Homecoming Service Photos
September 29, 2019
150th Church Anniversary
January 17, 2019
Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ.  Philippians 1-6
 
Highlights of the celebration thus far include:
 
HBC 150th Anniversary Commemorative Ornaments. A limited edition Christmas ornament featuring the church building was designed and sold throughout the past year. Proceeds will go to support one of two ministries – the Nasaruni Academy and the HBC Saturday Bag Lunch Program, which is celebrating its 25th Anniversary this year.
 
150th Anniversary Celebration Service January 20, 2019. Invitations were sent to former members no longer living in the area. A banner was erected announcing our anniversary year to the community. The Lynches opened their home to former and current staff for a meal Saturday evening. Former pastor and noted author Dr. Bill Tuck delivered the sermon for this service. The JMU Graduate Brass Quintet provided music along with a special choir that included former church members. Long time member Neil Showalter was interviewed by the children for the Children’s message. Rev. Withers created a slide show featuring past and present members of the church. A special work of art by Randy Shenk was unveiled and is on display in the foyer. A time of fellowship and refreshment prepared by the Hospitality Committee followed in the Fellowship Hall. There was informal recognition of people who had been members for a number of years or participated in varied programs in the church, and Patti Good took many wonderful photographs.
 
Pictures and Church History. We collected pictures from members and former members of the congregation to be used in a variety of ways, including an updating of the church history, copies of which will be available in the fall. Cathy Baugh is leading this effort. Joe Laughland and Rev. Withers have scanned many pictures. Eli has turned some of these into slide shows, which will continue to be a part of worship throughout the year. Greg Versen and Don Aittama are taking pictures of current church life, including 150th celebration activities.
 
Baptist Heritage Month. On March, 5, the Dr. Phyllis Rodgerson Pleasants Tessieri, former Richmond Baptist Theological Seminary faculty member and noted Baptist historian, delivered the message, initiating a month of focus on our Baptist heritage. Adult Sunday School classes met as a group in the Fellowship Hall to hear a series based on the book “Four Fragile Freedoms.” Greg Versen, Shirley Cobb, Dr. Tom Reynolds, Rev. Withers and Rev. T.W. Johnson helped lead these sessions. T.W also led a series for the children in Kids Alive. A field trip to Culpepper Baptist Church and other sites associated with the Baptist pioneer, John Leland, took place March 26. Fourteen people made the trip that included the site where Leland and James Madison met to discuss the independence of church and state.
 
Easter Sunday, April 21. Dr. Tom Reynolds, HBC pastor from 1983 to 2002, delivered the sermon – “Made Like Him, Like Him We Rise.”
 
Story Telling. On May 11, we gathered in the homes of Vickie Westlake and Ron and Mary Smith to share our stories – recollections of events. both lighthearted and deeply meaningful. that have been a part of our life through the years at HBC. There are many more events yet to come, including the following:
 
First Friday. On June 7,  HBC participated in Harrisonburg’s monthly First Friday art event. HBC artists Don Aittama, Patti Good, Tom Reynolds, Cameron Ritcher, Randy Shenk and Greg Versen exhibited their work in our building.
 
Oral Interviews. During the summer, we recorded oral interviews with some the older members of the church. Children and youth participated in asking the questions.
 
New Market Field Trip. The first of two local field trips (New Market, Luray and the Old Mauck Meeting House) took place July 16.
 
Community Appreciation Event. On August 2, we hosted a Community Appreciation Event featuring a pinewood derby race, treats, and the movie “Cars”, shown outdoors.
 
Corey Fields. On Sunday, August 25, Dr. Corey Fields, who grew up in HBC and was ordained here, was our guest speaker. Dr. Fields is Senior Pastor of Calvary Baptist Church in Newark, Delaware and a regular columnist in several Baptist Publications.
 
Homecoming. On Sunday, September 29, we held a Homecoming service followed by dinner on the Grounds. Dr. Fred Anderson, former head of the Virginia Baptist Historical Society delivered the message in the person of the early Baptist preacher, William Hatcher. Following the service, there was a meal, old-time entertainment and games for children. Share Your Dreams. On Saturday, October 19, we met to share our hopes for HBC. This was a bookend to our Story Telling event in May, and included music, poetry and scripture similar to our “Gather” service last fall.
 
Singers Glen Field Trip. Our second local field trip (Singers Glen, Linville and Mt. Crawford) will take place Thursday, October 24.
 
Dr. Jo Ann Stancil. On Sunday, October 27, Dr. Jo Ann Stancil, who grew up at HBC, will be speaking. Dr. Stancil is Minister of Education and Administration of Wake Forest Baptist Church and the author of numerous articles.
 
Other projects. We are working on the possibility of a book of photographs which reflect both the past year and previous years at HBC. We are also hoping to create a Timeline somewhere in the church that will be a lasting reminder of our 150 year journey and, to which events in our unfolding story can be added. Members who would like to work on these or any of the other projects described here would be warmly welcomed!
 
A Service of New Beginnings. On Sunday, January 19, we will mark the end of our 150th Anniversary Celebration year with a Service of New Beginnings. Our speaker will be John Upton, Executive Director of the Baptist General Assembly of Virginia.
 
We gratefully acknowledge financial support for the various programs of the HBC 150th Anniversary Celebration through a generous gift given in honor of Hank and Jane Bowers.