History of St. Luke
Told by Sandra Haywood
There were no churches on Santa Fe Pike when we got our start in 1951 on Santa Fe Pike. A two-week revival was held in a tent on Dodson Field, where the car lot is now. A big sign was placed out front that said: “Revival. All Welcome” with the time and date. A large group gathered and Rev. Fred Blankenship, pastor of Riverside Methodist, asked if anyone would like for a church to be in this area, fourteen people came up, they were our charter members.
First Methodist, Craft, and Riverside all contributed to the start of our church named New Hope. “New” because we were new and “Hope” that we would grow. We knocked on doors, told people about New Hope Church, and invited them to church. We grew so big that we soon needed more space. In 1953, the church’s name changed to St. Luke. With financial assistance from First Methodist, work began on our new building.
In the fall of 1953, construction began on the first part of our building. The name was changed to St. Luke Methodist Church. In 1967, our sanctuary was constructed and we put in a lot of hard work through the next year. My husband, Bobby Joe Haywood Sr. and my brother, the late Billy Bob Moore, built the beautiful white brick wall in our sanctuary.
Bobby Joe Haywood was an apprentice bricklayer and he did the labor and was allowed to lay a few bricks. The beautiful cross on the brick wall was built by Ed Pitts and Otto Sharp.
To raise money and reach out to the community, we had fish fry for years that nearly everyone worked hard on. We also had many dinners, yard sales, car washes, outdoor singing, and a dump the preacher booth. This was the most difficult and most fun was a booth at the Maury County Fair.
We had a lot of fun too. We had a bowling team of men and women of our church, a men’s and women’s youth softball team, and a group called Bells and Bows.
The first women’s group met at Dwayne Estes’s home where we study the Bible and adopted a person year each year at the nursing home who had no family. We bought them clothes, birthday, Christmas, and Easter gifts. We even adopted a special lady in Russellville, who shared a room with my mother.
There was a men’s church night circle and a prayer group at Gladys Horner’s home. The Faith Circle, at St Luke, do lots of great deeds.
At New Hope, in 1952, Rev. Richard Roe became our minister, we had a few teenagers. So. he would carpool us to his other church, Craft Memorial for our youth activities. In 1966, Rev. Eugene Barrett really made our church grow, with the help of the congregation. Once again, we knocked on doors and told people about our church. Our first youth leader was Mr. John Matheny. He taught the Bible and took youth to visit the sick and shut-ins. He taught them to respect and love others.
I taught our young people for 16-years in Sunday School. Then, my sister, Gail Church took over for another 16 years. Pete Harlan taught for many years and many other dedicated people also taught.
Two important dates are: In 1951, New Hope was founded. In 1953, St Luke was founded with 14 charter members.
Buddy (David) Moore
Mary Elizabeth Pitts
Billy Bob Moore
Eura Mae Brunson
Sandra M Haywood
Matthew “For where two or three have gathered in my name, there I am in there, I am in their midst”. And that is St. Luke.