Norman Seventh-day Adventist Church

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Adventists believe a Trinity of three --the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit--make up one God. Salvation was made possible when Jesus, the Son, came to earth as a baby in Bethlehem and lived a sinless life in accordance with the Father's will. When Jesus was crucified for the sins of the people of the world and arose from the dead on the third day, victory was won for everyone. More >>

What Seventh-day Adventists Believe
As a Protestant Christian church, Seventh-day Adventists are a faith community rooted in the beliefs described by the Holy Scriptures. Adventists describe these beliefs in the following ways: More >>

Fundamental Beliefs of the Seventh-day Adventist Church
Seventh-day Adventists accept the Bible as their only creed and hold certain fundamental beliefs to be the teaching of the Holy Scriptures. These beliefs, as set forth here, constitute the church's understanding and expression of the teaching of Scripture. More >> 

Local Church History

As written by Carol Ann (Winkler Pelfrey) Buckmaster
and Glen Farnsworth in 2007

In 1910, my Granddad, David Orlando Winkler moved to some property near Meeker, Oklahoma.  On the property was a trash heap.  He noticed a bright colored Bible study tract in the pile and picked it up to read.  It was something published from the Seventh-day Adventist Church.  It interested him so he searched the Bible for some passages it mentioned.  After studying on it, he told his wife, “We have been keeping the wrong day Holy. God told us to remember the Sabbath day and that's Saturday, not Sunday."  printable Sabbath Study online

After moving to rural Noble Oklahoma, he asked around and found a family by the name of Farnsworth living in the NW part of Cleveland County who kept the true original Sabbath.  He contacted them and they started worshiping together.  One of the books the Farnsworths shared with him was “Bible Readings for the Home.”  Granddad began giving Bible studies to his neighbors.  Those attending Bible studies were Nancy Logan, the Woodrows, the Farnsworths, and Bonnie Wallace Craig.  This little group often met in homes and sometimes in the Twelve Corner School.  

In 1935, my Grandfather built a one room church school about a half-mile from his home on Winkler family land he donated to the church. There were two teachers.  One was Vera Baker and the other Agnes Barnes.   These ladies sometimes boarded at my Grandparents home.  Some of the children attending this school were Margie Woodrow, Gene Woodrow, Glen Farnsworth, Judge Logan, Amos Logan & Clifford Logan.  This school was open until about 1941.  Several years later the little school was moved by the conference to Davis, Oklahoma, and the last time I was there, it was serving as their fellowship room.  Bonnie Wallace Craig moved to Norman to seek employment and so began the history of the Norman SDA Church.

As written ten years after the Norman SDA Church 
began in the 1940's.

The history of the Norman Seventh-day Adventist Church started one Sunday afternoon in March 1943, over ten years ago. On that day Gertrude Martin came to the home of Bonnie Craig and discussed that they were the only known Seventh-day Adventists in Norman, Oklahoma. Martin had been attending church in Oklahoma City, but suggested that they start their own Sabbath School here in Norman. The next Sabbath Gertrude Martin met with Bonnie Craig in the Craig home for their first Sabbath School. Those present were Martin and her daughter, Bonnie Craig and her two grandsons, Roy and George Bell.
It was not long until the Home Missionary Secretary of the Oklahoma Conference came and organized them into an official Sabbath School. Bonnie Craig was the Sabbath School Superintendent and Treasurer and George Bell was the Secretary. Martin was the Young People’s Leader. These faithful ones never missed a Sabbath School together.
As the navy base began to grow, several navy men whose families were Seventh-day Adventist moved to Norman. These families began meeting with our faithful little group and it began to grow. Thus, early in 1945 there were many more attending services than could possibly meet in the Craig home. So the American Legion Hut was rented for services.
Roger Brewer from Oklahoma City worked tirelessly to see the Norman group grow. It was on Sept.22, 1945 that Brewer and Elder Kenny organized the Norman Sabbath School into the Norman Seventh-day Adventist Church. 

The charter members of the Norman church –
1. Mr. Velmer Dennis Farnsworth   9. Mr. J.A. Horton
2. Mrs. Dessie (Winkler) Farnsworth 10. Mrs. J.A. Horton
3. Mr. Glen Farnsworth 11. Mrs. Truly B. Marriot
4. Mr. David Orlando Winkler 12. Mr. George Bell
5. Mrs. Mamie (Franklin) Woodrow 13. Mrs. Bonnie Craig
6. Mr. C.W. Inglis 14. Mrs. Warren Bishop
7. Mrs. C.W. Inglis 15. Miss Virginia Bishop
8. Mrs. Nancy Logan  
It was at the annual camp meeting in 1946 that the Norman church organization was voted into the sisterhood of churches. 
The Norman church members have met in many and varied places through the years. Services have been held in the homes of Bonnie Craig, Sarah Nash, and the Inglis’ home, also in the American Legion Hut, the Lutheran church, and the Goodrich Memorial Church, the old Presbyterian Church, the New Presbyterian Church and on Feb.1, 1954 the members moved into the side room of this new Seventh-day Adventist Church.
It was in 1947 that Faye Porter, now of Oklahoma City was living in Norman. She was interested in the youth and started a very active Youth Program which grew to nearly 40 members. However after some time the use of the Legion Hut was denied them and with broken hearts the meetings ended. Soon after this disappointment, the members decided the only thing to do was to build a church of their own. Of course, there were problems as to how they could raise the money to build a church. But this courageous little group decided there had to be a start and the project began. Collections were taken every Sabbath for the church building fund. The ladies began their famous food, rummage and bazaar sales. They have been able to raise more than $100 at many of these sales, and at one the total was well over $200.
In Feb. of 1951 the church plans were laid. Many lots were considered but every one prayed that the Lord would lead and direct in making the right decision as to the place to build.
On Oct.21, 1951 we were able to purchase the present property. These lots were obtained for $2375. Later the east lot was sold for $1000. Thus the cost of the present land was $1375.
On April 23, 1953 the members of the Norman Church met with Elder H.C. Klement, President of the Oklahoma Conference of Seventh day Adventists, Elder Perry the district pastor, and Mr. Ray East the builder. They decided upon and chose the plans for the construction of the building as it now stands. Mr. Ray East supervised and built the church with donated labor in less than one year. 
As the church was being completed in February of 1954, Mr. Don Aalborg moved to Norman to pastor this church. Since that time the church furniture has been purchased and the interior decorating has been completed. This present building which we are dedicating today is the answer to untold hours of work and prayers.
As of one week ago today, our church stands completed and ready to be dedicated free of debt, the estimated value of the church being $15,000. The Lord has richly blessed the Seventh-day Adventist members in Norman and today our hearts are turned to Him in thanksgiving.

From the 1990's to the present

Our church on Peters Street was sold in 1990 and we rented until Harold Haley located our present property. It was purchased from Wells Fargo Bank in the summer of 1993 for a total of $37,934.78. 
Under the leadership of Pastor Clarence Southard and Pastor Bill Norman, the first phase of the church, which included a fellowship hall, bathrooms and classrooms, was completed in the summer of 1994. Open house and consecration was held on November 5, 1994.
The second phase, our sanctuary, was completed in the spring of 1998. It has been a long time since 1943, when two women had a dream that Norman needed a Sabbath School.       

The Norman SDA Church paid off the main building in 2006.
Pastors Southard and Norman returned to burn the mortgage.
(left to right) Pastor Clarence Southard, Pastor Harvey Gil, Pastor Bill Norman
video clip

Updated: Jan 13, 2012