First Christian Church began in 1816 as a small monthly Bible Study in the Brushton and Moira area. By 1827, it had grown to an official church with 17 members. They determined that the Bible would be their only rule of faith and discipline. During the early years, they met in schoolhouses and homes. Baptisms were held in local rivers during summer and winter. In 1873, the church was legally organized and the name First Christian Church was decided upon.
For many years prior to 1965, Brushton and Dickinson Center shared pastors. Since 1965, several churches have been started by FCC. The first ones were Saranac Lake, Brasher Falls, Lawrenceville and Malone.
In the 1970's several of our members left to become pastors and missionaries. We also began having summer missionaries and 2 year missionaries. Many have gone on to continue a life of evangelism. They/we have reached into China, Taiwan, Japan, India, Haiti, Bulgaria, Egypt, Africa and many areas that we will never know.
In 1972, we began the exciting yearly summer camps for kids and teens. Each year, kids and adults have the opportunity to spend a week in the Adirondacks with other Christians. The days are packed with crafts, Bible studies, games and nightly church services. Over the years we have had weeks that were perfect for swimming in the cold lake, while other years required us to wear winter coats and wrap blankets around us as we trekked down to the lake to swim. No matter what the weather was, we always loved it.
In the early 1970’s a young man came to spend the summer helping out at church. He was excited about the Lord and was willing to do whatever was needed to teach someone about Christ. Mark stayed the summer and ended up staying much longer. He became the youth leader under the direction of the pastor. First Christian Church became the place for teens to have fun while learning about God. Bible Studies became the normal evening activity for kids in the area.
You never knew what would happen at any event. You may find yourself flying a homemade kite, sliding down a hill on a toboggan or participating in a hot pepper eating contest. Parents did not always know what their kids were doing but they knew it was good clean fun.
Mark was patient. He accepted us all. He showed us the unconditional love of God. He also helped us build a firm foundation on which to build our lives.
That was the first time the teenagers found a place in the church. They began working in Vacation Bible School, going to other towns to teach Bible Clubs, going on choir trips. Pizza became a popular food for teens and a trip to the brand new McDonald's was always fun. You could buy a hamburger, french fries and a coke for less than a dollar. Now days you may find the teens at the community center doing many of the same type of things. Or you may find them in the middle of a corn maze or at Lake Placid handing out bottles of water to athletes.
For several years, big blue buses could be seen traveling to and from Malone on Sunday mornings. Kids, teens and adults could ride the bus to church and participate in Bible Study and worship. This was a joint endeavor by teens and the men of the church. Many of the children came without parents and were assisted by the teens. The men had the pleasure of driving and making the many frequent repairs on the buses. Some of the bus drivers were Harold Clark, Dick Manchester, Loren Eggleston and Sterling Gale.
There have always been many family and age appropriate activities and studies going on in the church. It was and still is normal to see young and old working/playing/studying together.