A Snapshot View of our Congregation
The Plattsmouth Church of Christ has been in existence for 40 years. As we understand it, some brethren from the Bellevue congregation felt the need to plant a church in Plattsmouth as there were several members of the church in Bellevue that lived in Plattsmouth. The building was completed in the 1960's. The church grew to nearly 200 people as the result of evangelistic efforts and a vibrant Joy Bus program. The church became known around town as "The Church with the Purple Buses." At one time, the church was running four buses for Sunday school. In the 1970's, the church had three elders and a number of deacons. The elders included Dale Headley, Jack Esslinger, and Don Bahr. Many of the elders and deacons eventually moved away, which essentially dissolved the eldership. Even after the eldership dissolved, Dale Headley continued to provide wise leadership to the congregation until he eventually moved away as well. One notable deacon who never moved away was Jarold "Lee" Smith, who was active in the congregation until his health began to fail and he passed away. A lot of folks around town knew him as "Smittie."
Through the years, the church has seen many changes. The current property originally had a house on it in which the members originally met, until they tore it down and built the current building. At one time, there was a double wide trailer behind the church building which first served as the parsonage, until the church grew to the point that they began to use it for class rooms and bought a house on the south side of town that served as the parsonage.
Due to continued growth, an addition was added to the front of the building in the early 1980's. In order for this to happen, the huge tree in front of the church building had to be cut down. Members in the congregation knew they were going to miss the tree, so someone made a clock out of a slice of the trunk of the tree. The clock still hangs in the back of the auditorium to this day.
In the 1980's, the Youth Group had 21 members and was active in service projects, Bible Camp, and hosting Youth Rallies. There was also a traveling skit group known as "Eye Openers," which performed for special events and for area Youth Rallies. Vacation Bible School, Gospel Meetings, Youth Rallies, Fellowships, Visitation, Camping Trips to Louisville, and circut preaching at area smaller churches were among some of the regular activities the church was involved in.
Some of the preachers who preached full time in Plattsmouth included Mike Hogan, Bob Williams, Clay Ross, Chris Thurber, and Paul Stidham. There are at least five full-time ministers that we know of that cut their ministry teeth in Plattsmouth before going into full-time ministry. The congregation has contributed to the spiritual growth of many people through the years.
The last full time preacher moved away in 1989. The men of the congregation shared in the preaching and teaching responsibilities until Charles Arnold came out of retirement to minister at the congregation on a part-time bases, driving down from Blair weekly to preach and teach. Through the 90's, Charles Arnold was the minister until he went into full retirement. After this, the men of the congregation once again shared in the preaching and teaching duties of the congregation. In the first decade of the new millenium, there was an effort to try and evangelize which resulted in some conversions. However, those converted did not stay. There was also a short period of time when professors from Nebraska Christian College came out on weekend to help with the congregation. They didn't stay either. In addition to this, there were additional members that moved away. It had been difficult for a number of reasons for people to stay. Many newcomers go to congregations in Omaha or Bellevue, where there are children and teen programs.
Recently, a new baptistry was was installed in anticipation of possible conversions to take place. The congregation is now a congregation of about ten. The congregation needs all the help it can get. If you are moving to Plattsmouth, please consider becoming a part of this congregation to help it grow once again.