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History of Methodism in Leola, PA

posted Sep 4, 2011, 8:35 AM by Steve F   [ updated Sep 4, 2011, 8:39 AM ]

On April 2, 1861, John W. Bender purchased an acre of land from Amos Batten, located diagonally southwest across Route 23 from our present church. On this one acre lot was to be built the first Methodist church in the Leola area. Signers for the deed were Rev. Abram Hook, Samuel R. Trainer, Joseph Cooper, John Binkley, Lewis C. Light, William Hoar, Cyrus Batten, John W. Bender and William K. Bender.

William Bender hauled brick and lumber to the site with his own four-horse team. The brick were made in Leola. William Kreamer was the carpenter. Much of the building was paid for by Mr. Bender himself. A portion of the land in the rear of the church was used as a small cemetery.

Those in attendance at the little church in its early days would gather for Sunday afternoon service of preaching and Bible class. In the evening young people would come from all around the neighborhood because it was the only place of in the area where they could meet to socialize.

It was a small group in these early days of the 1860’s, but it was growing.

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