First United Methodist Church of Arroyo Grande

The First United Methodist Church of Arroyo Grande Celebrates 125 Years of Ministry

Rock founded, Christ centered, Faith sustained

Charter Sunday

September 20, 2009

This morning's service was a fabulous culmination to a year-long celebration of this church's 125th Anniversary. Bishop Mary Ann Swenson delivered the message "Shake It Up", a welcome was given by our District Superintendent Catie Coots, and all six former pastors at lasts night's Celebration Dinner were in attendance: Bill Black, Ken Criswell, Al Gorsline, Ehrhardt Lang, Bob Underwood, and Son Hye Kim. Also present was our Convenant Missionary Judy Atwood. Music was provided by the Lord's Crew Praise Team, the Grande Ringers, and the Chancel Choir. Included was a rousing chorus of Don McGuire's "125th Anniversary March" which he wrote for the occasion.

Following the service, the bell of the church was rung 125 times by everyone in the congregation (that wanted to). This turned out to be a great deal of fun, and was the source of nearly all the pictures here.

Here is the Charter Sunday Bulletin (PDF, 634kb).

See last night's 125th Anniversary Celebration Homecoming Dinner.

Doug Ballagh was the first person to ring the bell today, and he was the last person to ring the bell in September of 1960 at the church's location in the Village (see inset), right after which the church family made the move to Halcyon Road.

Real bell ringers are easy to spot. See the Grande Ringers page.

The pictures from here on are by Gary Hughes.

Bishop Mary Ann Swenson
Pastor David Burgeson
District Superintendent Catie Coots

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