Bega Baptists celebrating 50th anniversary

Bega's Baptist Church is celebrating 50 years of rich history this weekend.

One of the early congregations of the Bega Baptist Church, taken in 1970. The church is celebrating its 50th anniversary this weekend.

One of the early congregations of the Bega Baptist Church, taken in 1970. The church is celebrating its 50th anniversary this weekend.

On August 30, 1969, the idea of a Baptist congregation went from being a fellowship of like-minded individuals and families in the town to a formally recognised church.

This weekend, the church is inviting the community to be involved as they mark that occasion with refreshments and fellowship on Saturday from around 4.30pm followed by a celebration dinner from 6pm.

Then on Sunday there will be a special anniversary morning service at 10.30am followed by a barbecue lunch.

While the church is not as large as it once was, member Bob Wilton said it is still very active with services each Sunday and regular leisure group lunches and activities.

Bega postmaster John Jamieson reportedly first had the idea to start up a Baptist fellowship in the town in 1963, Mr Wilton said.

Along with several other foundation members, that fellowship grew until it was formally declared a church in 1969.

Mr Wilton said the region took to the idea so well that Cooma, Pambula, Batemans Bay, Moruya and Bermagui Baptist Churches all had their beginnings as outreach services from Bega's.

Mr Wilton said the church used to host kids' holiday programs every September for around 30 years, so there would be many in the community with links and happy memories of the church to share with current members and families this weekend.

Among the notable pastors at the Bega Baptist Church was Anatoly "Tolly" Joloshin, Mr Wilton said.

When he finished in his role in Bega he went to the Ukraine to start a bible college, students of which came back to Bega on occasion to share cultural experiences.

Current pastor Lucas Uhlman has extended an invitation to the wider community to join in celebrations this weekend as the Baptist Church marks 50 years in the community.

For more details, RSVP to Bob Wilton 0414 713 092 or rowindapark@iprimus.com.au.

Bega Baptist Church is located at 17 Meringo St, Bega.

This story Bega Baptists celebrating 50th anniversary first appeared on Bega District News.

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