Church History (1956-1996)

Table of Contents

Ruch Community Bible Church: A History (1956-1996)

40th Anniversary

“Christ is the Answer Yesterday, Today, and Forever”

Introduction and Acknowledgment by Logan & Nicki Bell, March 3rd, 1996

In creating and compiling this book, our goal was to summarize the history of the last 40 years of Ruch Community Bible Church. The deeper we got into this project the more we realized that we had barely scratched the surface of all the human interest stories, ministries, and events that have taken place here at Ruch over the years. It has also made us much more aware of how important it is to constantly be writing down and taking pictures of our church life as it happens. So quickly we forget! But, in our limited time, we have attempted to provide a brief overview of dates, stories, testimonies and pictures, etc. that have made up these 40 years.

In the past few weeks, we have dug through numerous old church record books, board meeting notes, and annual business meeting notes. We have also had many conversations with people who have been here for a number of years. We appreciate the oral input and pictures we received from Earl and Doreene Best, Vernie Hall, and Billie Joe and Joan Hunter about those early years of the church. Vernie also did a great job of digging up many addresses of members who have moved away from the area.

A big thank you also goes to the many people who took the time to contribute to this endeavor. Connie Fowler researched the "Early Years," and much of her work was derived from Earl Best's memoirs. Regina Mainwaring searched diligently to come up with dates and events that occurred during the "Middle Years," plus a few cute stories of her own. Sonny and Sandy Falls and Carolyn Koop shared about their early beginnings here at Ruch Church. Pastor Ron, amid his busy schedule of preparing for the Israel trip, was able to contribute some of the highlights of the "Latter Years."

Additionally, we have the testimony of Jack and Patty Robinson who have more recently become Christians. If time and space had allowed, we could have created volumes with all of your stories and testimonies.

This church has touched our own family's life, and we can think of no other church where we would want our children to grow up. Ruch Community Bible Church reminds us personally of the song that says, "We have a warm family feeling here, in the presence of the Lord." We truly feel that we are part of a family and that you are like brothers and sisters to us.

So, enjoy this brief history of Ruch Community Bible Church. This church has really been a shining light to this community, and many lives have been changed because of what the Lord has done through the work started in 1956. May God continue to bless Ruch Community Bible Church as we work together until He comes.

Senior Pastors

March 4, 1956-1963 : Rev. Earl Best

1963-1964: Rev. Earl Mortlock

1964-1976: Rev. Lester Stephens

1977-1978: Rev. Dick Kelso

1978-1982: Rev. Lester Stephens

1982-Present: Dr. Ron McKay

Associate & Youth Pastors

1973-1978: Rev. Fred DeVos

1979-81: Sonny Falls

1981-1982: Rev. Ron McKay

1987-1995: Rev. Don McKay

1988-1991: Larry Castner 

April, 1996: Daren Croy

The Ruch Community Bible Church Timeline (1956-1996)


- On March 4, the first Sunday School and Church service. 51 total attendance for Sunday School and 42 for Church, the first offering was $12.33.

- In Summer, the first V.B.S. was held.

- In Dec., two acres of land were purchased from Buckley’s to build a church.


- In March, (one year later) Sunday School enrollment was 93 and the offering was $29.40.

- In April, work began on the building.

- Moved into the new building at 190 Upper Applegate Road.

- During the 50's the parsonage was bought for $9,000.

EARLY 60's


- The board agreed to start the chapel with money available in the building fund.


- Rev. Earl Best resigns from the pastorate.

- Rev. Earl Mortlock becomes pastor until 1964.


- In Oct., Rev. Lester Stephens became Sr. Pastor.


- In April, the congregation moved into the new chapel on Easter Sunday.

- In May, the dedication of the new chapel at 3:00 pm.


- Baptistry completed - painting by Brenda Meador.

- Kindergarten begun under Carolyn Koop.


- Sold Parsonage (Old Capt. Ruch House).


- In August, Fred DeVos became Young Adult & Visitation Minister.

- Bought bus and began bus ministry.


- Drafted plans and began building funds for the new Addition of Fellowship Hall and basement Sunday School rooms.

- Added preschool to Kindergarten.


- Began new addition.


- All-Church 4th of July Bi-Centennial Picnic.

- In December, Pastor Stephens resigned.


- Christine Harr Memorial Library began; Regina Mainwaring, Librarian.

- Separate Preschool from Kindergarten started.

- In March, the first board of Elders met; Ed Crook, Pres.

- In May, Rev. Dick Kelso became Senior Pastor.

- In August, Rev. Fred DeVos took a 1-year sabbatical.

- In the Fall, the new addition was completed; finish work remained.


- In March, Women’s Fellowship began; Margaret Kramer, president.

- In May, Rev. Dick Kelso resigned.

- Rev. Fred DeVos resigned.

- In Dec., Rev. Lester Stephens became Senior Pastor.


- Name changed from Ruch Community Church to Ruch Community Bible Church.

- First Board of Deaconess met; Gertrude Laun, Pres.

- In October, Sonny Falls became Youth Pastor; Paul Ryan Children’s Pastor.


- In February, Awana began under Paul Ryan.

- Large lighted sign installed on lawn, Duvol Memorial.


- In June, Rev. Ron McKay became Associate Pastor.

- Back picnic area developed.


- In June, Rev. Ron McKay became Senior Pastor.


- Finish work completed on the new addition.


- In August, Day Care added along with Preschool under Sharon Thompson.


- In June, Rev. Don McKay became Youth Pastor.


- Former members Larry and Barbara Castner joined our staff. Larry as an associate pastor and Barbara as daycare director and director of women’s ministries.


- In Dec., the congregation approved a new building program sanctuary expansion.

- New keyboard and sound system for sanctuary.


- Remodeling of the daycare kitchen and other areas.


- Larry & Barbara Castner resign and join Wycliffe Bible Translators at JAARS in North Carolina.

- Monica Offenbacher becomes the new daycare director.

- Phase I (foyer project) began of the remodeling.


- Phase I&II (courtyard project) completed of the remodeling.


- Phase III work began with an architect.


- In March, went to two morning services.

- Our Pastor Ron becomes Dr. Ron, completing a doctorate of ministries program from Dallas Theological Seminary.

- Don and Sharla get married.


- Debbie McGuire becomes the new daycare director.

- In the fall, a new Wednesday night family program began.

- Computer system purchased for the church.

- New bookstore completed.

- Jim McClelland (member of this church) serves a summer internship following his 1st year at Multnomah Bible College.

- Rev. Don McKay resigns and becomes Senior Pastor at Gold Beach First Baptist.


- Ruch Community Bible Church celebrates its 40th year.

- In March, 17 members are touring Israel with Dr. Ron.

- In April, Daren Croy will join the staff as associate pastor.

The Beginnings, A Church is Born

“He who has begun a good work in you will see it to completion.” (Philippians 1:6)

It was the middle 1950s, and after many years without one, God knew it was time to establish a church in Ruch, Oregon. As is often His custom, God uses the insignificant (a tiny community in the Applegate Valley) to show His greatness. He may also choose to work through people, whether they like it or not.

Earl Best didn't know that it was God's time for a church in Ruch, not yet. In August of 1955, fresh, excited young Christians, Earl, and Doreene Best returned to Ruch for a visit from Portland, where Earl attended Multnomah School of the Bible.

"Wouldn't it be nice if the Lord would send us back to Ruch to start a church when we get out of school?" Doreene mentioned casually. Earl had no intention of returning home after school. Convinced that God had plans beyond the small community where he had lived and worked for so long, he chose to ignore his wife's comment.

But, "His ways are not our ways," Earl found out, and when they returned to school, God worked on Earl, and the idea for a church grew. They decided to go home for the weekend in October to look over the possibilities of a church.

Earl knew that one of his professors, Rev. Kehoe, had a lot of experience starting new churches. Breathing a quick prayer, Earl asked Rev. Kehoe if he would go with them to Ruch. "I figured that if God wanted Doreene and me to start a church, He would make it possible for Rev. Kehoe to go." He said he was sorry, but that he had a previous speaking engagement that Sunday and would not be able to go. "I admit I breathed a little sigh of relief," Earl confessed.

"I said, 'Thank you, Lord, now I can feel free not to go to Ruch and start a church.'"

In spite of Earl's reluctance, God went on with His plan. While in his last class of the day, Earl received a note from Rev. Kehoe. "Please meet me in my office after class."

"I have never had a cancellation like this," he told Earl, "but I will be glad to go with you to Ruch."

Earl thought, "Maybe God DOES want us to start a church at Ruch."

Although they told no one why they again visited Ruch that weekend, friends came and asked if they might consider starting a church after they got out of school. Max Butcher said he had been praying for two months that someone would come and start a church. Glenn Hunter said that he had prayed the same.

The Bests remember that "blessing and assurance filled the whole weekend, and they left for Portland with hearts full of anticipation." As they passed the corner where the old Cap Ruch house is, behind the information building on the corner of Upper Applegate and Highway 238, Doreene pointed to the house and said, "That's where the Lord wants us to live." Now, at that time, that house was the biggest and nicest in the Ruch area. Earl seriously doubted that they would ever be able to live in such a nice place and again chose to overlook the comment.

As the Bests let people know of the Lord's leading in their lives, things happened. They were able to rent a small house in Ruch to live in, and the old Ruch store at the intersection of Hwy. 238 and Upper Applegate Road would soon become the first Ruch Community Bible Church.

Though contrary to Earl's idea of going off to some faraway land to minister, after he graduated, Earl and Doreene returned home to start a church. In 1956, they moved into the little, somewhat less than adequate, house they had rented, prepared to start a church, something they knew nothing about, in a rural community of a couple hundred people, where there had not been a church for a long time.

It wasn't long before Doreene asked Earl to inquire about the Ruch house for them to live in. Lee and Maude Port owned the house and explained that they had no intention of selling or renting the place. "By now," Earl said, "I too was convinced that the Lord wanted us to live in the place." They committed it to the Lord and went on about the business of starting a church.

While helping at camp in August, Doreene and I received word that Mr. Port had died. Earl went down to make funeral arrangements and Mrs. Port asked if they still wanted to move into the house. Later, when she moved closer to her family, the Bests moved in. The home later became the church parsonage.

How to Start a Church

How do you start a church? Well, first you get the building ready. They cleaned the old store building, but no target date had been set to begin church. As usual, God's plan rolled along in spite of people. About the middle of February, a knock at Earl's door produced a young man who said his name was "Mort."

"Are you the one who came to start the new church here at Ruch?" he asked. After Earl told him yes, the man said that he was there to help do anything he could. They prayed together in the old store and began immediately to build the pews. "We put together ten long pews, more like benches you would see in a park than pews you would find in a church," Earl remembered. "Each bench would seat about six or seven people each, and three or four that would seat about four."

"When we finished the seating, we began to talk about when to get the church started. I was thinking a few months down the road," Earl, the conservative, said, "but Mort encouraged me to get things started the very next Sunday, which would be the first Sunday in March. I was also thinking we would probably start a small Sunday School and gradually become a full church as people began to show interest, but again Mort thought we should begin as a church with Sunday School, morning and evening services, and a prayer service with Bible study on Wednesday."

This seemed a pretty tall order for a brand new church in an area that wasn't even accustomed to attending church, but the two men prayerfully and faithfully committed the matter to the Lord, who already knew the outcome.

Ruch School principal, Boyd Gibson, arranged for Earl to announce the upcoming services at a P.T.A. meeting on Friday night before that first Sunday. The next day Earl made a few calls to tell some people about the services. "From those few calls the Lord gave us two teachers and a pianist," Earl shook his head in awe. "We were totally unorganized, but God was totally able to put it all together."

"We could not guess what was going to happen Sunday morning, but we were ready to go with whatever the Lord provided," he said. Forty-seven people attended the Worship Service that first day. "I couldn't believe what the Lord was doing right before our eyes."

The Church grew in "Souls and numbers." Only once since the first day did attendance drop below that beginning number.

The Building Fund

Buck Reed attended Ruch Community Bible Church. Buck worked as a cat skinner in the woods for the Hunter and Best sawmill at Ruch. "Soon after starting the church, Buck came and handed me $4.00, which he said he wanted to use to start a building fund for the new church that we would someday build," Earl remembered. Mildred Smith, then treasurer of the new church, put that $4.00 aside for the new building fund. Not long after, Earl made the announcement on Sunday that $4.00 grew to $1,000, and they began to look for property.

The church leaders committed the matter to the Lord and agreed on a nice piece of land next to the school. The piece was 3 acres, and they wanted 300 ft. of road frontage. The elderly Buckleys owned the property and when approached informed them that they were Roman Catholic. Earl said, "They listened to us anyway."

Soon the Buckleys gave Earl their answer. "When I arrived, they told me that they had sold two acres across the road for $600.00 an acre. They also said that the property we wanted was considered to be worth more," Earl went on. "I was beginning to feel a little anxious." The Buckleys went on to say that they would sell 2 acres and give 300 ft. frontage. Even though they thought the property was worth more than that across the road, they would sell the 2 acres for $600.00. "I think I breathed a sigh and offered thanks to the Lord," Earl grinned. "They then told me they liked what we were doing for the young people in the area and would like to return $100.00 to the church for use with the youth of the Community. He truly had done great things!"

Well driller, Virgil Gribble, drilled a well for under $400.00. "God supplied us with $1,000 for the beginning of the new church, and it was the exact amount we needed for the property and the well."

"We never made an appeal for funds for the building program, only a mention that there was a building fund to which people could give if the Lord laid it upon their heart to do so."

Earl told how the fund grew as the church building began. When the brush and trees were cleared, Hunter and Best Sawmill donated a D-8 tractor and an operator to finish the work on the land and dig a basement. "When that was done, there was enough money in the fund to pour the cement for the walls of the basement," Earl remembered. "Then, we began to really see the power of God at work," he went on excitedly, "for when the walls were poured, there was enough money to pour the floor of the basement, and when that was done there was enough to put the floor over the top of the basement. 

We planned to meet in the basement once it was covered until we had enough money to continue. However, by the time the floor was installed over the basement, there was enough money to start the superstructure. Vernice Hall remembered how people responded immediately when a need was announced. And so it went until the first part of the building was completed, and they moved into the new church in 1958.

The Bests faithfully served Ruch Community Bible Church as pastor until 1963. They continue to serve in many ways today.

At the time the church began, there was a Sunday School at McKee Bridge. Vernice Hall and Mrs. Port were the only teachers. When Vernice heard about the church at Ruch, she decided to move the Sunday School there since Ruch needed teachers and her kids needed a place to meet.

It worked! Vernice started Jr. Church for ages 3 years old through first grade. Earl picked up Sunday School kids in a Volkswagen bus from McKee Bridge, Copper, and Ruch.

People were used to Sunday School, so when the church opened and worship services started, those who went to Sunday School left and went home. A whole new group came to the service. It took some time for folks to get in the habit of attending both.

Vernice Hall wrote this fond recollection of church "politics" in the early days:

"I remember when the church was young and we were meeting in the store building. In those days, you became chairman of a committee or head of a department in one of two ways. First, you saw the need, made the suggestion, and got the job. Second, someone else saw the need, made the suggestion, and since you were not present at the time to defend yourself, YOU got the job. So, by virtue of the second way, I became Program Chairman.

Our first Christmas program was 'The Three Gifts of Christmas.' The stage in the old store building was large enough to allow movement and props. There were two small rooms off the stage. One was well-lighted and had a window, while the other was a bit drafty and dark. It doubled as a woodshed.

Next, we built the first part of the church. The stage was smaller and had one entrance at the back, but it had good lights and no drafts. We enjoyed many good programs from that stage.

Finally, our building program got underway, and the men of the church worked very hard and faithfully to get our present stage ready. Not completely finished as we know it today, but in usable condition. We were able to sing and perform our praises to a risen Savior in an Easter program."

Vernice's Founder's Day reflection is true today as well: "Many changes have come about over the years. Many of our people have moved to new locations, gone to be with the Lord, or sadder still, have not continued to walk with the Lord. But 'Praise The Lord!' Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever."

In the early days, Sunday School Superintendents and teachers were elected offices. The Sunday school grew to an average of 90 attending in the early sixties.

A Poem by Emma Leach

It's a church that's well worth seeing,

It brings glory to the Lord.

It was built with loving labor

And by faith in God's dear Word.

Testimonial by Connie Fowler (1996)

Our church at Ruch has always been a people's church. Volunteers helped build and maintain the physical part of the church and they still do. Dedicated pastors, elders, deacons, and deaconesses, along with the unseen hands that faithfully serve day after day, maintain the spiritual part.

At a membership meeting in 1964, members agreed that "we need to get our building done as a testimony to this community." They did, and it has, along with the people who reach out to those in need, both physically and spiritually.

The Story of Sonny and Sandy Falls

How did Sonny and Sandy end up in the community of Ruch?

Right in the middle of the Hunter-Best clan, Sonny goes back to his ship and onto Japan to finish the rest of his tour of duty of 4.5 months. After several months, through the urging of their Avon lady, a young girl by the name of Carolyn Koop goes to see Sandy. The three—Ron, Carolyn, and Sandy—become friends, and upon Sonny’s return to the community, he and Ron became good friends.

In God’s perfect timing, in the fall of 1968, both couples became Christians through the witnessing of various families in the community and the ministry of Pastor Stephens.

Besides the Hunters, another neighbor was Earl Best, who at that time was Director of Wilderness Trails. Service for Christ is the bottom line of what Christ wants for His church. Wilderness Trails Ministry, with troubled youth, provided an introductory service for Christ to a new believer and was a major contributing factor in the maturing of many Ruch Community Bible Church members. The church benefited greatly from the results.

This time period was a time of great growth and a time of great departure. It was a time of great happiness and great turmoil too. In any relationship, happy times bring contentment; tough times need and require commitment. Many of us grew closer and more committed to Christ and each other.

Those times at R.C.B.C. taught us many things; one thing is, there is joy during hard times, as Paul wrote to the Philippians, and that we press on to stand firm in the Lord.

After a 30-year span, all four are active members of their community church. The Koops in a church in St. Helens, Oregon, and the Falls remain at Ruch.

Life indeed has taken many turns and directions for the couple from Ohio. Yet, the Lord had a calling for this couple, to become Christians and serve until His return or their homegoing.

Indeed, the Ruch Community Bible Church has played a major part in that calling and continues to do so in the lives of many in our community.

The Parable of the Talents Experienced in the 20th Century by Regina Mainwaring

Early in 1974, we decided to build a new addition consisting of Fellowship Hall, a kitchen, and an enlarged foyer upstairs, along with several Sunday School rooms and two bathrooms downstairs. As a country church, we had some unique ways of funding this project.

Some members donated trees for lumber, and others donated the use of their bulldozers or backhoes for preparation work. Sometimes cattle were sold and the proceeds donated.

The most creative was the "Pastor's Plan," whereby Pastor Stephens loaned up to $10 per child or $20 per adult in increments of $5. We were to start a project with the money and, in 3 months, return the principal and donate the gain to the building fund. Martha O'Day made cookies, Cheryl Stephens sold greeting cards, Connie Koop made magnets, Ron Koop put a down payment on a rototiller and tilled gardens, Alice Eaton made neckties, someone did sign painting which later grew into a business, and I made and sold tapes of pioneer Christine Harr reading scripture. It was a very successful venture, not only helping fund the building but also illustrating the parable of the talents.

A fundraiser for the youth group was a rodeo held at the Roeloff Ranch. Everyone had a great time, and there were many activities, but I personally remember the pie-eating contest which I won and received a cream pie. Some individuals offered to donate money to the building fund if I would throw the pie in Associate Pastor Fred DeVos's face. Since it was for such a good cause, I complied!

Living and attending church in Central Point, we heard an announcement one Sunday that the Ruch Church was dedicating its new chapel on May 9th. Unable to attend that event, we visited a Sunday evening service soon after, where we were warmly greeted. We had two foster boys, ages 10 and 13, and from then on, they bugged us to start attending Ruch Church full-time as people there were allowed to wear cowboy boots and jeans! Six years later, we began as God allowed us to move next door to the church.

The Latter Years, By Dr. Ron McKay (1996)

This decade started out with some real excitement. Dr. Howard Hendricks, a long-time Professor of Christian Education at Dallas Theological Seminary, spoke at our Easter Sunday morning service.

Don McKay, the brother of Pastor Ron McKay, who had previously interned with us, was graduating from Dallas Theological Seminary in May! Our church stepped out in faith and welcomed Don as our new, full-time staff member to work, especially with our young people. That summer was busy preparing the southwest corner of the church property for Don’s new mobile home.

Two new staff members (volunteers) were added this year. Larry Castner (Assistant to the Pastor) and his wife Barbara (Director of Women's Ministries and Day Care Director) had just graduated from Multnomah School of the Bible and came to our church with real enthusiasm and gifts.

Pastor Ron was commissioned as a Chaplain in the Oregon Army National Guard, ministering to soldiers in Ashland, Medford, Grants Pass, and Roseburg.

In 1989, something really dramatic took place in our church through eight different Home Bible Studies. As a result of many new conversions to Christ, twenty-four people were baptized upon their professions of faith! This gave some new life and growth to our church family. A new building program was launched to add more room to the sanctuary and foyer areas. A new sound system and keyboard were installed to enhance our services.

A college-age Bible Study was started at the Lesh home. In the youth department, eight kids received Christ as their Savior.

In 1990, our daycare was really experiencing growth under Barbara Castner’s leadership. The kitchen received new cabinets and fixtures as well as new flooring and carpeting throughout the daycare.

The next year, the Castners were led by God to join Wycliffe Bible Translators at the JAARS Center in North Carolina. Our Church commissioned them to this ministry and faithfully supported them as our very own. Monica Offenbacher became our new Day Care Director.

Through many gifts, $30,000 was raised for our Building Program. The most creative idea came from Billie Joe Hunter. He offered to raise feeder calves for six months as his contribution. He asked people to purchase them and give the profit to the building fund. Seven calves were purchased for about $350.00 each, and they more than doubled in value. They were sold, and fourteen young calves were purchased. In the end, about $11,000 was donated to the Building Fund. No one who bought an original calf wanted their principal returned!

As a result, Phase I of our Building Program was begun—the expansion of the foyer with new double doors going into the Chapel at the cost of about $30,000. This also included new carpeting and remodeling of the existing foyer and a new roof on the south side of the Chapel.

In 1992, Phase I was completed as well as a new courtyard and landscaping. Twenty people were baptized as Home Bible Studies continued to flourish. Pastor Don McKay returned from 25 days in Israel and shared with the congregation his enthusiasm for all he had learned.

The next year, plans were completed for the expansion of the sanctuary to seat 382! Overcrowding was still a concern as the church was full, with chairs being used on occasion. On March 20, 1994, we decided to have a new Sunday schedule: early morning Worship Service and Children’s Learning Center from 9:30-10:35 am, followed by a twenty-minute fellowship time with refreshments, concluded by a second Worship Service from 10:55-12:00 noon.

That same year, Don and Sharla were married in Portland, and many made the trip to attend the wedding.

Pastor Ron McKay finally (1984-1994) completed his Doctor of Ministry Degree at Dallas Theological Seminary. A Sunday night celebration was planned after Ron and Martha returned from graduation exercises in Dallas.

1995 was the year of change. Debbie McGuire assumed the daycare Director's duties. A new Wednesday night program for the whole family was begun. Our own Jim McClelland served as our summer intern youth pastor. A new bookstore was opened in the church to minister to the congregation. A new computer system was purchased to update the church office.

The biggest change was Pastor Don’s call to become the new Senior Pastor of the First Baptist Church in Gold Beach, Oregon. We said goodbye on November 1 to him and Sharla, after almost nine years of faithful youth ministry to our congregation.

This current year, 1996, as well as the future, holds some real excitement in serving the Lord together. A new Associate Pastor, Daren Croy, and his wife, Heidi, will start their ministry with us on April 1. From March 10-24, Pastor Ron will lead a group of 17 people from our church to Israel and Jordan to study the Land of the Bible. Pastor Ron and his son Dan will visit our missionaries, Rob and Jan Culton and their family, in Malaga, Spain, on their return.

This story is a continuation of the Book of Acts as the gospel spreads to the "uttermost parts of the earth"—Ruch, Oregon! And God is not finished yet "while we wait for the blessed hope—the glorious appearing of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ..." (Titus 2:13).

Testimonial by Patty and Jack Robinson, God is Still Changing Lives in the 1990s

During the summer of 1989, we made a trip to Southern Oregon to check out the area and decide if that was where we wanted to move. We fell in love with the Applegate Valley, and while driving up Upper Applegate Road, our attention was drawn to the Ruch Community Bible Church. We both commented that if we moved here, we could go to that cute country church with our family. We went back to Southern California and started to make plans for our move.

After years of stress, anxiety, wandering, and a life without God, we both gave up our careers in California and decided to move to Oregon. In August 1990, our home sold right away, and we were off to Oregon (little did we know at the time that the Lord had all the plans underway in our life and that He was with us all the way, even though we were not with Him).

Jack was offered three jobs before we moved and also was able to pass his State Licensing exam before our move, which gave us the comfort of knowing he at least had a job. We did not know a soul and did not even have a house to rent until our property was ready. We moved to Applegate in December 1990 and began our life in the country.

We purchased our business in April 1992. After eighteen months of struggling, financial problems, and almost losing our business, Jack rededicated his life to the Lord. Having come to the end of his rope, he humbled himself and asked the Lord into his heart.

At that time, we were not attending a church but were beginning to read the Bible. Due to the financial situation at our business, I was forced to go back to work full-time, and I had to look at options for childcare for our two children. Again, we were drawn to the Ruch Community Bible Church and the Day Care facilities.

I went to visit the daycare and knew that it was the environment in which I wanted my children to be in. Matthew and Lauren would come home asking questions about God, Jesus, and the Bible. Having never even read the Bible, I could not answer these questions. I would send them to their father for answers.

We were feeling compelled to start going to church, and since our children felt comfortable at the daycare, we decided to try the Ruch Community Bible Church. We started going to the church on Easter Sunday, 1994. We felt such a warm welcome from the congregation and really liked the message Pastor Ron was giving. I remember having the desire to go again. Jack and I would have questions that we wanted to ask Pastor Ron, and every Sunday, his sermon was on that particular question (my, how the Lord knows our needs).

Pastor Ron invited us to attend a Bible Study at the Mabry’s house, and we began to learn more and more of God's word. I dedicated my life to Jesus on May 22, 1994, at the end of Pastor Ron’s sermon that morning when he asked if anyone wanted to live their life for Jesus.

We have been hooked on Jesus ever since. The Lord has been so faithful to our family and our business. Our faith continues to grow more and more each day. Thank you to our church family and Pastor Ron for allowing us to become part of this wonderful family.


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