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Circular Letter, 1845
Elkhorn Baptist Association (KY)
A Summary of Church Letters
By W. F. Broaddus
      We conclude that we shall be more likely to accomplish our object in addressing you on the present occasion, if instead of discussing some particular doctrine or precept of the Gospel, we present you with a brief statement of the condition of the churches composing our body, with extracts from the communications they have respectively sent up to this session. We proceed as follows:

Clear Creek, Woodford county

      This is one of the oldest churches in the State. She has passed through several extensive revivals, under the labors of our fathers, long since gone to their reward. In the afflictions growing out of the attempts to "reform" the Baptist denomination, she was considerably involved, and through all the struggle, maintains her original standing. Deaths and removals have greatly reduced the number of members, while the increase of other denominations in the vicinity, has greatly diminished the congregation attending the regular preaching. Recently, however, the congregation has considerably increased, and some few are apparently interested about the salvation of their souls. The brethren are in favor of the benevolent enterprises of the present age. The church expresses, in her letter, a determination to renew and increase their prayers that God would pour out his spirit among them, and revive his work. Days of preaching, 3d Saturday and Sabbath - W. F. Broaddus, Pastor.

Great Crossing, Scott county

      This is also a church of long and efficient standing. She expresses great in the spread of the Gospel, and gives substantial proof of her attachment to the cause of Domestic Missions, by sending up $10 to aid the General Association. Although not many have recently joined the church, some drops of mercy have fallen upon them, by which they are encouraged to pray tha the Lord would bless the means his people are using, "until the kingdom and the dominion, and the greatness of the kingdom under the whole heaven, shall be given to the people of the saints of the Most High, whose kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and all dominions shall serve and obey him." Preaching twice a month - Y. R. Pitts, Pastor.

Bryant's Station, Fayette county

      The word of God was preached here long ago, with power, and many were added to the Lord. The spirit of division finally separated them into two parties, worshipping in the same house, one party fraternizing with the anti-missionary Baptists. Since the separation, the church connected with our body has enjoyed much peace. They expressed gratitude to God for his long continued favors to them as a church, and earnest prayers for the spread of the gospel: while they invite the ministering brethren generally to visit them, and preach for them. Days of preaching, 4th Saturday and Lord's day - Edward Darneby, Pastor.

Stamping Ground, Scott county

      So frequent and extensive revivals had this church enjoyed a few years ago, that the whole neighborhood was crowded with Baptists, and some had even suggested that but little remained to be done within her borders. Our hearts have been made to rejoice, however, by the intelligence that during the summer many have been brought into fellowship with Christ. The church writes: "Fathers and mothers have been made to rejoice at the actions of their prodigal sons and daughters." We comtemplate with peculiar pleasure this season of refreshing as indicating that the favor of the Lord is not utterly withdrawn from the churches of our union. God grant that all our churches may soon enjoy a like gracious visitation! The colored members have a separate meeting for business with their own Moderator, attended by the regular clerk and deacons of the church; great good has resulted from this arrangement. Preaching twice a month - J. D. Black, Pastor.

David's Fork, Fayette county

      This largest of our churches (except for the Lexington, African) enjoys uniterrupted peace; but complains of great sorrow in view of the languid state of Zion generally. The brethren express a hope tha the "exhortation of the Pastor to persevere in the work of the Lord, will soon be followed by a rich blessing. Preaching twice a month, and prayer meeting every Wednesday evening - R. T. Dillard, Pastor.

Big Spring, Woodford county

     Peace reigns among these brethren, though no season of revival has recently been enjoyed;
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the brethren pray for an out pouring of God's spirit. Preaching 4th Saturday and Lord's day; no regular Pastor.

North Fork, Franklin county

      No revival in this church. The letter complains of great coldness, but breates a spirit of prayer for an out pouring of God's spirit. Preaching 2d Saturday and Lord's day - B. F. Kenney, Pastor.

Mount Pleasant, Jessamine county

      Under the labors of the Pastor, this Church enjoys peace. They invite, however, other MInistering brethren to visit them, that the Pastor may be aided in his efforts to win souls to Christ. Preaching 3d Saturday and Lord's day - Y. R. Pitts, Pastor.

Silas, Bourbon county

      The brethren of this Church express regret that they have not been engaged as they should have been in endeavoring to promote the cause of Christ. They, however, enjoy peace, and some degree of prosperity, with a prospect of still greater. Preaching 1st Saturday and Lord's day - J. D. Black, Pastor.

Georgetown, Scott county

      This Church holds an attitude of special importance to the denomination, being located at the seat of our College; where so large a number of young men licensed for the ministry, are receiving education. The brethren here have acquitted themselves well. Though comparatively few in number, and not wealthy, they have lately erected one of the best meeting houses in the State, in which they have preaching every Lord's Day, with weekly prayer meetings. The congregaiton averages about 400. The Sabbath school numbers 230. The Library contains about 800 vol., 100 copies of the youth's Penny Gazette, and 20 of the Sunday school Journal are circulated. The monthly concert is regularly observed; and the great cause of benevolence vigorously supported. The increase of numbers has recently been small, but constant. Preaching every Lord's Day - H. Malcom, Pastor.

Hartwood, Scott county

      This is a small Church. We extract from their letter a prayer, which if sincerley presevered in, must enable this little one to chase a thousand. "We pray God that all the human family may be converted and brought to a knowledge of themselves, and of the plan of salvation by Jesus Christ." Preaching 1st Saturday and Lord's day - J. Lucas, Pastor.

First Baptist Church, Lexington

      This Church informs us that her Pastor, W. F. Broaddus, has resigned, having removed from the city, and that brother W. M. Pratt has accepted the pastoral charge. Embarrassing questions have arisen among them, but they have been disposed of, and passed away, and the Church now enjoys comparative peace. We have aided (say they) with our substance, in carrying forward the missions to foreign lands, to the Western Indians, and amongst ourselves. This Church is actively engaged in works of benevolence. They have preaching every Lord's day - two weekly prayer meetings. The monthly concert is regularly observed, and contributions constantly made for the spread of the Gospel. The SAbbath school numbres 130, and is regularly increasing. The Library contains 700 volumes. Fifty copies of the "Youth's Penny Gazette" are gratuitously circulated in the Sabbath school every two weeks. On the whole, this Church appears to be actively engaged in Gospel labors. Preaching every Lord's day - William M. Pratt, Pastor.

First African Church, Lexington

      This is the largest Baptist Church in Kentucky. The Pastor, Elder London Ferrell, a colord man, is highly esteemed, and labors with great success. The Church enjoys peace and prosperity. Preaching every Lord's day, with weekly prayer meetings - London Ferrell, Pastor. The Church is auxiliary to the 1st Baptist Church.

Pleasant Green African Church, Lexington

      This is a small body of colored brthren, also auxiliary to the 1st Baptist Church. They are without a Pastor; their former preacher, brother January, having died. They are likely to do well.

Paris, Bourbon county

      This church informs us that though nothing has recently transpired to gladden the hearts of God's people, yet they have been steadfast in the faith, and form of doctrine once delivered to the
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saints. They have the occasional pulpit labors of brothern G. G. Goss, in aid of the Pastor. But little addition has recently been made to their number. Preaching, 1st Saturday and Sunday - Edward Darneby, Pastor.

Dry Run, Scott county

      While peace is enjoyed in this church, but few have been added. The brethren pray for a revival of religion. Preaching 3d Saturday and Lord's day - J. D. Black, Pastor.

Cane Run, Fayette county

      This is a small church; no additions lately to her number. The brethren express in the church letter, deep regret that the cause of religion is not in a more flourishing condition; they favor our benevolent institutions generally. Preaching 4th Saturday and Lord's day - B. P. Drake, Pastor.

Long Lick, Scott county

      The brethren of this Church complain of coldness and barrenness. They are supplied with preaching by brother W. R. Combs, as Missionary of the General Association. Preaching 1st Saturday and Lord's day.

East Hickman, Jessamine county

      The Church enjoys peace and prosperity. A goodly number has been added lately to the Church. They warmly support the Mission cause. They say, "let us with more ardour support the general Association; and let us not stop here, but let us find faithful men, who are willing to go to the poor heathen, and tell them of the dying love of Christ." This church has a prayer meeting on Wednesday afternoon of each week. On the whole, the are exerting a good influence for the cause of Christ. Preaching twice a month - R. T. Dillard, Pastor.

Glen's Creek, Woodford county

      These brethren express great joy in the "harmonious action which happily characterize all their proceedings." A few have been added to the Church recently. Besides the regular preaching, the Pastor gives occasional lectures, on Sabbath afternoons. Preaching twice a month - J. L. Waller, Pastor.

Hillsborough, Woodford county

      Large additions were made to this Church several years ago; since when, they have enjoyed peace: but in their letter they complain of coldness and barrenness at present. They favor our benevolent institutions. Preaching 4th Saturday and Lord's day - Josiah Leake, Pastor.

Mount Vernon, Woodford county

      A pleasant revival of religion last summer, added considerably to the strength of this Church. She welcomes the meeting of the Association in her house of worship, it being the first such meeting since her Constitution. This Church formerly suffered much from divisions. But at present enjoys entire peace, and seems to be growing in the Lord. The members meet every Lord's day in a Bible class and social meeting. They are friendly to the cause of Missions. Preaching twice a month - L. W. Seeley, Pastor.

Versailles, Woodford county

      This is the smallest church of our body, lately constituted. They have no house of worship, and are not able to build. They worship in the Court House. Their letter breathes a good spirit. Could no the brethren in the country adjacent aid this little band? Our villages generally deserve more attention than they receive. Preaching twice a month by brethen J. L. Waller and W. F. Broaddus.

General Remarks

      It is a fact which calls for heart-felt humiliaiton, that while two or three of the churches have gained somewhat in numbers, during the past year, the Association as a whole, has diminished in numbers, since our last session

      Brethren, why is this so? We venture to make the inquiry whether our churches have been striving by all proper means, to advance the Redeemer's Kingdom. Alas! brethren, what do we see from your letters? More than half our church, are content in themselves with preaching once a month. Very few are in the habit of coming together in prayer meetings. Sabbath

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[From Elkhorn Baptist Association Minutes (KY), 1845, pp. 5-7. This document is copied from the original from the association office in Lexington KY. Transcribed and formatted by Jim Duvall.]

Elkhorn (KY) Circular Letters
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