SOUTH NEWFANE — When the doors of the South Newfane Baptist Church open for summertime services, its 225 years of history will be celebrated.
"It's got a small core group right now of members that I think are seeking to keep the church open at this point," said Rev. Malcolm Hamblett, who will be starting his third summer as minister there.
The Old Home Sunday service on June 5 at 11 a.m. is an annual gathering intended to welcome back families and friends who live in or have moved away from the area. Also invited are people new to the church or those who just want to come check it out. A potluck buffet is held afterwards.
The church is only open from June through August. Weekly services usually start at 10 a.m.
The Baptist Church of Marlboro and Newfane was established in 1791 at the home of Nehemiah Fisher, according to a press release. The first meetinghouse was built in Marlboro on Auger Hole Road, one quarter of a mile from the Newfane town line.
In 1841, the church moved to its present location on Dover Road in South Newfane. In 1912, stained glass windows were dedicated representing local families and their descendants, including the Bruces, Swarts, Goodnows, Bickfords, Baileys and Aldriches.
Hamblett's sermon, "Adopting an Attitude of Gratitude," is inspired by biblical readings from the books of Samuel and Luke.
"I think with a long history of a church like that, we can sometimes get bogged down in the mundane everyday things and forget about how God has blessed us over the years and even the church," Hamblett said. "As Christians, I feel we should have that attitude; being thankful for what God has done for us. That's why I chose that sermon title."
Hamblett has been in the ministry for 20 years. He is director of Christian education at the First Baptist Church of Chester.
"Certainly, everyone is welcome during the summer," he said of the South Newfane services.
Contact Chris Mays at email@example.com or 802-254-2311, ext. 273.