Sparta Christian Church can trace its history back to before 1885. A group of people wanted to get back to basic Bible teaching. They didn’t want to be called Baptist, Methodist, Presbyterian, etc. They didn’t want to recite man-made creeds or follow man-made doctrines; thus the older slogan, “No creed but Christ, no book but the Bible, no name but the Divine”. They began with a few members meeting in the old school building on the west side of Sparta, which has since burned down.
In 1885 they built their present building at Cherry and Oak. The land was donated by William Abbott, Sr. Other members donated building materials, labor, and time toward the construction of the building. The women prepared meals for the workers and everyone participated in any way that they could.
Among those helping to construct the building were T.A. Foster, David Cowan, H.P. Lee, Rich Shipman, Mr. Abbott, Mr. Phillips, and Arthur Crain.
The first board members were H.H. Lee, John H. Galloway, and Enoch Wright; Elders Thomas Day and J.N. Stephens; Deacons John Galloway, J.P. Lee, and John Abbott.
The first minister was Thomas A. Foster. Some of the ministers that followed were George Cowan, Brother Prock, S.A Yokley, S.M. Hooten, Joseph Gailer, W.A. Downs, Brother Cuiley, Walter M. Mundell, Brother Dewey, W.C. Wright, Brother Kirk, George Ball, M. Mitchum, D. Frank West, Brother Winters, Brother Wade, Frank Turner, Harold Day, C.C. Keller, Kenneth Breeze , Kermit Finley, Faust Matthews, A.Z. Matthews, Jim Nutter, Stuart Ward, Don Jordan, Bill Dykes, Ray Cartwright, Steve Cable, James (Jim) B. Spradlin, Jr., Phillip Lowe, Cole Parrish and Mac Johnson.
Sunday school was started in January 1889. Some of the first teachers were C.L. Eichelberger, Jennie Eichelberger, Mrs. Fannie Lee, Mary Lee, Fannie Abbott, Jennie Keen, and Mrs. W.H. Downn.
The building was one large room until 1954, when a room was added for use as a fellowship hall and classrooms. In 1975 they added bathrooms and more classrooms. They also remodeled the sanctuary: added the baptistery, removed the old wood stove at the back, moved the pulpit to the other end of the sanctuary where it is today, and removed the old wooden theatre seats – replacing them with the present-day pews. Central heat and air were subsequently added. Before the addition of the baptistery, they baptized in Swan Creek and the Finley River. Desiring to serve the 21st Century young people, we recently added multi-media capabilities.
Sparta Christian Church is one of the oldest church buildings in Christian County that is still in use today. The structure has never burned down and the congregation has always met in the same building at Cherry and Oak since 1885.
Eight generations of William Abbott, Sr.’s family have attended Sparta Christian Church.
Sparta Christian Church continues in 2011 with the same basic Bible beliefs of their ancestors. We have been “Welcoming all since 1885”.
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Reaching the lost, Teaching the saved, Encouraging all
Welcoming all since 1885
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