St. James Brethren Church began in 1885, just outside of St. James, Maryland, after a revival meeting that was conducted by our first pastor, Rev. J.D. McFaden, in the local fire hall. Church members met in Fountain Rock School for worship until our first church building was erected. On Christmas Day in 1886, the original Church building, known fondly as the little white church, was dedicated to the Lord.
Over the next several decades, expansion projects were completed to accommodate our church growth at the little white church. Between 1958-1959, church members wrestled with the continued growth of the church and our developing Sunday school programming. In 1961, the 10-acre property adjacent to our little white church was purchased along with the 2-story brick house (the parsonage) positioned on the property.
In June 1966, a two story educational building was constructed beside the parsonage and 5 years later the building was expanded to our first multi-purpose facility. This project included the addition of a sanctuary, baptistery, kitchen facilities and a lower auditorium for church fellowship and programming.
Over the coming years, it became evident that our current building was inadequate to meet the needs of our church growth. Thus, another expansion project was necessary. This expansion aimed to double the size of the lower auditorium and included the addition of transepts on the left and right sides of the sanctuary. A secretary’s office and Pastor’s study were also included in the building plans. This project was completed and dedicated in 1989.
Our previous Pastor, Dr. Brian H. Moore, began his 29-year tenure at St. James in 1983. He oversaw the 1989 church expansion project and dreamed of a large multi-purpose building, which could meet the needs of our surrounding community. From his dream “Project 2000” was born. In 2001, they broke ground for this dream to become a reality. Our ministry center includes a full sized gymnasium with staging at the north end, 4 classrooms, an expansive kitchen, additional restrooms, a garage for storage and an open entryway featuring a drive up canopy. Along with this construction, our parking lot was increased to accommodate twice the original parking spaces.
Our current pastor, Pastor Brad Selan, was called to full-time ministry at St. James Brethren Church in 2013. Under his leadership, current ministry efforts have been renewed in their vision and new ministry opportunities are beginning to emerge. God is continuing to show favor upon His children at St. James Brethren Church and bless us in our mission to draw people to Him.