In 1856, four years before Abraham Lincoln took the oath of office as President of the United States, a group of eleven men and women decided that what Marshall, IL needed more than anything was a body of believers gathered together as a church; independent from any denominational control. So they established First Christian Church.
Through the years these believers met and worshipped in the Court House, what is now the Unit Office of the Marshall School System, a church building just off the southwest corner of the public square on what is now Locust Street and their present facility located on North Sixth Street. Although facilities have been a have been a blessing through out the years, an environment in which to meet, First Christian has always been the people.
Like other organizations we have built buildings, grown in numbers of people attending, added on to buildings, paid on mortgages, paid off mortgages, and moved locations more than once. (See our Formal History for details.) But the purpose of our church remains the same. We believe that God has called his representatives here on earth. Our challenge is to live in such a way that people understand who Jesus is and can see how He wants everyone to live by the way we live our lives.
This congregation continues to be an independent Christian church. We are governed by elders, served by deacons and led by our staff. We believe in an all-powerful and all-knowing God described in the Bible. (For more about our beliefs, see “What We Believe.”) We also understand that God has called all of us to be ministers and that we are to share the Good News of Jesus, grow in our faith, serve those around us in love and to worship Jesus in all things.
For the past 150 years, the members of FCC have stood and continue to stand as witnesses of God’s faithfulness. He has seen us through wars and depressions, good times and bad. He has been faithful in touching hearts and turning lives around. He continues to show lost people that He cares and He continues to bringing all of us into a closer relationship with Jesus.
As we look back through the years, we cannot name all of the individuals who have given their time, talents and devotion to First Christian Church. And in our final analysis it wouldn’t matter. All that matters is that we lift up Christ and that He receives all the glory for every changed life and every saved soul.
Is this the end of our history? No, not by a long shot. First Christian Church is looking to a very bright future. God is still working through our members on a daily basis. Do we still look like the church that started 150 years ago? No, we have changed in a lot of ways and we will continue to change our methods, but never our message.
If you are interested, please come and worship with us or contact us by calling the church office (217.826.2306). I think you will find a group of people who aren’t very concerned about your past, but are very interested in your relationship with God and your future with Him.