A History of Bethel Church of Christ
The Bethel Church of Christ was established in 1864 and worship services were conducted in the home of John Rains. A few years later the congregation moved to a building on the Jonah Clark farm located east of the Pailo community. In about 1875 a new building was erected where the congregation met until 2004.
Some of the early families who worshipped at the Bethel Church of Christ were Rains, Boyd, Walker, Greer, Clark, Ewton, and Billingsley. Some of them contributed timber from their land, which was sawed by Marvin Rains and James Walker, that was used in the construction of the new building. By this time other families assisted in the construction including Merriman, Faith, Roberson, Pope, Humble, Johnson, Standefer, Price, and Lamb. In 1881 the building burned but was rebuilt shortly after.
Andrew Billingsley is thought to have been the first preacher of the congregation, followed by James Billingsley and Claude Thurman. Over the years many men preached including John Pope, Paul Smith, and Johnny Statum. T.A. Smith and Bobby Collier hold that position today.
A new baptistery was added in 1983. A classroom and office was added in 1986. A new kitchen was built in 1997. Elders and deacons were appointed in 2003.
Just after the turn of the century the church began to grow rapidly and overflowed with numerous members. The congregation decided to address this growth in 2003 by building a new place of worship a few hundred yards from the old building on land donated by Brother Bill Staggs on U.S. Hwy 127. First services were held in the new facility in the spring of 2004.
The church celebrated its one hundred and fiftieth anniversary in 2014. We earnestly pray that God will continue to bless us as we seek and serve him.