Hitchcock's lay pastors explain why 'This is a church on fire for God'
The Hitchcock Church has heard God calling and has answered, "Send me, Lord."
Lay Speakers James and Shirley Farmer are appointed as Supply Pastors at Hitchcock, where worship attendance averaged 31 in 2009.
One member asked what could be done to help a heart-transplant patient and her family. A "Benefit Gathering" for her was organized and raised $18,000.
The rural church in Enid District learned Campbell Soup Co. donates food to organizations that aid the hungry. Members secured a donation and picked up the food in Paris, Texas. They distributed it to people in Hitchcock, Okeene, Watonga, Loyal, Omega, Marlow, Ringwood, and Beaver.
With the products received through the Conference’s "Project Noel" program, the church prepared about 75 Christmas packages for children—and then added food gifts for families.
The former Hitchcock school now serves as a community center. Church members on the center’s board envisioned staging a Christmas play and called for young performers. Initially, 12 youths stepped up. When that number grew to 19 young people, planners chose to present three one-act plays. Children of multiple faiths performed, supported that evening by an attendance of more than 200 people.
The Blaine County Health Department needed baby clothing and blankets. Learning of the need, the church delivered more than 35 sets of pajamas and many blankets, and placed some children’s books in the waiting room at the county health center.
After the earthquake in Haiti, the church voted to donate at least 150 UMCOR emergency health kits.
The Farmers wrote to District Superintendent Gary Holdeman: "This is a church on fire for God. They requested Bible Study every Wednesday night; almost the whole church family comes. It’s a wonderful thing to see them work. They want to make a difference."