The Historical Society of the Bible Fellowship Church

November, 2005

Pleasant company and good conversation. They are at the heart of meetings of the Historical Society. If you were at Bethlehem on October 29, you enjoyed them. You enjoyed hearing about the history of Ebenezer Church in Bethlehem and about the group of seven men who banded together in a society that has become the Bible Fellowship Church. Our speakers, LeRoy Wilcox and Harold Shelly, did a wonderful job, both of research and in presentation.

We were saddened by the news that Bryan Bray, husband of Ardella Bray, died the night following our meeting. Bryan had cancer and had begun the treatments that can be so hard on a person. He was spared this struggle and was delivered according to the plan and promise of God. The death of someone we know is always a difficult thing. There is comfort in the assurance that Jesus was his Savior and he now enjoys being the presence of God and seeing the friends of long ago. Our prayers are for Ardella as she moves on and makes adjustments.


Ardella had asked to be relieved of the responsibility of treasurer of our society. We are glad to announce that her big shoes have been somewhat filled by the election of Jack English. Jack and his wife, Carol, attend our Lebanon Church and are long time members of the society. We are glad for Jack’s help and I suspect we have the fringe benefit of Carol’s interest and help as well. At any rate, you will see Jack’s name and address on the renewal form.

Before I go any farther, check out the building in the picture at the right. Do you recognize it? Have you seen it before?


Take a closer look. Are you sure you have not seen it? Look closely.

Before I go on, I want to remind you that if you did not send your membership renewal in, you should do it now. I will also remind you that you may give a gift membership to someone you think might be interested. A number of people were joined to the society in this way and are glad for it. It is a great Christmas gift for that person who has everything. It is sure better than another wall plaque. A form has been included for you. Just mail it in.

Let me tell you what I have not included in this pack of material. I have not included LeRoy Wilcox’s excellent paper on the history of Bethlehem. LeRoy passed out a copy of the paper at the meeting and so many of you have it already. If you did not receive it, I have posted it on our website ( where you will find the latest copy with minor corrections. Go to the website and look under the section entitled, “Church History Library,” where you will see Bethlehem listed. Not only will you find LeRoy’s paper, you will find a transcription of early membership lists and random notes which I compiled in a survey of the Bethlehem Church. If you do not have access to the internet and would like a paper, write or call me and I will see that you receive LeRoy’s paper.

What will you find in this packet? First, you will find a membership renewal form. If you sent yours in before the Bethlehem meeting, don’t send another. If you have not renewed, do it now. Second, you will find a copy of the paper by Harold Shelly. I believe you will enjoy it. Harold’s research and thoughts give us an even greater understanding of the formation of our church.

I want to remind you about our website which now contains over 600 files. This website is intended to be a resource for those who might want to know more about our past. Our website will be invaluable to the college student who has to write a paper on the history of their church. Many high schoolers receive a similar assignment. People who desire to write a history of their church will find a great deal of information. If you hear about anyone seeking information about our church, send them to our website,

As always, I really enjoy hearing from you. Questions and comments are always appreciated.

I will share from a letter sent by Ruth Gehret Seifert, wife of A. L. Seifert to Ardella Bray.


When I saw the picture of my grandparents, Mr. and Mrs. Harvey Hottel, in the latest historical news, I thought I had to write to you.

My dad, Myron Doney Gehret, Timothy Doney Gehret and Ester Doney Gehret Kauffman Wolf were the children of Adam and Ida Doney Gehret. My grandfather pastored many of our churches until the Lord took him home at the age of 31. Upon his death my grandmother could not keep the family together and my dad was adopted by the Hottels. They only changed his middle name from “Doney” to “Harvey.” Many visits and holidays were spent with them in Coopersburg. My uncle was not adopted but raised by a couple in Bethlehem. My grandmother who worked at Moravian College was allowed to take my Aunt Esther with her.

I thank the Lord for the godly heritage I have inherited.


And we thank you, Ruth, for your comments.

I am awaiting your communication.

Oh yes, the pictures. Many of you have seen the building before - at Mizpah Grove. The Mizpah Grove pavilion is alive and well and still serving the Lord. The metal frame may have given it away to you immediately. It is now the auditorium on the grounds of the Jubilee Camp Ground in Wescoesville, just off Brookside Drive. It belongs to the Assembly of God and looks like it is being put to good use.


Dick Taylor

email -

telephone and fax - 610-876-8725

regular old mail - 723 South Providence Road, Wallingford PA 19086

Membership Renewal

Your name and address:

____ I would like to renew my membership in the Historical Society for 2004 - 2005. Membership entitles you to receive our periodic mailings and free admission to next year’s meeting at Terre Hill.

[Your cost is $16.00 per individual or $22.00 per married couple.]

____ I would like to give an introductory gift membership at a cost of $10.00 or $16.00 per married couple. Please send this membership to: (Please list name and address in the space below)

Enclosed is my check for $ .00 made payable to The Historical Society.

Mail this renewal form to Jack English, 19 Arbor Drive, Myerstown PA, 17067-3107.

Book Order Form




Cost per




The Bible Fellowship Church








What Mean These Stones?




In Search of Eusebius Hershey




Diary of Levi Jung




Gospel Workers Manual




Video or DVD (specify)





Cost of books



Shipping and Handling

(See below)




Total Due


Shipping and handling charges

0-$10.00 $2.00

$10.01 - $20.00 $3.00

$10.01 - $30.00 $4.00

$30.01 - $40.00 $5.00

$40.01 - $50.00 $6.00

$50.00 - Free

Make your checks payable to BFC Historical Committee.

Mail your copy of the order form to:

BFC Historical Committee

723 South Providence Road

Wallingford PA 19086