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150 year history

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Christ Through the Centuries:
A History of Central Church of Christ
Sparta, TN
1867- 2017
150
th
Anniversary Goal
To conduct a special event on September 24 to celebrate 150 years of walking with
Christ. We will thank God for His faithfulness, humbly remember our history, and anticipate
great things to come as God works with us to change lives in our community and world. Our
congregation will be strengthened in unity, fellowship and love.
2017 Elders
Les Tubb John Knox
Russ Hale Bill Oakley
Minister Christopher Wiles 2017-
2017 Central Deacons
John Adams- Buildings
Will England- Education
Ben Gardenhire-Grounds
Tony Putman-Technology
Ty Webb- Worship
Bob Young- First Steps
2017 Ministry Leaders
Tommy Blevins: Caring Jim Wallace: Mission
Richard Gravely: Primetime Dave Weber: Treasurer
Mike O’Neal: Life Jeff Haston: Technology
Patrick Lankford: Youth
Looking back into history and historical records of writings, there is appreciation for
worship held in the late 1700’s time period. One kind of worship meeting was held outdoors in
shelters known as a brush arbor. Brush Arbor meetings were held in many communities in
White county, including the community of Sparta Church of Christ (now Central Church of
Christ).
A brush arbor was set up by children believers. The structure being tree limbs and leaves
for shelter. The tree limbs would support the frame and the leaves would protect from sun and
rain.
The 1899’s found many brush arbor meetings taking place here in White County. Some
of those meetings continued until the mid-1900’s. Grandparents of today told the stories of
attending the arbor meetings. It was a period of worship and fellowship stated by the attendees.
The singing was special as it echoed across the hillsides in White County areas. Special songs
were such as “What a Friend We Have in Jesus” and “When the Role is Called Up Yonder.”
People came to the meetings by covered wagons, horseback, walking, or in a horse and
buggy. The minister would stand in front of a podium made of a tree limb and deliver his soul
searching Restoration Movement sermon to sinners. He often came from several miles to preach
in week or two week meetings. He most often traveled by horseback or buggy.
At these brush arbor meetings many people turned their lives toward salvation as stated in
the Bible - Acts 2. They received Christ as their Savior. Forgiveness, peace and love became
their daily walk.
Brush Arbor Meeting
Traveling by Wagon and Mule to church
After one accepted the Gospel call, the Calfkiller river became the most convenient place
for baptisms. Our heritage has proven
The Same Message Sam Gospel The Bible
Calfkiller River, White County, TN: Rural Churches often used the Calfkiller River for
baptism. 1800’s – 1950’s
Sparta and White County have a long and profound history of Christian believers with a
belief of “In God We Trust.” The Central congregation of believers began to worship in 1867.
There are no written records prior to the Civil War. Services were held in a school building until
1892. The building was known as Priestly Academy. It was not unusual for church members to
use a school building on the first day of the week for services in 1867. Likewise, it was not
unusual for a church building to provide school and educational purposes. This arrangement
allowed communication, service and work together and formed a basis for Christian ethics for
both young and old. However, the church was small and opposition was with prejudice. Men
such as W.D. Jordon, J.J. Trat, W.H. Hooker, W.D. Carnes and J.L. Sewell laid the foundation
for future growth after the civil war.
Priestly Academy 1867-1592
The Sparta Church of Christ stewardship purchased from the Presbyterians their interest
in regards to their worship services for $50 until 1892. Soon thereafter the church stewards
purchased a lot that is now known as North Main Street. It was a corner lot and became known
as the Sparta Church of Christ. The lot was purchased from CC Young at a cost of $1000. The
builders of the Sparta Church of Christ building is not known. However, it was constructed of
brick at a cost of $5000. The seating capacity was 500. The first sermon was the third Sunday in
March 1893 by W.H. Sutton. The church served the church membership and the Sparta
community well.
Second Church Building 1892-1926. Building Burned
For sixteen years Brother Sutton preached and held protracted meetings without a
vacation. Through the strong solicitation and earnest persuasion of the church at Sparta, TN, he
moved from Spencer to Sparta, and the church there had fellowship with him in his preaching
until his death in 1905. The church at Sparta bought a tent, and Brother Sutton went out and
preached under the tent where there were no congregations or houses of worship. Brother
Sutton, by the power and simplicity of the gospel, converted sinners to Christ, established new
congregations, and strengthened the weak churches in that county. His labors were generally
confined to White, Putnam, Warren, Van Buren, and adjacent counties. He held successful
meetings in Nashville, Chattanooga, Murfreesboro, Lebanon, Fayetteville and many other towns.
Frequently, he was called to other States, but he preferred, as he said, to preach destitute fields
where there was greater need.
In December, 1926, a fire destroyed the 1892 church building. This unfortunate event
did not keep the Sparta Church Christians from worship services. The Christians met in the
White County Court house in 1927. They were blessed by God and their needs were met. They
were dedicated in faith, work and fellowship in the Lord’s work.
It was not many months until another building replaced the previously burned 1892
building. The new building was completed in 1927 at a cost of $40,000. It was used for worship
services, funerals, weddings and other events such as fellowship and gospel meetings. This
building was built by the Lee Company whose owner was the grandfather of Central member
Jimmy Lee.
Mrs. Ruth Rhea (Pinkie) Tubb Hill remembers the first wedding in the 1927 building.
She served as flower girl in the wedding of Catherine Tubb and Robert Bell.
She also states that it was a blessing and with thankful hearts that the church contribution
reached $100 on a given Sunday. The church continued to grow in contribution and membership
of 150 persons. J.R. Tubb, Sr., W.W. Young and G.J. Spurlock served as elders. Deacons were
C.C. Young, J.D. Bronson, George Tompkins and W.M. Young. J.R. Tubb stated, “By the help
of the Lord, we hope to grow in every good work.
White County TN Court House 1884-1977
Third Church Building 1927-1965
Mr. J. R. Tubb, Sr., a member of Central Church, was a man of Christian ethics. He
learned of the need for the Black community to hear a gospel sermon. The noted Marshall
Keeble was able to hold gospel tent meetings through the efforts of Mr. Tubb. It was from the
gospel preached that the present Roberts Street Church became a meeting house for members.
Mr. Tubb also provided materials (funds) for the meeting house building.
At this time in history it was not long until banks closed, wages were limited and savings
were important. Hourly wages were sometimes no more than 25 cents to $1.00. Christians kept
the faith, prayed and remembered:
The Gospel The Message- The Bible
The Sparta Church of Christ elders, deacons and membership saw the need for a
residence for a minister to be built. A lot was purchased in 1946 from Mr. and Mrs. J.R. Tubb,
Jr. for $2500. Mr. and Mrs. Tubb were parents of Mrs. Ruth Rhea (Pinkie) Tubb Hill who holds
today the longest standing membership at Central. A nice brick home was erected on an eighty
by two hundred feet lot at a cost of $22,500. The home provided housing for church ministers
until the year 2000.
Donald Earwood, 1951, was given an opportunity to do mission work in Belgium and
France for a five year period with expense $30,000. Other areas of foreign countries include
Japan, Korea, Nigeria, Ireland, Canada and Vietnam.
The Sparta Church of Christ name was changed to Central Church of Christ 1959. This
change appeared to have met its mission by being centrally located in service to the Sparta
community and White County, TN.
The Central Church of Christ has served Sparta and White County in other aspects of
ministry. One aspect was mission work that involved the help in planting a new church in the
western section of Sparta. The mission was to move west of the Calfkiller River. The Central
Church of Christ provided membership and a minister to the West Sparta Church of Christ when
West Sparta began its congregation and worship service. Central Church of Christ became the
backbone of West Sparta membership and leadership with stewardship. John Snodgrass was one
of the elders having a strong faith. He previously was a strong member and leader of Central
Church of Christ.
Historically, Central Church of Christ has remained a church that follows Biblical
Teachings. Every year has not been perfect; however, elders, deacons and members are
reminded to be daily followers of Christ.
The Same Gospel Same Message The Bible
This past decade of Christian service to God and mankind stands in view of one hundred
fifty years of Bible sermons, lectures and gospel meetings. The number seems almost beyond
comprehension.
Children were often invited to attend a summer Bible study. This was a highlight of
summer activity. All congregations in White County held a Bible School together one year. It
was a huge success.
In the 1970’s, Brother Gordon Smith, Minister, came to White County for a tent meeting
gathering. This gospel meeting was supported by all White County Church of Christ
congregations. The location was on a large lot near the White County Fair Grounds, Sparta
Cookeville Highway. The meeting was held for seven days. Many became Christians during
this particular meeting.
1952 Central Church Budget
Home Preaching 4900.00
Janitor, Coal. Lights and Water 914.00
Sunday Scholl and VBS Literature 250.00
Supplies, Insurance and Postage 725.00
Meeting Expenses 500.00
East Tennessee Mission Work 300.00
General Mission Work 500.00
Foreign Mission Work 3000.00
Tennessee Orphan Home 400.00
Charity 625.00
Building Repair and Upkeep 500.00
West Side Building Fund 2000.00
Unforeseen 386.00
________
Total $15,000.00
The present location of Central Church was brought about by the need for additional
classrooms and parking. The leadership of dedicated stewards (elders) became a historical move
for the congregation. The purchase of more property south of the older building was
accomplished. This property is located south along North Main Street. The planning phase for
the endeavors was a three year project. It began in 1962 with completion in 1965. A goal was
accomplished!
The property in the above paragraph was purchased from Mr. and Mrs. Claude Tubb and
Rhea House owners. Along this avenue of construction were maple trees that were a great
shady spot for parking. In the mid-week days, Sparta shoppers and business owners did daily
parking. Today the church parking is used by different business owners who have a need for
daily parking. Isn’t that a service to the community of Sparta by Central Church of Christ? Isn’t
that a Christian attribute that Central Church provides?
One Nation Under God in 2011 was an open mission to areas in the Upper Cumberland
Region. Central Church contributed $50,000 to this mission work. Dr. Alan Cooper worked
with One Nation Under God efforts in local churches in White County as part of the overall
outreach to promote the Gospel across the United States and all over the world.
The Agape Home for children is located in Nashville, TN. This home is supported by
Central Church of Christ and has for many years. This home offers adoption by parents.
Happy Haven Home is located in Cookeville, TN. This home is operated by Churches of
Christ in the Upper Cumberland area. Central Church of Christ has supported Happy Haven
Home many years. The home accepts children who need care in a stabilized environment. One
can live in the Home until eighteen years of age or until high school graduation and one can
support himself or herself. Happy Haven will assist those who want to go to college.
In May 1985 several ladies from the Central Church of Christ in Sparta visited each first
Wednesday of a given month. The visit was shared with a covered dish lunch and a period of
fellowship with house parents. The visit also included sewing, mending clothes, folding clothes
and other needed chores. Central Church ladies no longer visit monthly. They support the Home
by monthly contributions.
Happy Haven Home and its leadership always have expressed their appreciation for the
support received by the eldership of the Central Church congregation.
Ruth Rhea (Pinkie) Tubb Hill and her sister, Mary Willie Smith visited Happy Haven
June 8, 1992. They reported that twelve children were living in the home. However they were
impressed by the cleanliness and finding house parents providing them with a warm welcome.
At this time two other houses would soon be ready for more children and more living for the
children. It was learned that each child had a 4H project as well as Bible study.
It was stated by Ms. Ruth Rhea (Pinkie) Tubb Hill the Social Worker reported, “The
home could not operate without the help of congregations as Central Church.
As a whole the congregation prepares meals for the elderly and sick. A food bank is
prepared by individuals who bring in pantry items for the needy and hungry citizens of White
County.
Other uses of the building are funerals, weddings, bridal showers and special meetings as
given by the elder leadership.
.
A Church Wedding 1948
The Central Church members and leadership planned for the future in 1968. It was
decided to provide three additional classrooms, an office for records, a kitchen, a room for
fellowship, Bible classes or other needs. Dr. R.B. Thurman was a long time member who held
property near the Central Church building. The year of 1987, the church added an annex north
of the present building as well as additional parking.
Central Church leaders held a vision for the future by providing better ways to serve the
congregation. The purchase of the Goff house in 1993 on the north side of College Street corner
provided additional parking and an area for youth ball exchanges.
Dr. and Mrs. Robert F. Baker heirs sold the church property. Dr. Baker was both a doctor
and business man in Sparta. He had invested in property that connected to the Central Church
property. This property lies Rhea Street and North Church Street. The lot size with a building is
0.443 acres. It was purchased by Central Church in 2014 for $70,000. The lot is a great asset.
At present, 2017, the lot is only an asset for future expansions.
Church history and historical records are important. The Bible provides great history
lessons for our learning. Perhaps the history of Central Church of Christ can provide our present
generation and future generations the purpose of records, work and what it means to mankind to
recognize.
The Same Gospel Same Message The Bible
Elders
John S. Rhea Herbert Pistol 1977-1989
Matt Tayler Kenneth Dabbs 1979-1992
Dr. A. F. Richards -1902 Bob Swindell 1980-
W.H. Sutton 1892-1905 Jim Camp 1990-1999
J. R. Tubb, Sr. 1895-1942 Fred Rascoe 1996-2000
Martin Young Curtis White 1990-2001
Harry Camp 1921-1937 Bill Oakley 1996-
Robert L. Gillen 1921-1946 Les Tubb 2000-
D.D. Bradley 1930’s -1964 James Green 2000
W.A. Walker 1939-1970 John Knox 2005-
Charles S. Meek -1964 Russ Hale 2013-
Murphy Dodson 1949-1965 Fred Rascoe 2013-2016
Barnett Powell 1960-1963 Tommy Blevins 2013-2015
Cecil Smith 1963-1980 Craig Lynn 2006-2011
Lucius Camp 1964-1970 Don England 2002-2013
Paul Howard 1964-1977
Curtis Wakefield 1964-1979
Barnett Powell 1966-1990
Ministers
W.H. Sutton, 1892-1905 Waldon Tarpley, 1958-1962
J.D. Gunn, 1905-1918 Paul W. Hall, 1962-1963
John T. Smith, 1918-1922 Olan Bassham, 1963-1968
R.L. Brooks, 1922-1924 Schumann Brewer, 1968-1981
Joe Netherland, Sr., 1924-1933 J. Brian Crow, 1981-1991
A.R. Hill, 1933-1937 Wayne Stubblefield, 1991-1999
J.E. Nowlin, 1937-1941 Don Burns, 2000-2012
C.J. Garner, 1941-1944 Brian McCutchen, 2013-2015
D. Eillis Walker, 1944-1946 Allen & Nathan Cooper, 2016-2017 Interim
Charles Tidwell, Sr., 1947-1949 Roy Whited, 2017 August 2017 Interim
Billy Norris, 1949-1953 Christopher Wiles, 2017-
Paul Matthews, 1953-1958 served both
West and Central until new min. was found
Mission Work of Central Church congregation is most appreciated by its recipients. One
finds it difficult to truly give all the mission work for the cause of Christ that Central has been
involved in reaching Christians in need or taking the Bible in reaching souls in hearing
The Same Gospel- Same Message- The Bible
Central Church (Sparta Church) supported other congregations in their need for a minister or
financial assistance. History gives the message of Edward Nowlin, Central minister who reached
to citizens outside Sparta city limits. In 1940 he preached Christ in a tent gospel meeting Blue
Springs Road. Souls obeyed the gospel in baptism. The baptisms by Minister Nowlin were held
in the Calfkiller River near what is known as Bethel Church of Christ, Blue Springs Road.
Beecher Hunter Lambert and wife, Mollie Mae Davis Lambert were baptized in 1940 by
Minister Nowlin. They became members at Central Church later in life. They were the parents
of Thelma Lambert Pippin, also a member of Central Church.
One can relate history as history in each individual. Historical moments as discussed
surely were pleasing to God and Jesus Christ. An example is from the record of March 14, 1940,
by H. Leo Boles, who recognized Brother J.R. Tubb in his audience, Central Church of Christ,
Miami, FL in a gospel meeting by Brother Boles.
“I am glad to recognize in the audience tonight many new faces; some of these I have known for
a long time in Tennessee. Among these I mention Bailey Tubb and other relatives. He is the son
of old Brother J.R. Tubb, Sparta, TN, who is the senior elder of the church of Christ there.
Brother J.R. Tubb is one of the best men I ever knew; he has done more for the church at Sparta
than any other man. He has been interested in Christian Education and has frequently made
liberal contributions to David Lipscomb College while I was president of that institution. I am
glad to recognize in this audience some of his children and grandchildren.”
During his leadership tenure at Central, Brother J.R. Tubb wrote a study guide book:
“The Divisions and Books of the Bible.” He was a true man of wisdom and a Bible scholar. In
1935 Bro. Tubb served as one of the directors of Tennessee Polytechnic College. When they
found it necessary to dismiss their educational goal to the State of Tennessee, the College
became what is known today as Tennessee Technological University.
Vietnam Mission Boxes: (right:) Loula Tubb, sitting, Ms. Ruth Rhea (Pinkie) Tubb Hill, Frances
Camp, Marie and Schumann Brewer, and Barnett Powell, packing boxes to send to Vietnam
during the war there. These went through the Red Cross.
In years after 1963 Central Church sponsored a daily radio program. This program was
scheduled for 12:35 pm Monday through Friday with Bible discussions on WSMT Radio in
Sparta, TN. The speaker was frequently a minister at Central.
Church Directory
As stated earlier in this writing, perhaps the first worship service held by West Sparta
Church congregation, January 26, 1958 was a milestone in Central Church’s mission work in
White County.
According to former minister Schumann Brewer in 1974, “the Central Church of Christ is
enjoying the facilities of a new commodious building at 105 North Main St. This new building
was completed in September 1965. In January of 1974, we were able to make the last payment
on this building, and are now debt free. As a result of this, we have now entered into an
expanded mission work, and this we expect to enlarge upon as we continue to grow. Some of
our regular mission work at this time is North Augusta, S.C. $550. per month: Bob Prater,
African work, $100. per month: Newton, Mississippi $100. per month: Sierra Leone in South
West African work, $50. per month; Jerry Nowlin, Tallapoosa, Ga. $75. per month. In addition
to the above, we have helped others with a one time donation, and considering this, we are
averaging $1,150.00 in Mission work per month.”
Schumann Brewer
One can recognize how the past and present are related- Central Church continues to
maintain mission goals and aspirations in reaching lost souls.
The Central Church holds a Bible worship service for the residents of Life Care Assisted
Living. A weekly Lord’s Day morning service is open for those who wish to attend. The
worship hour is 8:00 am. The Bible is read, hymns are sung and a message is given by a
speaker. The Lord’s Supper is also provided. The residents appreciate these Lord’s Day
Services.
Cuba Mission
Cuba - Map
Cuba Group Meeting
Cuba Baptism
Cuba, School and Jail Time
According to Ms. Ruth Rhea (Pinkie) Tubb Hill, her grandson, Greg Johnson, in 1998,
had just graduated from U.T. with a minor in Spanish. He had been to South America and
Mexico to learn more Spanish. Wayne Stubblefield was taking several thousand dollars to help
build a church school in Cuba and asked Greg if he could go with him. At the same time the
Pope was to be there and the government said each person entering Cuba had to have a certain
white card. Wayne did not know about the card, so when their plane landed in Cuba they were
immediately taken to jail and spent the night there. All the cash was taken and they were
interrogated. The next morning their money was returned to them, they were taken to the hotel
to meet their contact person, taken to the airport and sent home. They were in Miami before any
of us knew of this. Greg has a great grandfather and a great-great grandfather who served as
Elders at Central Church. He attended Sunday school and church here when he was very young.
El Salvador 2017
And the Walls Fell Down
“The Jericho Project”
Berea church of Christ, Philadelphia church of Christ,
Florence church of Christ and Central church of Christ
Joshua 6:20
So the people shouted when the priests blew with the trumpets: and it came to pass, when
the people heard the sound of the trumpet, and the people shouted with a great shout, that the
wall fell down flat, so that the people went up into the city, every man straight before him, and
they took the city.
The El Salvador mission trip was one of great excitement. There were new cities added
to the list, glasses to give out, 2,000 food bags to distribute and visits to the Benjamin Bloom
Children’s Hospital planned. However, God has opened a new door in El Salvador.
The problem of gang violence for years has threatened to rip the country apart. Many
young men and women become involved in gang activity, with some barely in their teens joining
the gangs. The gangs are heavily involved in drug trafficking, car theft, extortion and other
illegal activity. The murder rate among young people in the gangs is very high with many gang
members either in jail or dead.
The Principal of the elementary school in San Bartolo made a decision to try to intervene
in the lives of the children by asking Armando Gamez and his son Eric to come to the school and
teach Bible as part of the curriculum. Walls are being torn down in this wonderful work and
Armando has named it the “Jericho Project.” More about this later.
As usual we began the work with the preparation of the food bags at the Central Church
in San Salvador.
The preparation of 1,200 food bags and 1,000 children’s bags took well into the evening, but left
us ready for the week ahead.
The first day was one of anticipation as we visited the school. We arrived around 10 a.m.
while classes were in session. The children were very excited to see us as it was something out
of their normal routine. There are almost 1,200 students in the school and we were able to give
every one of them a Bible. The Bibles were donated by Great Cities Ministries who received
them from Lifeway Book Stores.
In addition to the Bibles, we were able to fit many of the children and some of the parents
with glasses. The smaller children received a bag with school supplies, tooth paste and brush
and toy. In the picture above, you see the Bibles and the bags being handed out. The school has
three-four hour sessions and we were able to attend two sessions. Some of our group went back
to the night session and gave out Bibles to those students.
The work at the school is a great opportunity for the Gospel to be taught to children who
might otherwise never hear God’s word. The Principal has taken a courageous stand to teach the
Bible to these children in the hope that hearts will be touched and help them avoid the
entrapment of gangs. It is our goal to support them in whatever way that we can.
The rest of the week was filled with going to the towns to distribute food bags, children’s
bags and assist in their VBS. This year’s theme was “Jesus Feeds the 5,000.” The churches are
very innovative in putting on skits and make a excellent presentation with very few resources.
One afternoon was taken with a visit to the Bloom Children Hospital where we were
allowed to visit the children and the family member staying with them. We gave out bags of
treats and supplies for the children in the wards. No pictures were allowed in the hospital as it
had become a security issue because of the gangs.
Overall, we feel the trip was a success. God has opened doors and walls have been torn
down. The work in the school brings great promise in spreading God’s word to these children
and hopefully keep them from a life in the gangs. We established new relationships with the
Christians in San Juan Opioco and Cuidad Arce as well as continuing the work in El Tule,
Apopa, Lourdes, San Marcos Jiboa and San Bartolo. All of us on the Missions Ministry are
grateful for the faithful support of the Elders and the members of Central church of Christ. IT is
our prayer that whatever is done in El Salvador and around the world will be done for the glory
and honor of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
Bible Classes
Central Church building is used by members of the congregation and for worship periods.
These periods include Sunday morning for both Bible classes and worship. Several classes are
offered on Sunday mornings: The ladies Bible class, Men’s Bible class, the youth class,
including special recognition to small children for Bible introduction.
The ladies Bible class recently purchased Bibles for study groups at the White County
Jail. This is a phase of community service that Central Church is involved. The ladies class also
has provided funds to feed hungry children in White County with the DeRossett congregation.
First Steps Pre-School
First Steps Pre-school is Central’s Mother’s Day Out program. Started in the fall of 2001, First
Steps has served several hundreds of children in the White County area and will be beginning its
17
th
year in August. The children are taught basic school skills in hopes of preparing them for
kindergarten, as well as having outside time and may play activities. Mrs. Becky Tubb visits on
Wednesdays and leads the children in a music program including songs and rhymes. Mrs. Gail
Webb is a regular guest reader and enjoys bringing books to share with children each week. A
summer session was added in June 2015 with the school operating in June and July. The current
staff includes Mrs. Kay England, who has been with First Steps from the beginning, Mrs.
Melissa Henry, Miss Kelly Sims and Director Mrs. Laurie Putnam.
Singing Central Auditorium
Music Director - Becky Tubb
First Steps Teacher Melissa Henry
First Steps Teacher Kay England
First Steps Teacher Elaine Nash
First Steps Teacher Laurie Putnam
Youth
The Central Youth Group provides a place for students to begin a relationship with Jesus,
through which they will discover everything God made them to be. Our students learn to live the
best kind of life by caring about things that God cares about justice, mercy, humility and love.
The Central Youth Group participates in many activities to help youth learn more about
God, build new friendships and provide service to the community. Cellar is an activity before
class on Wednesday night where the youth meet to either play games, make a video, or go to
Lifecare to have fellowship with the residents (and maybe Bingo!) before having a meal. On the
fourth Sunday morning before church, the youth conducts the church service for the Assisted
Living session at Lifecare of Sparta.
The Central Youth Group is a group of loving and dedicated young people who are
passionate for Christ and strive to follow Him with all aspects of their lives.
Youth Ministers
Woody Briggs Jim Saunders 2000-2004
Mark Summers Adam Daniels 2005-2008
David Straughn 1980 Daren Little 2009-2011
Bob Lloyd 1983-1984 David Schilling 2012-2016
Tim Senn 1990 Patrick Lankford 2016- present
Cary Hadly 1995-2000
The Bible Bowl was an activity for the youth at Central Church. The activity was held
annually with several congregations participating in White County and congregations in
surrounding areas.
The activity consisted of Biblical questions in both the Old and New Testament.
The photo of 1994 provides Central Church’s participants and winners who answer the
most correct Bible answers to Bible questions. This includes Lee Davis, Bob Young, Kim
Daniels ________________, and Danny Camp. This activity provided the youth in learning
teamwork, study periods of the Bible and associations with other youth.
Bible Bowl Central
Bible Bowl Central
Library
The Central Church Library is available to its members. It offers a collection of reference
books to help study the Bible - the Word of God. The Bible is the most significant book in the
library. Study is important in order to grow in spirit and in truth.
“Ronnie” Golf Tournament
The Central church gets together every year to play golf and have a picnic at Fall Creek
Falls. After the dearth of Ronnie Powell, the tournament was named after him in 2004 for his
love of golf. Each year several of our members and the community play 18 holes of golf and
then go to one of the shelters for a picnic. Those not playing golf join the others at the shelter to
enjoy fellowship and good food.
Ronnie Golf Tournament Church Family
Ronnie Golf Tournament
Ronnie Golf 2008 Winners: Daniel Tubb, Lindsey Hitchcock,
Sean Luna, Bradley Barker, Billy Buck
Primetime
Primetime was organized in the summer of 1996. Its goal was to minister to senior
citizens at Central and as an outreach program to the White County community.
The organizers were Gary Hadley, Bill and Carol Oakley, Mary White, Elizabeth
Stewart, Allan and Billie Stingley. Through the years several other ladies and men have joined
the effort to plan other activities.
Once a month the Primetime group plans a trip for a Tennessee tour and two overnight
trips twice a year. Individuals pay their expenses in regards. This activity is a great fellowship
for seniors.
The ministry has been a success in the lives of our seniors and as a tool in bringing
individuals to Christ and closer to each other. The program provides Bible teaching, fellowship,
encouragement, and sharing of faith in Jesus Christ.
Love and interest of Primetime continues as it meets its weekly program of gospel
singing, prayer, Bible study, meal and entertainment on Wednesdays from 10:30 till 12:30.
Currently Janice Bradley provides much of the organizing in continued Primetime ministry as of
2017.
Fun at Welch’s Point: Pattie Lou Howard, “Pinkie” Hill, Carol Allison, Deborah Green
Central Primetime Historic Ruby, TN
Primetime Church of Christ Beersheba
Ross and Brenda Cardwell Central Members for many years
Beersheba 2002
Beersheba 2000
Primetime
Primetime
Primetime
Primetime
Primetime
Primetime
Primetime
Central Life Ministry
Central Life Ministry encourages members to host, participate and enjoy activities
focused on being together outside scheduled church activities. The ministry “aspires to inspire”
members to invite neighbors, family and friends to enjoy Christian fellowshihp in the hopeof
building the Church and spreading the good news of Jesus Christ.
Central Life Ministry
Central Life Ministry
Christian Life Ministry
Christian Life Ministry
Christian Life Ministry
Christian Life Ministry
Christian Life Ministry
Christian Life Ministry
Christian Life Ministry
Christian Life Ministry
Central Photographs
Auditorium Bible Study
Ladies Bible Class
March 2015: “Pinkie” Hill holds love to the Easter Rabbit that arrived on her lawn on Saturday
morning for the annual Easter Egg hunt for K-3 grade of Central Church of Christ
Easter Egg Hunt 2000: “Pinkie” Hill’s Lawn
The K-3 Grades truly enjoyed the hospitality of “Pinkie” provided on Saturday before Easter.
Her lawn was full of colorful eggs as the children began their hunt. Great fellowship!
Mr. Jimmy Wallace provided transportation to a Saturday special event for K-3 children the
Easter Egg Hunt- at Ms. Pinkie’s lawn. This activity was special for children and adults also,
including parents.
Thanksgiving Fellowship Meal
Picnic
Youth Teen Group
Ladies Bible Class
Bobby Swindle Central Bible Study
Dr. Jeff Ross Deacon
Young Adult Bible Class
Central Church Family Members (left to right) Louise Breeding Young, Mrs. R.L. (Gussie)
Gillen, Gillen Young, Bob Young, Mattie Pearl Gillen Breeding. Four generations are
represented in the above photo at the current building “note burning.” 1970’s
Elder Jim Camp Ready for VBS
Vacation Bible School Week
Vacation Bible School Week 19__.
Office
Through the years, the office of the church has had the responsibility of keeping the
members informed about members who are sick and the activities of the church. A weekly
bulletin has been published for several years, going from receiving them in the mail to having
them sent out by electronic avenues. We also have run a pantry out of the office, serving the
community for several years. This has been open to anyone in the immediate area. This has
resulted in the members of the community being aware of our church activities (such as the
annual Thanksgiving meal for the community) and also having several of the community at the
jail sign up for our free Bible studies. Several of our own members have been involved with the
secretary work down through the years. Janice Bradley now serves as the secretary since 1992
until now.
The treasury and the office have worked together for many years, making sure the weekly
contributions are secure for paying bills, mission work and other donations that we receive
through the years. Dave Weber serves as treasurer at this time - making sure the elders and
others have monthly financial reports.
Jeff Haston is responsible for building and maintaining Central Church website
(www.spartacoc.com). He also is responsible for social media and any technology assistance or
updates.
Gifts Memorials
Mr. Ether Weaver and his sister, Miss Essie Weaver, members of the Central Church
gave to the Lord’s work. They were from White Oak Flatt Community, White County, TN.
They had earnings from their farm and livestock. It was their desire to leave one-third of
earnings to Central. The money was to be used to train ministers for the gospel to be preached.
Mr. William Warren Jenkins left a memorial gift to Central to be used for the church
building as needed. Dr. Jenkins and his mother were long time members of Central.
Dr. Lighton Smith provided a memorial gift to honor his deceased wife, Mary Willie
Tubb Smith. They were members of Central for many years.
Many memorials and gifts have been received from many members over the past one
hundred fifty years for continued growth in the Lord’s work. An example: A devoted Christian
donated a lot or most of it to Central for additional improvements with building and parking.
Acknowledgements
Our efforts in citing the historical events and records are appreciated from previous documents,
brochures and the Central congregation.
Photos
Robert Luther Kirby Irene Graham Kirby
1-30-1903-9-12-1991 11-5-1906-7-4-1991
Members of Central Church 40 years+. Mr. and Mrs. Kirby active members Mr.
Kirby service included leading in prayer, presiding at the Lord’s Table and reading Bible
Scripture. They were a happy couple who found themselves in church on the Lord’s Day.
1930 A Model Ford Sedan Pippin Family
Kenneth Pippin’s Dad drove this identical 1930 Model A car for his family and neighbors
to church in the Peeled Chestnut Community. The Oak Grove and Landsen Churches of Christ
most frequent with Gospel meetings. Kenneth says he was a small boy, however his Dad never
wanted to miss any service of the church. We all crowed in the Model A as Dad drove with
Mama, Reba, Howard, Lee, Hobart Jr. and myself. Sometimes we crowed in an extra person
because my Dad loved people and the Church. I hope that I have lived up to the expectations of
my dad an God by being a Christian with a Christian Dad and Mother.
Kenneth Pippin
Documents
Poems by Horace Richardson