Magnolia Seventh-day Adventist Church

A Brief History of Magnolia, Arkansas

The Work Begins

In 1948 a Voice of Prophecy student invited neighbors over for a series of Bible studies. As a result, four people began keeping the Sabbath (Shain, 1948). Martin Shain held meetings in Magnolia in in the fall and reported several interested families. In 1955, Aubrey Fautheree held meetings there using a filmstrip projector. By this time, three Adventist families lived in the area.

Magnolia Company Organized in 1977

It was not until 1977, that a consistent, organized effort was made to establish a church. At that time Elder W. H. Elder and Tom Patzer held a series of meetings in Magnolia (Beeler, 1996; May, 1977). Elder Harold Williams followed up the interests. Elder Terry McCormick served as the pastor of the small company even though he had a full-time job as accountant in the conference office (Record, 1978). The group met in the local VFW hall each week, but conditions were not conducive to worship, so the members looked for a place of their own. About that time the local Catholic congregation put their church up for sale, so the Magnolia congregation purchased it. Renovations were made to include a fellowship hall and Sabbath school classrooms. The members were diligent in paying off their debt a little at a time (Hoover, 2002). The Magnolia group was organized into a company on December 17, 1977 (Record, 1978).

William L. Woodruff at the Magnolia church, where he held a series of meetings in 1989. Members of the church refinished the interior of the newly purchased building (Record, 1989).

Magnolia Church Organized in 1985

On February 28, 1985, it was voted to organize the Magnolia company as a church (Minutes, 1985). In October 1987, it was voted for the Magnolia congregation to purchase a church they had found for sale on Smith Street (Minutes, 1987). This church was dedicated on June 15, 2002 (Hoover, 2002).

A New Church in 2013

On July 9, 2013, the members purchased a new church on Ellis Road and in 2014 they voted to sell the building on Smith Street (Minutes, 2014).

Magnolia church on Ellis Road in Magnolia, Arkansas. Photo courtesy of Elder Stephen Orian.

Citations

(1978, Mar. 23). Southwestern Union Record, p. 12G, H.

(1985, Feb. 28). Executive Committee Minutes. Shreveport, LA: Arkansas-Louisiana Conference of SDA.

(1987, Oct. 22). Ibid.

(1989, May 1). Southwestern Union Record, p. 11.

(2014, Dec. 4). Executive Committee Minutes. Shreveport, LA: Arkansas-Louisiana Conference of SDA.

Beeler, Charles R. (1996). A History of Seventh-day Adventists in Arkansas and Louisiana 1888-1996. Keene: Arkansas-Louisiana Conference of Seventh-day Adventists, p. 155.

Hoover, Alayne E. (2002, Sep. 1). Southwestern Union Record, pp. 13, 14.

May, Bill. (1977, Feb. 12). Ibid., p. 5.

Shain, Martin C. (1948, Dec. 22). Ibid., p. 3.