During the late 1930’s a number of people living in the Winterville area were active members of Disciples churches in neighboring communities. In May of 1938, Mr. R.E. Boyd made contact with Rev. C.C. Ware, State Secretary of the Disciples Church, and requested that the organization of a Disciples Church be attempted in Winterville. Arrangements were made for the Rev. C.B. Mashburn to hold services in Winterville during the summer of that year.
The Winterville Christian Church was formally organized in the home of Mr. and Mrs. R.L. Abbott, on October 13, 1938, with 25 charter members. Its newly chosen officers were ordained on the second Sunday in November by Rev. Mashburn, who continued to serve as minister until October 31, 1940. In December 1940, Rev. Perry Case became minister and served in this capacity until August 1956. Since that time have been 9 regular and eight interim ministers.
Services were held rent free in the Methodist Church building until a structure was purchased by the new congregation in February 1944. At the same time a building fund was started. During 1948 this building was moved to the back of the lot in order to clear a site for the new church. Construction was begun on May 5, 1951, and the first service was held on Easter Sunday, April 5, 1953. On June 2, 1857 all mortgage notes were burned. In 1960 a parsonage was constructed, and in 1946 the church’s physical plat was expanded with the completion of a new fellowship facility, Ellis Hall.
Through the years the congregation has actively participated in all areas of church life. Sunday School has been held continuously and there have many youth oriented programs such as Bible School, Christian Youth Fellowship, Chi Rho, and Junior Fellowship. A woman’s Council was organized in 1939 with Mrs. Annie Abbott servicing as first president, and the women’s work has continued without interruption sim that time. Early in 1959 the Christian men’s Fellowship was organized. Beyond its local ministry, the church is actively involved in denominational endeavors ranging from a growing commitment to world outreach, to representation at district, state, national and International meetings.
The church continues to grow both spiritually and numerically. Its membership has evolved from a nucleus of life-time Disciples to a church family with diverse religious backgrounds. Winterville Christian Church celebrated its fiftieth anniversary in October of 1988. The celebration included the dedication of stained-glass windows in the sanctuary which were installed in 1987 and depict the seasons on the church year. We look back to our heritage with appreciation , and at the same time we anticipate a future of expanding vision and service.