SHELBYVILLE, Ill.—A day of fellowship marked the 150th anniversary of First Baptist Church.

Preparations for this special day of celebration began over a year ago as the ladies began putting together a commemorative cookbook. Then on the morning of Sept. 2, the congregation viewed a slideshow of pictures capturing the history of the church, browsed a display of photos and memorabilia, and heard messages from two the church’s former pastors, Dan Johnson (pastor from 1985 to 1991) and Dan Eloe (pastor from 1991 to 2014).

That afternoon everyone gathered for a group picture, enjoyed a gospel bluegrass concert by the group High Cotton, and ate a barbecue luncheon on the church lawn, catered by church members Ben and Amber Snow of Holy Smokes. The day concluded with a sweet time of praises and testimonies recalling God’s faithfulness.

The anniversary event was “not just about celebrating the past; it’s about anticipating what He’s going to do in the future,” says Tim Yankee, pastor of the church since 2015.