners, family reunions, celebrations, fundraisers, home school activities, wedding receptions, and baby showers.”
In 1983, member Ridge Smith’s diligent work resulted in the church being listed on the National Registry of Historic Places.
Just this summer, the church received a fresh coat of paint to spruce it up for the 129th anniversary celebration.
The community is invited to celebrate the history and heritage of these hallowed grounds at West Point Christian Church’s 129th anniversary celebration this Sunday, Sept. 10.
The worship service will begin at 11 a.m. under the direction of co-pastors Rev. Jann Johannes and Rev. Dr. Debi Powell-Maxwell.
Immediately following the service will be a reception with the theme, “Dipping into the Past, Looking Forward to the Future.”
Throughout the year, West Point Christian Church meets on Sundays for adult Sunday School at 10 a.m. and worship services at 11 a.m.
The church’s board chairman is Bonnie McDowell, and the secretary is Kristi Novak.