ATLANTA, GA (ABNS 7/12/17)—The American Baptist Historical Society awarded the George D. Younger Award for Excellence in Local or Regional American Baptist History to the West Henrietta Baptist Church (West Henrietta, NY). Along with a certificate honoring the church, a check for $500 was presented at the July 2 American Baptist Historical Society Biennial Breakfast in Portland, Ore. The name of the church will also go on a plaque in the Historical Society Reading Room.
Chosen from about a dozen entries, West Henrietta demonstrated how they met the criteria, especially in their outreach beyond their congregation. Their year-long celebration resulted in several outcomes which have strengthened the church:
- Established a closer relationship with other community churches (example: Choirs joined for Easter music).
- Built new relationships with former longtime members (example: contacted former members and their families).
- Positioned the church to participate fully in the town’s 2018 bicentennial (example: they developed a working relationship with the town historian, learned their own history and created a permanent History Room in the church).
- Became a resource for the town Historical Society. (see #3)
- Improved the church’s social media presence (example: an updated website and new Facebook page).
- Contributed historic research featured on nyheritage.org and available in local libraries (example: The book with information on Sunday School class members is featured on nyheritage.org).
- Will participate knowledgably this May in New York Landmarks Conservancy’s open house “Stained Glass: Windows on this World and the Next”. (The church now knows the background on its stained glass windows).
For information on how to apply for the next Younger Award (2019), see the ABHS website abhsarchives.org.
Founded in 1853, the American Baptist Historical Society cares for the largest and most diverse collection of Baptist materials in the world and publishes the oldest Baptist historical journal, the American Baptist Quarterly. Researchers come from around the globe to research the contributions Baptists have made to church and society. For more information visit our web site: http://abhsarchives.org/.
American Baptist Churches USA is one of the most diverse Christian denominations today, with approximately 5,000 congregations comprised of 1.3 million members, across the United States and Puerto Rico, all engaged in God’s mission around the world.