Christ Alliance Church – 50th Anniversary!
Christ Alliance Church first began as Wireton Christian and Missionary Alliance Church:
The Wireton Christian and Missionary Alliance Church had its beginning in 1939, in a storeroom then known as the Wireton Gospel Chapel. The work was started by two men, Irwin Dueschel and William Kruest. Mr. Dueschel was the first leader of the newly organized church from November 1939 to May 1940, then Lymen Creese until January 1941; Oliver Phillips until February 1943; Reverend William Underwood until July 1944. From July until November 1944, services were conducted by various laymen. Reverend Hagmeier was the Pastor from November 1944 to November 1947. Then a letter was sent to Reverend D. C. Kopp, asking for Candidates. A candidate was sent, but he was not accepted. Reverend Kopp suggested that the work be given up and the congregation join the Ambridge or Aliquippa church. At this time, there were 22 in attendance and after much prayer, Reverend Kopp was asked if Mr. Joseph Berkner would be permitted to take over the work. Prayer was answered and Mr. Berkner was ordained into the ministry of the Christian and Missionary Alliance. Property was purchased for the erection of a new church. Part of the property was donated by Miss Jennie Owens. Ground breaking ceremonies were held October 3, 1948. The first service held was the Watch Night service on New Year’s Eve. An addition was built while Reverend Berkner was pastor. After Reverend Berkner resigned, Reverend C. J. Hay became pastor. Under his ministry a parsonage was built on Harper Road and property was purchased for the Brodhead Christian and Missionary Alliance Church. Also during Reverend Hay’s ministry, the mortgage on the Wireton Church was burned. With the resignation of Reverend Hay in February 1966, Reverend J. G. Allison became pastor in May of 1966.
– History of Wireton C. & M. A., Dedication Service Brochure, March 31, 1967
Reverend Jack G. Allison served as pastor until 1980. The Wireton Christian and Missionary Alliance Church looked forward to its new building (View 1965 Bulletin Announcing Land Purchase).
Bigger and Better
On Sunday August 6th, 1967, the ground breaking ceremony for the newly erected Brodhead Christian and Missionary Alliance Church commenced (view the Ground Breaking Ceremony Bulletin).
The Reverend J. G. Allison, pastor of the Wireton Christian and Missionary Alliance Church, turned the first shovel of dirt on the site. Attending the ceremony, from left to right, were pastor Allison’s wife; R. L. Burns, church trustees chairman; Shirl Dean, chairman of the board of directors, and Reverend F. Paul Henry, superintendent of the Western Pennsylvania District of the Christian and Missionary Alliance churches.
Construction on the site was started in September 1967, and the work progressed rather quickly.
In October 1967, it was reported (see above) that the church was expected to be completed and ready for use by the middle of January, 1968. This labor of love was rapidly becoming a reality for the Wireton Christian and Missionary Alliance congregation.
On Sunday, March 31st, 1968, the new Brodhead Christian and Missionary Alliance Church was dedicated at 3:00 PM (view the Dedication Service Brochure). This major undertaking took less than seven months to go from start to finish. This was no small undertaking, either in work, or finances. It cost $125,000 US in 1967 to build the church. In today’s dollars, that would be almost U.S. $900,000.
The financial faithfulness of the congregation provided more than the necessary funds to both pay for the church and keep the church operational. During the first decade of the church providing spiritual guidance to the Hopewell community, the congregants needed more space to engage with the community, and decided that they needed additional space to fellowship and provide service.
On Sunday June 20th, 1976, the church broke ground for a new Fellowship Hall. In attendance were F. Paul Henry of Punxsutawney, PA, the C&MA District Superintendent (shown here turning over the first shovelful of earth). Others who attended (from left) included the Reverend J. G. Allison, the pastor of the church; Joseph Naugle of Wireton, PA, the treasurer; Mrs. Ilo Waugh from South Heights, the financial secretary; Raymond L. Burns of Hopewell Twp., secretary, and David Harris of Hopewell Twp., the missions treasurer.
The new structure would be used for Sunday School, and the junior church departments. It should be noted that, by the grace of God, this building was paid for – in full – in less than four months. The hall was built to accommodate all of the new believers. A bus ministry was in full swing, and the classrooms in the original Brodhead Alliance Church building were too small to accommodate everyone who attended the services.
- In 1980, Reverend George Richter became the new pastor of Brodhead Alliance Church.
Let no debt remain outstanding, except the continuing debt to love one another, for whoever loves others has fulfilled the law. – Romans 13:8
Free yourself, like a gazelle from the hand of the hunter,
like a bird from the snare of the fowler. – Proverbs 6:5
God was very gracious to the congregation, and the congregation was very generous in their giving. This enabled the church to pay the mortgage off well before the end of the mortgage.
On Sunday February 22nd, 1981, the church held a mortgage burning service to give glory to The Lord God Almighty who, in His perfect timing and provision, provided mightily for the church financially so that it could become debt-free. God has been faithfully providing ever since, and the church has been able to be a great financial supporter for International Workers (missionaries).
- In 1982, Reverend Thomas Rowett took the reins of the Brodhead Christian and Missionary Alliance Church. He pastored the church until 1989.
- In 1989, Reverend Ronald Bublat became church’s new pastor. He pastored the church until 1990.
- In 1991, Reverend David Muir became the pastor. He pastored the church until 2010.
- In 2010, the Brodhead Alliance Church and the Hopewell Alliance Churches joined together to form a new congregation at 1881 Brodhead Road, now Christ Alliance Church. For several months, services were conducted by various pulpit supply pastors and laymen. Several candidates were sent by the C&MA District for review.
- In 2011, Reverend Palmer Zerbe was called to be the pastor of this newly formed congregation. Pastor Zerbe retired (for the second time!) in 2016 at the age of 83. Between Pastor Zerbe’s retirement and January 2017, services were conducted by various pulpit supply pastors and laymen. Several candidates were sent by the C&MA District for review.
- In January 2017, Reverend Paul Yanchek was called by the elders to be the new pastor of Christ Alliance Church. He was officially installed as the new pastor on February 19th, 2017 at 3:00 PM (view the Installation Service Bulletin).
God has great things planned for our church:
14 What good is it, my brothers, if someone says he has faith but does not have works? Can that faith save him? 15 If a brother or sister is poorly clothed and lacking in daily food, 16 and one of you says to them, “Go in peace, be warmed and filled,” without giving them the things needed for the body, what good is that? 17 So also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead…26 For as the body apart from the spirit is dead, so also faith apart from works is dead. – James 2:14-17,26
8 For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God- 9 not by works, so that no one can boast. 10 For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do. – Ephesians 2:8-10
“Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever believes in me will also do the works that I do; and greater works than these will he do, because I am going to the Father.” – John 14:12
“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” – Jeremiah 29:11
Our building’s 50th Anniversary Service is coming this summer! Please join us as we celebrate fifty years of faithful ministry in service to Jesus Christ at our 1881 Brodhead Road location. We are certain that God has even greater plans to glorify His name through us as we press forward towards Christ’s Directive under the leadership of Pastor Paul Yanchek:
18 And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19 Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” – Matthew 28:18-20
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