1908-1929

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The records for 1908 show that A. A. Keith was called to preach twice a month.  He was from Ft. Meade, Florida.  Services were held at 10:30 a.m. and 7:30 p.m.  The Church minutes provide a further insight into the seriousness of church membership.  It is recorded on August 2, 1908 that "Brother            presented himself for restoration on having failed to live a Godly life and fallen short of his duty as a child of God.  He was unanimously accepted under his acknowledgement to lead a better life and was sorry for his past wrongs."

On October 10, 1908 the Church minutes show that regular was shown for the orphans in Arcadia.  "A collection was taken in Sunday School for orphans' day for  orphanage at Arcadia resulting in collection of $12.20."

A protracted meeting was held from the first Sunday in December until the 23rd of December, being held twice a day.  The preacher was E. B. Farrer from Louisville, Kentucky, and there were so many decisions that the congregation had to think about enlarging the building.  The clerk, A. O. Frink, said it well:  "During the meeting our Congregation was increased until we were puzzled what course to pursue to take care of our congregation.  We took this to God in prayer and He directed we enlarge our church."  They made an appeal to the congregation and the offering for the meeting amounted to $503.90, of which $196.40 was paid to the evangelist, pastor and singer and $307.50 to building and incidentals.

The record shows that the trustees were authorized to purchase Lot 12 of Block 23 which is the lot lying north of the church next to Roesch lot.  They were authorized to pay $100.00 which was 1/2 the value placed by the owner, W. H. H. Gleason.  The trustees were given full power to borrow the money to pay for this lot because there was not sufficient funds in the treasury of the Church.

R. W. Thiat was unanimously called as pastor on February 4, 1909. He had previously led a revival at First Baptist and served as supply a short time before coming as pastor.  The record shows that he came from Plant City, Florida.

It is a sad matter that the Church minutes are missing from February 4, 1909 until September 28, 1938.  The author has had to depend upon the Annual Report of the Church to the Indian River Baptist Association for what information is available.  This fact has caused the author to have a deeper appreciation for these Annual Reports as they serve to summarize the work of the local church from year to year.  Without them, First Baptist would have no records to preserve.  All of the figures in the Statistical Table have been gleaned from the Assoclatlonal Reports for the missing years.

The period from 1910-1919 showed a high of 71 members in 1910 to a low of 30 in 1918.  Sunday School enrollment during this decade was at a high of 107 in 1910 to a low of 33 in 1918. Thus the 1909-1910 church year was a very good one under the leadership of R. W. Thiat.   There was no report to the Indian River Baptist Association for the church year 1918-1919. Things seem to have been an a decline in the 1917-1918 year.  Perhaps this the fact that our nation was at war overseas as well as experiencing some difficulty at home.  Yet, during this time gifts to missions remained rather consistent.

A report in the minutes of the Indian River Baptist Association for 1914 is included for our enlightraent as to the financial climate of this time period.

"State Missions"

 "The importance of State Missions in Florida cannot be overestimated. Our future prosperity is dependent upon our meeting all our obligations, and going up to the State Convention free of debt.

 "Debt may mean retrenchment and retrenchment means the crippling of our foreign and home mission work, as well as our educational enterprises.

"The war in Europe has very largely caused depression, especially in the the phosphate, turpentine and lumber industries, making collections much more difficult in a great many of our churches.

"The East Coast is less affected than other parts of our State and in view of this fact the churches of Indian River Association should make a strenuous effort to help relieve the situation, thereby helping our State Board to meet all their obligations.

"We recommend that each church make a special effort until the 30th of November, forwarding all collections promptly to our Corresponding Secretary, Dr. S. B. Rogers, at Jacksonville.

 "We recommend further that we do all our missionary work  through and in connection with our State Board."

The Indian River Baptist Association convened with the Eau Gallie Baptist Church, Tuesday. November 11, 1911 at 7:OO pm. After song and prayer, Rev. J. C. DuBose, pastor at Ft. Pierce preached an excellent introductory sermon from Revelation 1:5-6 setting forth: 

1) the Love of Christ;

2) the Washing of Regeneration;

3) the Christians' Kingdom and Service. Messengers representing Eau Gallie were Mrs. E. E. Prince, S. B. Stewart and A. O. Frink.

Again in 1914, A. O. Frink from Eau Gallie served as Moderator of the Association and Rev. W. H. Adams served as clerk as well as Chairman of the Executive Committee.  Messengers at the Titusville meeting were Rev. W. H. Adams, C. F. Morris, A. O. Frink, B. W. Morris, Mrs. J. D. Frink and Mrs. W. H. Adams. Preaching Services were held on the first and third Sundays in 1914.  William H. Adams was the pastor. The decade of 1920-1929 shows 5 pastors with some information missing in the 1921-1922 and 1924-1925 church years.  It is interesting to note that the Church grew from 20 members in 1924 to 157 in the 1926-1927 church year.  This growth spurt was under the pastoral leadership of Rev. Harry A. Day.  There were 56 baptisms recorded for the 1926-1927 church year.  The Church had full-time preaching services under Rev. C. T. McKee in 1927-1928. W.M.U. was reported for 1926-1927 with an enrollment of 25 and B.Y.P.U. was started the next year at the Church with an enrollment of 7.  The Church ended the decade with 106 members and 46 enrolled in Sunday School.  A picture of the 1927 Vacation Bible School with Pastor Harry A. Day reveals the vitality of the Church at that time.

 

Vacation Bible School - 1927

Harry A. Day, Pastor

 

The Indian River Baptist Association met on October 13 and 14, 1927 at Eau Gallie.  This was only the second time since the Church began.