A congregation of the Lord’s church was established in the community north of Athens, Alabama very soon after the beginning of the twentieth century. According to old records, a group of disciples of the Lord’s body began meeting in 1901. The number was few and the offering was small. It was not uncommon for the offering to range from three or four cents to a maximum of fifty cents. Spiritual growth far exceeded financial growth.
Ephesus church of Christ evolved from this small group and some direct descendants of these early pioneers are still a part of the congregation today.
The first name for the congregation was Piney Chapel. Later, the name Oak Grove was chosen. In 1905, the name Swan Hill was used to identify the congregation. The meeting site for services was on Elkton Road, 2-3 miles south of the current location. Sometime in the 1920’s, the church became known as the Ephesus church of Christ and continues to use this name today.
The Old Building
The frame building that still stands at the corner of Piney Chapel Road and Elkton Road was built in 1925. It was located on property that was donated by W. W. and Gertrude Loggins. This building, with the addition of some classrooms, served as the meeting place for the church for almost a half century.
The building was constructed to be the church’s meeting place and was located about one mile south of the current location. The church continued to grow and soon it became necessary to construct a larger building on the same site. During the 1960’s, it became apparent that once again the meeting place and parking were inadequate even though additions had been made to the building.
Due to the faithfulness of the members and the steady spiritual and financial growth, the decision was made to purchase a new building site and construct a church building that would be more suitable. Under the oversight of elders B.L. Rainey, Mike Brooks, and Sam Holt, the plan was put in effect.
In May of 1970, construction began on the new building. Construction was financed by a building fund and the sale of church bonds. The improved accommodations included an auditorium with a seating capacity of about 400, 11 classrooms, a large foyer, an office, and nursery.
The first service in the current building was held on Sunday, October 4, 1970. Several major remodeling projects have been completed in recent years to modernize the facility. The building continues to serve the congregation well today.
We believe that God has blessed us in our endeavors and it is our prayer that everything we do will be in accordance with His will and for His glory.