Woodhaven Christian Church was meeting at Grandview School on St. Rd. 45 W. before the church was built. Woodhaven was organized in the VanBuren township of Monroe County, IN. The Clear Creek and First Christian Churches purchased 13 acres on Leonard Springs Rd. where the church was built. The Mt. Gilead Christian Church also cooperated in the project and contributed money to it. A steering committee (picture to the right), made up of members from the three churches together with members of the new church, were responsible for planning and programming. The Association of Christian Churches in Indiana backed the project and provided initial leadership for it. The Woodhaven charter was signed on October 13, 1968, following which the church was formally organized.
The photo caption to the right reads as follows:
Plans are being made for a new congregation in Bloomington as part of a new church program of the Indiana Association. First church of Bloomington and Clear Creek church recently purchased thirteen acres of wooded land in a new housing development. This was an "over-and-above" program totaling $17,500. Shown here looking at the site, located in Van Buren Park, are, left to right, Cleo Sinn; Howard Anderson, minister of First church; Richard Hittle, minister of Clear Creek; and Kenneth Dillard. 1964
Mid 1960 Clear Creek Christian, First Christian and Mt. Gilead churches of Bloomington purchased 13 acres of land at 3345 Leonard Springs Road and cleaned, cleared and tore down an old house.
G. Lavon Fisher was called on April 27th, 1967 by the Association of Christian Churches in Indiana as the pastor-director of the new church. He visited homes in this area for church members.
October 29, 1967 Sunday School classes started meeting in homes of future members.
February 18, 1968 we started meeting at the Grandview School while plans were finalized to build the church. Woodhaven was the name chosen for the church.
Chartering Service was held October 13, 1968 at First Christian Church. Six members were baptized and 63 members signed the charter.
Ground breaking for the church was March, 1970. Our first service in the church was August 9, 1970. Cornerstone placing was 3:00 pm August 16, 1970. Membership reached 112 by the first of October.
Robert L. Harris, our pastor from 1978-1982, was the major force behind our drive to pay off the church and our Mortgage Burning was held November 16, 1980. On November 21, 1980 our church was destroyed by Arson fire. Our neighbor church, St. Paul Methodist offered their church for our services for the next two months during our rebuilding. January, 1981 we again occupied Woodhaven.
The Clear Creek Christian Church and First Christian Church purchased 13 acres of ground located at 3345 Leonard Springs Road, Bloomington, Indiana.
A steering committee was formed to organize the new church, under the direction of G. Lavon Fisher, the pastor/director, appointed in April 1967.
Due to much interest expressed by area families, classes for Sunday School and church were held in designated homes until arrangements were completed to use a room at Grandview Elementary School for that purpose. Plans were outlined at that time for organizing the church, and a time scheduled for the future building of Woodhaven Church. Members of the church worked together establishing all levels of Sunday School, Christian youth fellowship, and choir.
Upon the appointment of a church treasurer, in July, 1968, the members began handling the finances and business which had been conducted by the state. However, the state continued to aid the church.
After much evangelistic calling and responding, a chartering service was held on October 13, 1968 at First Christian Church. When the charter was closed, 73 persons had signed.
Much organization followed the signing of the charter. A budget was formulated. A nominating committee selected officers of the church which were elected by the congregation. A Christian women fellowship was formed and organized into two circle groups, Faith and Mary Martha. Other committees set up were as follows; Property - Stewardship and Finances; Evangelism and Membership; Christian Action and Community Service; and Christian Education and World Outreach.
After Easter, 1969, a $15,000 building fund campaign was embarked over a payment period of 18 months under the guidance of the Board of Church Extension. Construction of Woodhaven Christian Church was scheduled for Spring 1970.
A study committee and a building plans committee were appointed, and eventually Mr. William J. Strain, the architect, submitted preliminary drawings which were approved by members. The builder, Mr. Donald Rice of Bloomfield, submitted a bid of $59,976.46. This was approved.
Easter, March 29, 1970, a ground breaking ceremony was held. After much cooperation by the members the land was cleared. The church was constructed and eventually dedicated on August 16, 1970. This was a glorious day for all!
Since the retirement of Reverend G. Lavon Fisher in December of 1970, the church has been served by an interim minister Eugene Ogrod, Harvey Wilfred, and our present minister, Mark Richardson.
Our church is comprised of members who exemplify cooperation, share much fellowship, and work diligently to obtain their goal in the Christian way of life.
Karen Sue Fike, Chairman
Evangelism and Membership Committee
Text accompanying the publication of the photo to the left:
Members of Woodhaven Christian Church, Bloomington, IN, recently placed the cornerstone in their new building. Lavon Fisher is the organizing minister for the congregation, which was chartered in October, 1968. The church now has 110 members. From left are; Mr. Fisher; Wilford Acuff; William Batman, past chairman of the General Board; Carl Rothrock, one of the more recent members; and Austin Polley, present board chairman. The Board of Church Extension provided counseling and a building loan for the church.
Rev. G. Lavon Fisher and Mary
Signing of the Charter, 1968 - Pictured left to right are Donna and Wilford Acuff, Linda Underwood, and Nellie Underwood
October 13, 1968 at 2:30 pm at First Christian Church, Bloomington, IN.
Sponsored by Christian Churches of Monroe County. Association of Christian Church of Indiana.
Sunday, November 8, 1970 at 3:00 pm
Signing on October 24, 1980.
On November 16, Woodhaven had a great celebration and burned its mortgage. We were out of debt!
On November 21, 1980 vandals broke into the church and set it on fire. The loss is great, nearly $30,000. Our insurance coverage will cover a majority of the loss. It will be some time before we can replace every item destroyed. Beginning December 14th, our chairperson, Sally Cravens, will be reporting to the congregation on the progress that is being made in the reconstruction of our facilities. There will have to be decisions made weekly that will require congregation approval. Since we don't have a place to meet during the week, all business and reports will be done following worship on Sundays at St. Paul's United Methodist Church. Your presence is very important.
On October 14, 2018, Woodhaven Christian Church observed 50 years of service to the greater Bloomington community. The church's history was showcased each Sunday that month with a photo display as well as interesting articles and events from the past. We have provided Sunday school, Vacation Bible School, Easter Egg hunts, youth group activities, picnics and hayrides, women's fellowship activities, gospel sings, and fund raisers such as holiday bazaars over the years, with full-time and part-time ministers to aid in these endeavors. Our past has been productive, and we look forward to the future.