I believe that this was presented at the dedication of the new parsonage on June 3, 1979.

The History of the New Parsonage

On Thursday evening, June 23, 1977, a cry of despair came from the Spring Grove Community of Friends, "The parsonage is on fire!" From those who gathered to see its smoldering ruins, and those who heard the cry, the same question was: "What do we do now?"

The inadequate insurance, trimmed of its deductibles and money owed on the previous year's building project came to $4,950.00. That was not even enough to build a basement. So, as we look at the present beautiful home, and the object of our meeting today, we can only say, there is no way that we can get any Glory. It all belongs to God, "It was the Lord's doing and it was marvelous in our eyes."

Guests from Emporia, Lawrence and Topeka churches shared sympathy and encouraged as we gathered in Worship services the following Sunday.

The first committee meeting was held June 29th. In those and subsequent meetings, the following alternatives were suggested: moving in an old house, double-wide trailer, prefab home, and Phil Hickman presented plans for building a house. Gerald Teague came from Kansas Yearly Meeting and encouraged us to move forward and plan for the future.

The decision was reached to have Phil Hickman from Olathe to build a basement and shell. Even that much was a strain on our faith.

The actual digging of the basement began July 25, 1977, and the concrete walls were poured the first week of August. As people began thinking of ways money could be raised, various projects emerged. The first was a garage sale at Shorty and Frances Smith's farm house.

An ice cream social was announced to be held on the church lawn, September 8th, with Amazing Grace Choice furnishing music for the evening. On the morning of September 7, just a day before, Phil Hickman's crew of five arrived and started construction. When the faithful Prayer Warriors arrived Wednesday evening, three sides of the house and garage were erected, including the windows! By the time the crowd began gathering for the ice cream social on Thursday, the house was standing for all to see! That was a gracious beginning, people gave generously, the choir sang beautifully, and the 200 people rejoiced enjoying more than 30 gallons of homemade ice cream, and a table full of cakes.

As in Nehemiah's day, "The people had a mind to work!" The following projects were held in fund raising:

Young people participating in a walk-a-thon, and selling more than 3,000 candy bars,
Everybody helping with garage, sidewalk, and bake sales,
Taking orders for decorated cakes,
700 cookbooks sold.

We give thanks and praise to God who inspired:

Business people
Friends churches of Mid-America Yearly Meeting
MAYM Outreach Board
whom all gave substantially toward the building fund.

We gratefully acknowledge our indebtedness to:

Our contractor, Phil Hickman for the house plan, and sacrificial time and labor invested on our behalf;
Amazing Grace Choir for sharing their time and talents in several concerts;
Contractors of finish jobs: cabinets, sheetrock, electrical, plumbing, sidewalks, carpeting, and heat pump installation;
American State Bank for loans to members and attendees and friends for donations of doors, storm windows and doors;
And many hours of donated labor in: moving rock, trees and dirt, painting and papering walls, finishing doors, cabinets, and woodwork.

Our pastor moved into the new parsonage May 23, 1978, just eleven months after the first. The first overnight guests in the basement were girls from the Friends Bible College singers, one month later.

sgmm.org  |  springgrovemeeting.org  |  Site Map