The Times - Serving Waitsburg, Dayton and the Touchet Valley

By Dena Martin
The Times 

Waitsburg Welcomes 2019: Churches


February 14, 2019

Courtesy Photo

Potlucks are a favorite event at the Presbyterian Church.

In this multi-part series, The Times connects with Waitsburg businesses, churches and organizations to hear their plans for 2019.

Waitsburg Presbyterian Church

The Waitsburg Presbyterian Church, located at 504 Main Street, is saying good-bye to Pastor Bret Moser, who will retire at the end of the month after 15 years of service. The church is in the process of setting up a search committee to find a new pastor.

The congregation will hold a going-away celebration for the Moser family on the last Sunday of the month, Feb. 24, and the entire community is invited. The event will be a potluck following the church service at approximately 12:15 or 12:30.

The Presbyterian Church holds services every Sunday at 11 a.m., with Sunday School at 9:30 a.m.

Brandon and Ann Miller lead youth group every Wednesday. Middle schoolers arrive at 5 p.m. Members of the congregation take turns providing a free dinner for all youth, which is served at 6:45, followed by high school youth group.

Bruce and Barb Abbey lead the Alpha Course each Tuesday at 5 p.m. The course is an introduction to Christianity and allows time for discussion, answering questions and fellowship. A meal is served at 5 p.m followed by a DVD and discussion. Anyone interested is welcome to join at any time.

The church/community choir practices each Wednesday at 6:30 p.m. Bethany Moser has served as director, so a new choir director is needed. Anita Baker, who served in that role for many years, will assume duties through year-end. Everyone is welcome.

Alcoholics Anonymous meets in the Presbyterian Church basement on Saturday, Monday and Friday from 8-9 p.m.

Senior lunches are served on Tuesdays at 11:30 am. with meals available for delivery if needed.

Waitsburg Christian Church

Pastor Matthew Wyatt has led the Waitsburg Christian Church, located at 604 Main Street, since 2016 and says his congregation has several things it is passionate about in 2019.

"We haven't had a youth group in years here, but with the growth of our church that extends as far as Walla Walla, Milton-Freewater, Dayton, Pomeroy, Prescott, Dixie, and even Pasco, we felt a need to start a youth group that mirrors the various towns that we reach.  The Butler family and Anderson family, both from Walla Walla, have stepped up with a passion for youth that has been incredible.  The first night we had close to 50 students and we continue to grow," said Pastor Matt. Youth group meets the first and third Monday of every month from 6:30-7:30.

Joan Helm leads a group of women who knit prayer shawls that are distributed to those who are hurting, struggling, sick or have lost a loved one. They are prayed over before being presented to those in need. Knitters meet at 9 a.m. and 7 p.m. every Monday at 203 West 4th.

Women's Bible Study is every Tuesday at either 9 a.m. at Pam Conover's house or at 7 p.m. in the church basement. People can join any time without feeling they need to play catch-up.

Men meet in the church basement the first Saturday of every month at 8 a.m. for a "great breakfast" and fellowship, followed by a service project.

Celebrate Recovery, for anyone struggling with a hurt, habit, addiction or hang-up, is each Wednesday. Dinner is served at 6:30 with a meeting from 7-8 p.m

On Feb. 23 the church will hold a men's night, showing the movie Courageous and eating "unhealthy food." All men, no matter the age are welcome.

"Personally, as a pastor, it is amazing to be able to lead a church not only where I grew up but also alongside some of the most incredible people I've ever met.  Our vision for this year is "community mindset".  This building is not my workplace.  The community is my workplace," said Pastor Matt.

Since joining the church Wyatt said he and his wife, Krystal have witnessed over 200 lives come to know the Lord with 33 baptisms done in 2018 along.

"This is a church of loving people, and some of the most welcoming individuals that you could ever come across.  No matter what area of life or background you come from, we just want to welcome you in, give you a big hug, and tell you about the One who changed our lives," Pastor Matt said.

Pastor Matt is also passionate about being part of the community and reaching people on the street.

"I would like to invite those who feel they are missing something in their life or are just curious to what we are all about, to join us at 10 a.m. on Sunday mornings.  You won't be looked down on, you won't get sideways glances, you will be loved on and welcomed with open arms.  This church isn't a museum of perfect people.  It's a hospital of broken and needy people who know that IN SPITE of who we are, God could never love us more or less than He does right at this moment," Pastor Matt said.

Waitsburg Chapel

After running a home Bible study for several years, Pastor Charles McGuire accepted a building donation from the Rays and Allen families in May of 1975 and dedicated the original building of the Pentecostal Church of God on Main Street. That building is currently home to the Whoopemup Hollow Café.

When the church outgrew that facility, members began using the former Baptist Church building at the chapel's current location at 320 W. 2nd. That building was built by Winfield Johnson, from an old barn on what was the old lumber mill property.

Current pastor Reverend Jimmie Daves assumed his role as pastor in December of 1983. This past year, Rev. Daves was honored with his 40-year commemorative pin as an ordained minister with the Pentecostal Church of God.

In 1984, Daves alongside Steve Knox of the Christian Church, Ernie Gates and Bob Lythgo of the Nazarene Church and Les Hyder of the Presbyterian Church banded together to form the Waitsburg Ministerial Association.

Several community events were designated as union services to help bind the community together, with the pastors taking turns providing the message. These services included the Easter Sunrise Service, Bachelorette Service, Fall Festival, Thanksgiving Service, and Christmas Eve Service.

The Ministerial Association also collected items to provide Christmas baskets to those in need, until about eight years ago. It also organized the Traveler's Aid Fund to help those traveling through, who may have become stranded and were in need of food, fuel or lodging.

Over the years, the church has hosted midweek Bible Studies, Sunday night services, youth activities and welcomed evangelists and music groups.

Courtesy Photo

Christian Church Pastor Matt Wyatt points to the newly established Blessing Box outside the church. Grocery and hygiene items are free for the taking for those in need.

In 2019, the Waitsburg Chapel will continue its food pantry program, started in 2015 and open to anyone in need, will host its 36th Annual Easter Egg Hunt following Easter services and will continue its fifth year of hosting Outdoor Summer Movie Night. A tent revival is planned for this summer.

Waitsburg Chapel meets at 9:45 for Sunday School and 11 for Morning Worship each Sunday.

St. Mark's Catholic Church

St. Mark's Catholic Parish, located at 405 W. 5th Street, has been served by Priest Steve Werner since June of 2017. Father Werner also serves the parishes of Pomeroy and Dayton. St. Marks has a Sunday evening mass at 5 p.m. with a monthly parish potluck following mass.

An Ash Wednesday service will be held at 7 a.m. on March 6. During the Fridays of lent, the parish has the stations of the cross followed by a soup supper. Holy Thursday and God Friday services are held at St. Joseph's parish in Dayton at 5 p.m. St. Mark's will have an Easter vigil service at 8:30 p.m. and will have a tri-parish potluck on June 22.


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