(The following is from the Wayside Pentecostal Church 75th Annivery Booklet
presented to Brother Jesse Booth at the celebration held December 3, 1995 for the church's 75th year. The book was
presented by Linda G. Day.)
. . and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it." Matthew 16:18
The first services in the Wayside community were held by Brother
W.T. Hemphill in a Free Methodist Church across the road from the present church site. After the church doors were
padlocked, prayer meetings were held in the homes of the saints. Sister Allie Parker received the Holy Ghost in one
of these home prayer meetings.
Soon after, Brother Hemphill began holding services in a tent, in which 1X12 boards across stumps served as pews. It
was said that some folds would come to cut the ropes so that the tent would collapse during services. Saints have testified
that Sister Ella Day was checking the ropes securing the tent one evening before service. She was bitten by a poisonous
snake, but as usual, she was at the evening meeting worshipping! The tent never fell at Wayside!
A brush arbor was erected to the right of the church that now
faces the road. Services were conducted here until 1921, when the first tabernacle was built. The tabernacle had
a sawdust floor, shuttered windows, and a wood heater. There was a platform in the front for the preacher to stand on
when preaching. Later, it was partitioned, and floors added before Brother Hemphill moved into the building.
In February 1922, 33 people were baptized. Of these,
one was an eight (8) year old girl. She received the Holy Ghost in a prayer meeting at Brother Ed Day's home.
This little girl was Sister Mary Wolleson Townsend.
The first building was built about 1928. Wooden shutters were used for windows. Afterward, the ladies sold hens
to buy glass window panes for the church.
Brother Willis Montgomery had a saw mill and donated lumber for the church. Brother Hemphill built the seats.
Later, a parsonage was added to the back of the church.
Times were hard in the Wayside Community during the depression years, just as it was elsewhere. For several years the
congregation declined and only a few faithful members dept the door open.
Sister Ella Day and the others would bring lanterns from home to light the sanctuary.
She would lead the service, the singing, and many times deliver the message.
During the forties, the offering would be only 30 to 40 cents. The parsonage had grown
to three rooms. No cooking was done on the Sabbath so all food was prepared on Friday. Every Saturday evening
there was Sabbath Bible School (Sunday School) to enjoy. Brother Moody began these meetings where he read scripture
to both children and adults. Sister Lois Wollerson, who was about nine (9) year old, attended those bible classes.
Brother Holland Wollerson, also nine (9), was baptized during this time by Brother Barker at Rocky Bottom. Brother Moody
encouraged the classes to go to Baton Rouge and New Orleans on Sunday School trips.
In 1950, Brother Doyle Aaron pastored the Wayside Church. Brother Clarence
Wiley was holding a revival at the church when Brother Aaron decided to leave. Reverend Jesse Boothe, graduate of the
International Bible College of San Antonio, Texas, attended services one night with Brother C. B. Wiley and was asked to stay
on as pastor.
Brother Boothe had pastored
in Tennessee and Arkansas before God led him the the small church at Wayside. During this time, the Sunday School attendance
had fallen to a very few. Brother Boothe put a canvas top on his fishing vehicle and began to transport children from
all over to the church. Out of this came a revival in the church. Brother Boothe paid an evangelist's salary
by commercial fishing using the same truck. The church again began to grow.
During the late 1960's, Brother Clyde Grayson, pastor, was responsible for the addition
of the Sunday School rooms, restrooms in the rear of the church and the kitchen wing. The ladies of the church quilted
and sold donuts and peanut brittle to pay for the additions. Sister Merle Wollerson, Sister Mary Walker, Sister Bertha
Browning, Sister Dean, Sister SarahKemp, Sister Ollie Reeves, Sister Hodge, Sister Katie Parker, Sister Justine Newman, Sister
Ruby Day and many, many other cooked and worked for this addition. In order to separate the rostrum from the pews the
sisters also raised the money for drapes. They not only made the money for the material, they also made the curtains
and hung them.
The 1970's brought
about the return of Brother Jesse Boothe. A four bedroom brick parsonage was built at this time, as well as a new roofline
for the church. A large fellowship hall was built behing the church in 1983. Most of this work was done by the
men of the church who labored many hours every evening after work.
In 1992, the people decided it was time to give a "face lift" to the 40 year old building. A beautiful foyer,
two restrooms, a sound room, and nursery were added to the front of the building. The sanctuary was papered and re-panelled
during this time, and a baptistry added with a mural painted by John Walters.
It is for the dedication of this new addition and the celebration of the 75 continuous year
of praise and worship at the Wayside Pentecostal Church this booklet has been prepared.
In XXXX, under the pastorate
of Brother Pete, the church remodeled the Family Life Center. In 2007, under the pastorate of Brother
Tommy Cotten, the church again remodeled to increase the size of the sanctuary. The current foyer was added at this
God has truly blessed Wayside
in that we had a "note burning" service on November X, 2008. The construction to the church was completely
paid off. At this time, we have begun setting aside and raising funds with future plans toward a brand new, much
larger church. If God tarries, we will one day see a new sanctuary filled with souls!