Oak Chapel UMC (a rural church, just East of Marion, IN) has a great United Methodist history! The congregation still worships in the original building, built in 1876. Over the years, this building has touched many lives. It’s hosted all of life’s big events; baptisms, weddings and funerals; many memories for sure!

In 2012, after several years of dreaming, planning and prayer, a building committee was formed. They noted, they were a little surprised at how quickly everything came together after so many years of “talking about it.”

The church basement had always been used for several meals and gatherings throughout the year. Unfortunately, some of the older members simply couldn’t navigate the stairway to the basement, therefore weren’t able to attend many functions. Nor was this space adequate any longer.

They had a big vision to better serve the children and youth of the community. They wanted to expand their Vacation Bible School and needed new space for youth activities.

Expanding Ministries for Generations to Come…

Although they could have easily borrowed funds from a local bank, they contacted the IN UM Loan & Savings Ministry. They found that by working with the Loan Fund, they could save money and be good stewards of the funds their congregation entrusted them with.

After a year of construction, they are just tweaking some final details. The congregation is really enjoying this new space and discussion on implementing new outreach opportunities is underway. Best of all, this new space will make activities accessible to everyone, and they have seen an uptick in attendance already!

Oak Chapel is truly making a difference in their community. It is their hope that they will be able to “reach people in the community, both young and old, and to strengthen their walk with God by having a personal relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ.”