House of Thine

Churches are always celebrating something... an anniversary, a dedication, a new pastors arrival, the ground-breaking for a  building. Church members plan for weeks or sometimes months in advance for the ceremonies.

This Sunday. The Big Cabin Methodist Church Is having a celebration that has been planned for fifty years.

August 18th, 2002. The First United Methodist Church of Big Cabin will host an unusual and historic event. They will not only observe the anniversary of their sanctuary, but they will open a time capsule that was placed in the building's cornerstone 50 years ago.

It is not surprising that the members of this church had the foresight to include such an intriguing piece of history when they build the new building. They are a history loving group and have pride in their story.

And what a great story it is. When this part of Oklahoma was still Indian Territory, a small group of devout Methodists organized and held services in a small house in downtown Big Cabin.

Later, a generous Methodist layman named George Trout donated land for a church building. In 1909 a lovely  wood frame church was constructed.

It had decorative features that must have been awe-inspiring to the early settlers. A bell, a spire. and colored glass windows added to the beauty of the church.

For forty-three years this little white church served as a meeting house for Christian fellowship. It was also a beacon of hope and haven for the lost, as new members were always welcome,

The pastors who served during this time were often circuit riders from Adair, Afton, or Ketchum. They rode the train into town and spent the night at the Colonial Hotel or with families in town.

Church records mention a glorious revival on a spring day in May of 1922. Forty-eight new members were baptized in Rock Creek amidst great joy and song.

Despite the beauty and history of the old church, members decided that a new building was needed and the church was replaced with a new brick building in 1952. The members. aware of the historic significance of the change, placed several items in a time capsule in the cornerstone of the new building.

Today, this brick church has been serving the Methodist community for fifty years and a celebration is in order. Following the services at 11:30 and a luncheon at 1:30. the cornerstone will be opened to reveal the contents of the time capsule.

Big Cabin resident Sam Yeoman was a small boy in 1952 and remembers that the men volunteered their labor to build the new church and the women brought big dinners and served the men on outdoor tables.

"I remember the bell in the tower of the old church," Mr. Yeoman reminisced. "It seemed so tall, It really made an impression on me.* The bell was moved from the old church into the new one, along with many memories.

The Methodists of Big Cabin have a milestone to celebrate this  Sunday, A past rich in history and a future full of hope and glory.

Notes:Thanks to Mrs. Arthie Gilmore for her assistance in this column. Acknowledgement to Mr. O.B. Campbell  for historical records.

By Kathleen Dunchamp, Vinita Daily Journal, Aug 12, 2002


The Big Cabin Methodist Church in 1909.
The 1952 cornerstone of  the newer Methodist church will be opened this Sunday, August 18th, 2002 in Big Cabin.
dat 2003

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