Historic church celebrates 150 years

Published 12:15 pm Tuesday, August 13, 2019

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Community churches dot the landscape of Claiborne County. Some, dating back to our founding, trace the outlines of our days when horse and buggy brought us to the steps of the church that sustained us during those early, raw years.

Deep in the heart of the Lone Mountain community stands a church that has been in existence for 150 years. Organized in 1869, it first flew under the flag of the Rockcastle United Baptist Church of Jesus Christ. The name, changed in 1911 to the Lone Mountain Baptist Church, is a thriving community meetinghouse for willing souls to gain heavenly sustenance.

The original log cabin building stood nearby the intersection of Lone Mountain and Cardwell Ridge Roads. The building served triple duty as the home of Ruben and Jane Hopson and as the community church and school.

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At some point in time, the logs from the church were used to build what would become the Mountain Creek Primitive Baptist Church. That building still stands, across the road from the original location.

Construction began in 1928 on the current Lone Mountain Baptist Church building.

According to church member Mary Wethington, there was a time when the Baptists and the Methodists came together under one roof to worship. Members of the Lone Mountain Church would take turns with the Methodist Church in delivering the sermon of the week. This unique practice lasted some 19 years, from approximately 1911 to 1930.

The earliest available records show that Lone Mountain Church has been connected with the Baptist Association since 1876. The Women’s Mission Society, now known as the Women’s Missionary Union, was organized on Nov. 20, 1960.

Lone Mountain Church held a special celebration on June 9, to commemorate 150 years of continuous service to its community. The church, filled with previous and current members and their families along with well-wishers, enjoyed a day of thanksgiving.

The ‘Prodigal Sons’ performed spiritual songs. Guest speakers Rev. Joe Sorah and Rev. Mike Viles were uplifting in word and testimony.

Pastor Rev. Lawrence Fultz and wife, Mary, were presented a special plaque commemorating 40 years in leadership at the church. A special dinner was enjoyed as the community gathered together for the special occasion.

“God has been here the entire time, blessing, saving and keeping this church alive. Many families and several generations have grown up here. As times have changed, families have changed – traditions have changed. But, this church stands firm in its faith in God and His purpose for the church,” said Wethington.