Austin Christian Fellowship turns 30

Published 9:49 am Thursday, August 6, 2009

Austin Christian Fellowship is celebrating 30 years with events this weekend.

The church began in 1979 in homes with three families: Barry and Mary Thompson, Buck and Bev Kershner and Paul and Sue Sunde. ACF was the first of a “Charismatic Renewal” movement in the United States in the 1960s and 1970s.

The church was then housed at the YMCA for the next seven years. They met on Friday nights and had many young attendees. The congregation grew, and they became part of the Apostolic Team Ministries. In 1985, three pastors were ordained to shepherd the congregation.

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In 1987, the church was purchased in a former Christian Science building on the corner of First Street and First Avenue Northwest in Austin. The building is no longer there, but it was located next to Knauer’s Meat market.

In 1991, the moved to the Mower County Senior Center. The congregation grew to more than 200 people.

In 1999, Tom Dearmin gave the church a building at 1110 24th Ave. S.W. For the next three years, the church worked and remodeled the old machine shop into a sanctuary. Phase I was completed; Phase II and III have yet to be completed. Young adults even have a weight room.

After 30 years, Austin Christian Fellowship’s vision is: “Love God, Love Each Other and Spread the Good News of Jesus and His Kingdom.”

Anniversary events will be held at 6:30 p.m. Friday; 10 a.m. and 6:30 p.m. Saturday; and 10 a.m. Sunday with a noon fellowship meal. The celebration will include the original Apostolic Team Ministries team of Roger Pugh, Gary King, Ron King, Joe Cody, Gary Kershner and Bruce Ekern.

Austin Christian Fellowship is located at 1110 24th Ave. S.W. The phone number is 437-6327.