SBC to celebrate 100 years of Sunday school

Published 7:32 pm Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Although the trend these days is for breakaway churches to have their beginnings as Sunday school or Bible study groups, it wasn’t that way back in 1910.

For a church to begin as a Sunday school, was a bit unique, said Andrew Knick, Southside Baptist Church, pastor.

“For a church to be established from a group that had organized as a Sunday school was unique in 1910,” Knick said. “But that’s how Southside Baptist Church began –as a Sunday school.”

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On Founders Day, Sunday, Sept. 12, Southside Baptist Church will celebrate its 100th anniversary as a Sunday school and church members have been challenged to top a previous high attendance of 322 in Sunday school.

“We will celebrate our 100th anniversary as a Sunday school by dressing as they would have dressed in 1910,’ Knick said. “The program will consist of recognizing prior pastors, their families and prior staff ministers, singing hymns of old and sharing brief history presentations. We have a group that has worked really hard getting the history together and we are looking forward to what they have found about the beginnings of our church. We’ll also have a time for some of our older members to share it they wish.”

Following the 11 a.m. worship service, everyone will be invited to a shared dinner in the fellowship hall.

“Beginning around 1 p.m., we will meet in the sanctuary for an old-fashioned singing,” Knick said. “We’ll have special music by the Glory Boys, a quarter from Southside, and several individuals will sing. It will be a great day of celebration at Southside Baptist Church and all former members and friends are invited to join us in celebrating this important event.”

The church had its beginnings when, on Aug. 24, 1910, members of the First Baptist Church took steps to begin an auxiliary to the First Baptist Church in the Brundidge Heights area. They discussed that this section of the city was growing rapidly and a church there would be a convenience to the people and result in much good.

J.S. Carroll and his wife promised $500 to the building of a church if this amount would be matched plus $100 per year to provide for the maintenance. Other smaller pledges were also made.

On Sept. 1910, 26 people met on the front porch of the Thomas Daniel’s home in Troy and organized the Brundidge Street Sunday School. This porch was about where the porch of Southside Church in now located. These meetings on the porch were called BYOC – Bring Your Own Chair. The people were seated in kitchen chairs brought from their own kitchens and they fanned with paper fans.

Persistent faith and determination of this group was rewarded by the erection of a small white chapel eight months later in 1911 called the Brundidge Street Chapel.

The first Sunday school meeting was held in the new chapel on April 11, 1911 and it was decided that the prayer meetings that were held at the Brundidge Street Chapel would be held on Thursday evenings and attendance grew to 100 or more.

In 1920, pastors from First Baptist began taking charge of prayer meetings. By 1930, the attendance on Sunday was nearly 200.

The Brundidge Street Chapel was organized into a church on Feb. 7, 1937 and chose the name Southside Baptist Church.