Channing gets a cowboy church
By Judi Wiegman
The dilapidated former Cayce Grocery store on Highway 385 in Channing has received a facelift. In four days, the building was changed from a run-down eyesore to a church.
Dedicated men and women from all walks of life, with a talent for building, came from several towns in Texas to be part of God’s plan; to rebuild the store into a church called Saddle Mountain Cowboy Church. The facility was dedicated on Saturday, August 22, 2009.
The dedication began in the community center with a huge chuck wagon supper featuring hamburgers and hot dogs with all the trimmings, ranch beans, a variety of salads, and topped off with desserts and homemade ice cream.
After feasting ‘til stuffed, the group gathered to dedicate their new home. The clomping of cowboy boots on the wood floor and the jangling of spurs stopped as each cowboy reverently removed his hat for a prayer of dedication offered by a Cowboy Pastor, Kevin Burris.
Burris, thanked many from the community and groups from as far away as Tyler, Texas. Some workers spent the nights sleeping on cots in a huge tent and also on the floor of the sanctuary, as the work progressed. “God wants us to be available,” Burris said, “and people from all walks of life stepped up to make this seemingly impossible task happen.”
He challenged the group to think about II Corinthians 5:17 that states, “The old is gone and everything is new.” “That is how it is with this building,” he continued, “it is a new beginning. In a very short time the workers created a building worthy to be called a house of worship!”
His comments were followed by a moving experience where three children were baptized in a large galvanized water tank.
Adam Smith, a lay minister, will be the pastor for the new church that formed as a result of a two-year Bible Study group that met on the Smith Ranch west of Channing. Soon, the group outgrew the ranch house and moved to the Channing Community Center. By mid-2009, they realized they were a congregation and needed a place to worship. Saddle Mountain Cowboy Church was born! They acquired the old grocery store building and called on members of other cowboy churches to help with the renovation.
The church was humbly and proudly dedicated to the glory of God as a place of meeting for those of the western culture in the western Texas Panhandle.
Ya’ll stop by and visit!