Gogginsville UMC History

Our History

Gogginsville United Methodist Church


           As you take the time to read about our shared history, we hope you will gain a sense of the hope, faith, and courage of those who helped to found our church.  We are blessed to have the buildings in which we worship, play, plan, learn, and fellowship, however, the church is more than its buildings.  The power of the church lies in its people’s connection to God.   We can learn something about being connected to God from our history, but our learning must not cease there.  Stories about the past are told to help us in the present.  May this history teach about our past as a congregation and create a hunger to grow into the future.



On September 25, 1855, for the sum of $10.00, Meshack and Lucy Chitwood Griffith deeded one acre of land on the Lynchburg Road to Skelton T. Helm, Greenbury Griffith, John D. Horn, Robert A. Scott and Lewis H. Turnbull in trust for the use of the Methodist Episcopal Church South.  The deed to this land stated, “they shall erect and cause to be built thereon a house or place of worship for the use of the members of the Methodist Episcopal Church South, and when not occupied by the Methodist, other orthodox Ministers can have the use of said house or place of worship.”  The deed also gave water rights to the church, “…with the use of the woods water and right of way to said water in the holler (sic) near said lot of land.”


The church was named either in honor of Rev. Thomas Goggin, who is thought to have been the first minister, or for the community bearing the same name.


The original church, erected by Thomas Hawkins and Ned Withers in 1855 and 1856, was a 24x30 feet, one-room log sanctuary with a balcony and two separate front entrance doors.  In the early years, the left door was for the men who sat on the left side of the church, and the right door was for the women and children who sat on the right side. The building remained the same for about eighty-five years, with the exception that sometime during this period the logs were covered with white weatherboard.

In 1940, the balcony was converted into two Sunday school rooms and windows were added to the front just above the two separate entrance doors. 

An addition was built in 1947 to the rear of the church, which contained a basement, a kitchen on the ground level and two classrooms on the second level.  A gravel parking lot was also added at this time. 

A coal-fired furnace was installed in 1952 and then converted to oil in the 1970’s. 

On October 12, 1958, a service was held to dedicate a Hammond organ.

 Much planning, fund raising, and construction took place at the church from 1959 to 1968.  

A groundbreaking service was held on May 10, 1959, at 2 p.m., for an addition to the church.  Added to the original building was a new brick sanctuary, featuring an open chancel design, a choir room and pastor’s study on the ground level.  A full basement provided space for seven Sunday school rooms, a nursery, two restrooms and a baptistry.  The original building was enclosed in brick and blended architecturally with the new sanctuary.  A copper covered steeple completed the exterior.  The original sanctuary interior was redone, yet preserved as much as possible.  The balcony was left intact and converted to a library.

On July 26, 1961, for the sum of $400.00,  Henrietta S. Lee, N. B. Hutcherson, Jr. and Ellen L. Hutcherson, deeded 2.08 acres of land to D. E. Wiggington, J. D. Gruver, R. D. Aker, H. D. Jones, Frank D. Wright, and George Walton, Trustees of Gogginsville Methodist Church.  In 1970 and 1971, the church parsonage was built on this property.  Prior to this time, the minister and his family lived in the   parsonage, which was shared with Highland United Methodist Church at Callaway.

An Allen organ was installed in 1978, and in 1980, the church building was fully air-conditioned.

During the years of 1980 to 1983, under the leadership of a youth-and- community-oriented congregation, a recreation and fellowship building was constructed on the property across the road from the church.  This building features a basketball/volleyball court, a kitchen, restrooms equipped to serve the needs of the handicapped, and a storage room.  This building was made possible by a bequest from the estate of Willis and Mae Chitwood Cheatham.  Mae Cheatham was a descendant of Richard Chitwood, a brother of Lucy Chitwood Griffith, from whom the original land for the church was purchased.

 Major renovation of the sanctuary took place in 1994 with the enlargement of the choir loft, addition of new choir chairs, and installation of a public address system.  A handicapped restroom on the main floor of the church and a ramp to the front door were also added. 

 A Christmas gift to the community was initiated in December 1990 with the Drive-Through Nativity, which portrays the birth and life of Jesus.  This has become an annual event and involves all of the church families and community to make it possible.

 The church acquired approximately four acres of adjourning land on December 18, 1997, with the purchase of the David Carter Agee and Nancy B. Agee property for $90,000.00.  A house, with a garage, and a cabinet shop were located on this land.  The cabinet shop was torn down in the spring of 2000.

Money, in the amount of $86,000 to purchase this land, was borrowed in December 1997 from Microwave Telecommunications  Repair,  Inc.,    which   is  owned by Ronald and Mary Kellogg.  On November 19, 1998, the Kelloggs canceled the debt owed to Microwave Telecommunications.

In 1999, a summer children’s program, “All God’s Children are Promise Builders,” was started.  The children planned and helped to construct and dedicate a new playground near the recreation building.  A grant from the Virginia United Methodist Conference was received to fund this program.


                             PASTORS 1855-2000 

Following is a list of pastors, with dates of service and other information, for Gogginsville United Methodist Church.  Sources for this information include:

·         a handwritten list (compiler unknown) of ministers with some dates of service

from 1855 to 1985 which was found in the church history folder

·         the Social Security Death Index

·         the Virginia Methodist Conference list of pastors

·         Rev. Bob McAden

·         Sandra at the Danville District Office

·         Franklin County Virginia, A History by Marshall Wingfield

·         Franklin County Churches  Part B  from Various Sources


                        Rev. Thomas Goggin                             1855

                                    Rev. Goggin is not found in the list of deceased ministers of the Virginia Annual Conference.  However there is a record of a Rev. Thomas Clark Goggin in Bedford County as a Baptist minister during this time period, and the deed stated that other ministers could use the church when not used by the Methodist.  Perhaps the ministers listed below with no dates were of other denominations.


Rev. W. M. St. Clair                               1855-1864


Rev. Bedford B. Shelton                                    1864-1866

                                    d. April 6, 1866, age 35

                                    Member of Virginia Conference M.E. Church South

                                    Buried in the St. Clair-Shelton Cemetery off of Iron Ridge Road


Rev. William (Billy) Beach


Rev. Andrew Boone

                                    Rev. Boone was a native of Franklin County


                        Rev. James Herbert Moss

                                    died March 25, 1948


                        Rev. Harry Green


                        Rev. Carson

                                    Estmus Virgil Carson served in Rocky Mount c. 1893 and died March

                                    16, 1935.  No first name is given in the Gogginsville records.


                        Rev. Cranberry


                        Rev. Jordan


                        Rev. Thomas Granville Pullen

                                    died  February 8, 1925


                        Rev. J. K. Rumberg                               1878


                        Rev. Thomas P. Duke                            1878-1880

                                    died  December 26, 1946


                        Rev. W. R. Crowder                               1880-1883

                                    died  January 30, 1917


Rev. John W. Carroll                              1887-1888

                                    died  August 2, 1930 at his home in Rocky Mount, VA


                        Rev. W. L. Doss                                    1888-1889


                        Rev. J. C. Harry                                     1889-1890

                                    died  August 24, 1931


                        Rev. J. H. Pike                                      1890-1892

                                    died  August 10, 1894


                        Rev. S. R. Drewery                                1892-1896

                                    died  February 17, 1917


                        Rev. Robert A. Scott                             1896

                                    born  March 22, 1842  in Loudon County, VA

died  May 12, 1914  at his home in Salem, VA


Rev. James A. Thomas                          1904-1906


                        Rev. R. V. Owens                                  1909-1911


                        Rev. J. W. Marshall                               1911-1912

            There was a John Marshall who served Franklin Charge and died

            October 30, 1938.


                        Rev. O. L. Haga                                                1912-1913

                                    died  December 26, 1959


                        Rev. Kenneth Faust                               1913-1914


                        Rev. John Garland Unruh                       1914-1915

                                    died  May 14, 1947


                        Rev. John R. Bradshaw                         1915-1916

                                    died  February 24, 1974


                        Rev. Thomas Roy Jarrett                       1916-1918

                                    born  April 27, 1895

                                    died  April 11, 1974  Richmond, VA


Rev. Herbert W. Landrum                       1918-1920

                                    born  April 14, 1898

                                    died  April 18, 1970  Richmond, VA


                        Rev. C. P. Heffner                                 1920-1921


                        Rev. John W. Carroll                              1921-1922

                                    died  August  2, 1930


                        Rev. William L. Jones                            1922-1923

                                    died  April 8, 1931


                        Rev. M. O. Harvell                                 1923-1924


                        Rev. N. C. Turner                                   1924-1926

                                    died  October 16, 1938


                        Rev. George W. Amos                           1926-1927

                                    born  March 10, 1901

                                    died  June 24, 1968    Norfolk, VA


                        Rev. Earl R. Collie                                 1927-1928

                                    died  May 10, 1992


                        Rev. Charles T. Boyd                             1928-1932

                                    born  May 26, 1906

                                    died  April 2, 1988    Northumberland, VA


                        Rev. J. Melvin Trower                            1932-1934

                                    died  November 4, 1989


                        Rev. William B. Estes                            1934-1936

                                    died  April 23, 1987


                        Rev. Irving L. Llewellyn                          1936-1937

                                    born January 26, 1884

                                    died  April 11, 1971    Florida


Rev. E. Lester Hylton                             1937-1941

                                    died  March 4, 1963


                        Rev. Joseph L. Stone                            1941-1942

                                    born  June 12, 1918

                                    died  October 6, 1998    Norfolk, VA


                        Rev. Robert A. Rose                             1942-1946

                                    born  February 27, 1914  

                                    died  February 7, 1992


                        Rev. B. M. Beckham                              1946-1948

                                  died  September 30, 1957


Rev. Samuel F. Fridley                          1948-1949

                                    died  March 19, 1964


Rev. R. E. Murphy                                 1949-1953

                                    died  May 27, 1982


Rev. Lester W. Hall                                1953-1956


                        Rev. Hobert Wolfe                                 1956-1960

                                    died  May 20, 1980


                        Rev. Melvin Forren                                June 1960-January 1961

                                    died  March 1975   Greenbrier, WV


                        Rev. Gaynor C. Shepherd (Geneva)        February 1961-June 1962


Rev. Charles P. Price                             1962-1964

died October 1, 2000                       


                        Rev. Wade L. Sirk  (Phyllis)                    1964-1972


Rev. H. Frederick Edge (Alice)               1972-1974

                                    died July 4, 2003                       

Rev. C. Eugene Meek (Sue Ann)            1974-1979


Rev. W. Joseph Winfree (Patti)              1979-1981


Rev. Robert W. Sharp (Marge)               1981-1983


Rev. Steven Greer (Kathy)                      1983-1988


Rev. L. Stanley Wright, Jr.                     1988-1994                              

Rev. Steven R. Creech (Debbie)         1994 - August 1996

Rev. Virgil W. Soots (Jean)                    August 1996-July 1997


                   Rev. I. William Bare                               1997-1999                                

Rev. Brian Sixbey (Shan)                       1999-2004

                   Rev Brad Dulaney (Kim)                         2004-2009

                   Rev. Mark D. Richarson  (Dori)                2009-2014

                   Rev. Kathryn F. Budzik (Anthony)             2014-present