UPDATE: Outdoor worship will be held at our new location starting June 7. LEARN MORE

Close Menu X

Our Heritage

Our Heritage



First Christian Church enjoys a long and illustrious history. Beginning with twelve faithful worshippers in 1840, Samuel S. Pepper and Thomas Goodman organized what came to be known as the Church of Christ and began meeting in the Coles County Courthouse. Records show that in 1856 Alexander Campbell, an early leader in the Disciples of Christ preached at First Christian. But perhaps the most influential revivalist to impact the church was Billy Sunday in 1905. Records indicate massive numbers of people coming into the church in the early part of the twentieth century. It was during this era that the congregation grew to about 1,000. Of special note was the Men’s Bible Class, regularly attended by some 300 men.

Throughout its history, First Christian has been affiliated with the Disciples of Christ. That relationship changed in the early 1990’s when First Christian withdrew from the Disciples due to encroaching theological liberalism. Today First Christian is an unaffiliated non-denominational church.