A blog about living in Aberdeen, New Jersey.

Saturday, December 1, 2012

History: Renovation of Second Baptist Church, Matawan (1972)

The 22 Jun 1972 edition of The Matawan Journal included the article below about a planned renovation of the Second Baptist Church of Matawan.

MATAWAN — Plans are underway to modernize the facilities of the Second Baptist Church, 45 Orchard St.

Mrs. Luvenia (Wicker) Wall, 83 years old, a member of the church, though inactive, remembers attending Sunday School in Bissel Hall, the Reform club rooms, and at one time services were held in a schoolhouse on Rabbit Lane. From this congregation began the Berean Baptist Church, located on Jackson St., which was incorporated Apr. 8, 1890. The Seacost Baptist Association of New Jersey was organized in this church.

The congregation needed larger quarters and a church was erected on Orchard St. In April 1894, the name was changed from the Berean to the Second Baptist Church of Matawan. The current pastor is the Rev. Joseph K. Butts, who has been a member of the church since early childhood. William Rice, chairman of the building committee, and Roy Mancel, chairman of the trustees, concluded that in order to meet the needs of the membership and the community it was necessary for the church to be completely modernized.

The modernization will take place in three phases, the first renovating of the exterior of the parsonage and paneling of walls in two rooms. The work on the church will consist of installing brick veneer to the exterior walls and new stained glass windows. The third and final phase will be the landscaping of the church grounds.

Total cost of the project is estimated, at $50,000. The work will be completed at funds become available, but it is hoped that most of the work will be completed prior to Christmas of this year. The architect is Preston C. Moore, Matawan, and contractor, Robert Vargo, Old Bridge.


Given that the Reverend Butts retired in 2000 after serving the church for over 27 years, the above article would have marked the beginning of his ministry. Since he planned major renovations to the building, he obviously started his ministry with a bang.

Reverend Anthony L Hodges filled the vacant pulpit at Second Baptist in 2003, according to the 19 Mar 2003 edition of The Independent.


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