Grand Ave Christian Church
Before Montana became a state on November 8, 1889, Grand Avenue Christian Church was an active congregation. It began with a meeting held by M.L. Streator on Sunday, June 26, 1887. Thirty-four persons signed a covenant of support. As the organizing pastor sent by the Christian Women’s Board of Missions, Brother Streator devoted a year to the establishment of the church.
Formal organization took place February 5, 1889. By February 23, three lots had been purchased on the corner of Grand and Babcock. The initial brick building became possible from a gift from the Missouri Christian Missionary Society, initiated by Miss Lou Payne, a society member, to honor her father. This building was named the Payne Memorial Church, which served the congregation as meeting, education and worship space until 1928. The first service of worship in this building was held on March 17, 1889.
As the congregation grew, so did their building needs. Remodeling of the building to it’s present status began with a building fund started in August, 1920. The extensive remodeling effort, including a new education wing, neared its present form and was dedicated February 22, 1942. Further renovations were made in 1980 – 81. The parking lot was developed on the site of the former parsonage in 1991.
On March 12, 2000 a new baptistry was dedicated in a special service of worship. This project came about through the generous commitment, support and talented labor of many in the congregation. This is the third baptistry in the life of Grand Avenue Christian Church. In order to seamlessly incorporate this new resource into the chancel area at the front of the sanctuary, a significant remodeling effort was performed. With the baptistry came a new shower and changing room facility, and a brand new, backlighted, wooden cross. When all the bills were paid, it was noted that the baptistry project cost more than the orginal church building in straight dollar amounts.
Our building is the principle place for worship, education, baptism and fellowship. We offer everyone the opportunity to grow in Christian faith and understanding through worship services, a variety of adult and youth Faith Exploration classes, Christian Women’s groups, Disciple Men’s group, Men’s Tuesday Breakfast Bible Study at J.B.s Restaurant, Youth Fellowship Group and various all-church fellowship functions and activities.
As a congregation, we strive to be open, friendly to all, providing comfort, renewal and love to fulfill our call to minister to the world with a trained laity and a dedicated clergy.