Organized in 1821


Bethany Baptist Church

Burnt  Corn, Alabama

Sept. 28, 2003

Web page and photos
by Ed Williams
Auburn, Alabama


Retired Bethany Baptist pastor, the Rev. John Finklea Sr., delivers the Homecoming sermon

Bethany Baptist Church
Annual Homecoming
Sept. 28, 2003

10:30 a.m.....Dedication of  CSA Marker at Fowler tomb in Church Cemetery

Invocation/Scripture.....Rev. John  Finklea, Sr., former pastor of Bethany Baptist Church

Opening Song....."How Great Thou Art"

Love Offering

Hymn of Preparation....."Because He Lives"

Sermon....."I have Decided to Follow Jesus"

Benediction.....Rev. John Finklea, Sr.

Pianist.....Maria Salter Godwin

Immediately after the ceremony we will have a cake raffle to benefit the church.

 Dinner on the grounds will follow.

The offering today will go to the maintenance of the church and cemetery.
 The church required a new air-conditioning unit this past year.

History of Bethany Baptist Church

The Bethany Church was established in 1821 in nearby Conecuh County; moved to Puryearville (Monroe County) on Camp Ground Creek right outside Burnt Corn in 1846; and then in 1874 built a new building in the town of burnt Corn which is the church's present-day site. 

The second location was where today the African-American Bethany Baptist Church States.  After the War between the States the congregation divided, with the black congregation buying the church. The white congregation moved up the road and built another Bethany.

They also exhumed many of the dead burned behind the church and reburied them at the  new location.  Dr. John Watkins was one of the "exhumed" who was reburied in the Bethany Church Cemetery.  Dr. Watkins was the first physician in this area.  He came to the Tombigbee settlement in 1813, moved to Claiborne in 1817, and moved to Burnt Corn about 1825.  In 1996 the last remaining members donated the church to the Monroe County Heritage Museums.

 In 2000 the Lowrey trust gave the two-acre site to the Museums.



Kathy McCoy, left, Monroe County Heritage Museums director,
and Eugenia Ellis Brown of Brownville, Ala., in Conecuh County.
  Mrs. Brown is a native of Burnt Corn and attended
Bethany Baptist Church as a child.

Dinner on the grounds...

...accompanied by heritage music performed by Jerry Daniel of Burnt Corn

The Rev. John Finklea, Sr. returns thanks before dinner is served.


Thank you...

We would like to thank each of you for being here today on this special occasion.  We thank God for his unfailing love and we extend our love to John Finklea, Sr. and his family.

 Again, thank you and may God bless you.

We are blessed to have with us today Mr. John Finklea, Sr.

Rev. Finklea was the last full-time preacher at Bethany and is fondly remembered by his parishioners.

Monroe County  Heritage Museum
Web site:
P.O. Box 1637
Monroeville, Alabama 36461
(251) 575-7433

Bethany Baptist Church Homecoming
will be held next year on Sept. 26, 2004



Thanks for visiting my Web page

Ed Williams
Department of Communication and Journalism
Faculty adviser, The Auburn Plainsman
Auburn University

313 Tichenor Hall
Auburn University, Ala. 36849