St. Luke's United Methodist Church
Monday, September 25, 2017
The Friendly Church

St. Luke's History

1873 - 2004

 

 

   Between the years of 1871 and 1873, a new congregation of Methodists, along with a new town in a new county with a new railroad and a new school, came into being.  Methodism was alive in the area, and under the leadership of Dr. Isaac Alexander it became active in the new town of
Kilgore, Texas.


   Kilgore Methodists raised $10,000 in 1873, for a new building which became the Alexander Institute, a co-educational high school.  


The Kilgore Methodist Society and the Alexander Institute were inextricably intertwined.  In 1883 a chapel was added to the school.


It later relocated, and became the first home of the Kilgore Methodist Society.

   By 1915 the chapel was dilapidated so the Methodist Ladies Aid Society undertook the mission to construct a new building.  Under the leadership of Mrs. J. A. Knowles, a one-story, white, square, frame building was erected that year.  


This served the needs of the congregation until 1931.  That year was the big oil boom and three of the churches, Presbyterian, Baptist, and Methodist, burned to the ground.  Services were then held in a tent until the current stone structure was completed in 1932.



   By this time the congregation was large enough to be separated from the circuit consisting of five congregations.  It was then the name "St. Luke’s" was chosen for the Kilgore Methodist Church.  


St. Luke’s has continued to meet the needs of a growing and changing community ever since that time.

The children's educational building, Knowles Chapel, and the current offices were added in 1956.  The
Family Center housing classroom, activity center, and a modern kitchen, was completed in 1980.  Playgrounds and much of the campus facility was renovated in 2002.

   St. Luke’s is always positioned for growth in ministry outreach.  In 2004 an
Activity Center was completed with a gymnasium (complete with lockers and showers), additional space for meetings, youth and children ministries, and for multiple other uses.  This new facility continues our commitment for strong ministries to our own congregation and to the Kilgore community as we reach out in the name of Christ.

   We are well aware that buildings do not make churches - PEOPLE DO!  



The many leaders, volunteers, the church family, and pastors that have served St. Luke’s are credited for continually building and changing to better serve the community and families of Kilgore.