LAKE PLACID, NEW YORK
God always has a remnant. “For the upright shall dwell in the land, and the perfect shall remain in it,” Proverbs 2:21. In the year of 1849, a Wesleyan Methodist Clergyman by the name of Wardener came to Lake Placid and gave lectures on slavery. Finally a church was organized and from that time on religious services were held in the village.
Around the year of 1908 God spoke to Cassius Shumway and Dan Hazelton and told them to spread the Gospel to their surrounding communities. They immediately started in Childwold, NY. God marvelously converted Charles Shumway and James Bickford, Sr. Charles Shumway went back to Lake Placid and was a blessing to the lost and dying community. This made an opening for Mr. Hazelton and Mr. Shumway, so they came and held services in Charles Shumway’s home. Many were converted and homes were affected by the efforts of these men.
A house was rented of Will Tabor for about a year. It was there that some of our present Christians were converted, among them, Mr. Charles Marshall, Mr. and Mrs. Melvin Preston, Sr.
From the Tabor home they moved to Merit Williams’ home, the present sight of the Wilkin’s store. A Sunday School was organized, and has been continued to this present time.
Later, a revival was held by Wallace Sweeney, and many souls were converted. As the crowds grew, space became crowded and new places to hold services were needed. A Mr. Marsh followed Mr. Sweeney holding meetings in which more souls were saved. The continued services resulted in effectiveness of the Gospel so that the influence spread to many homes.
As the work grew it was decided that a church should be built so that they could worship together. A building lot joining Ernest Hough’s property was purchased for a church. With money borrowed from Laura Whitman and Mrs. C. W. McCutcheon, and pledges received, a church was started. Mr. Beaney contracted to build a church for $1,100. People passing by seeing the earnestness of this group gave small amounts until it was finished. It was completed in 1916 and in 1918 Rev. Fred Suffield came for revival and dedicated the church. Soon after the church was built a bell was donated by Robert Lapan. Rev. David Wilson came for revival, many souls were saved and young people were coming. A pastor was needed so District Superintendent Albert Wilson sent Rev. Elis T. Boswell to Lake Placid in 1920. Shortly after Rev. Boswell came the name of the church was changed from Pentecostal Rescue Mission to the Pilgrim Holiness Church. Rev. Boswell was a great Bible student and when he left in 1924, he left a band of young people. Rev. Leonard Richmond came in April 1924, and worked faithfully. Through his efforts the present church building was purchased from the Episcopalians at a cost of $5,000.
The annual Conference of the Pilgrim Holiness Church was held in Lake Placid in the spring of 1925. Many meetings were held in which the church body grew and revivals were held with souls being saved. Under the anointed preaching of Rev. Earl Dulaney, Donald Hardy, Mr. and Mrs. Kenneth Peck, Mr. and Mrs. John Peck were saved.
On the last Sunday of this revival a Baptismal service was held on the banks of the West Branch of the Ausable River, with 27 converts baptized. This effective work was under the leadership of Lorrin Wilson who followed Rev. Leonard Richmond as pastor. Rev. Wilson and his good wife were a blessing to the church and the community, her smile and his kind words were a help in the discouraging times. The church grew and souls were marvelously converted during his six year tenure as pastor.
The church continued to prosper and grow under the leadership of faithful men who stood tall to proclaim that Jesus will save whosoever will come. Great men have graced the pulpit and only eternity will tell of the work done in the community.
On February 10, 1954, a tragic fire gutted the entire interior of the church. Plans were made immediately to rebuild the structure, and by the help of our own group and many volunteers, dismantling of the building was done regardless of the winter weather. Bro. and Sr. Hardy sacrificed and labored faithfully for the work. On November 28, 1954, we held our dedication service in the new church. It stands today as a Lighthouse in the community for those who need a place to worship and those who need to be saved.
Efforts have been advanced to promote our growth, keeping the church alive for the cause of holiness. To broaden our usefulness an outreach was commenced and is currently maintained through the weekly Good News Club, sowing the seed to children of all faiths. Services have been provided on Sunday afternoon at a Senior Citizen housing complex. A hymn sing is established at the Uehlein Mercy Center ministering to patients, their visitors, and staff. Cottage prayer services also are held in addition to the schedule of regular church services.
After years of effort to purchase property adjacent to the church, the lot was finally obtained, filled in and parking area was provided. This area has been enhanced by a hedge of trees and fencing. Presently, a new parsonage is being purchased next door to the church, to replace the former parsonage a mile away.
It is significant that the founders of the church blazed a trail of holiness, passing the torch from generation to generation. From the church the youngest has obtained a Christian Heritage and may it continue until Jesus comes.
Pastors of the Lake Placid church are as follows: Rev. Lorren Wilson — December 6,1925 to 1934; Irving Phillips — 1934 to 1936; Rev. Benjamin Rickenback, Sr. - 1936 to 1941; Rev. Floyd Baker - 1941 to 1942; Rev. Harry Twining - April 1943 to June 1946; Rev. George E. Culver - June 1946 to June 1949; Rev. Donald Hardy - 1949 to June 1962; Rev. Dennis Guile -June 1962 to July 1965; Rev. Roger Ellers - 1965 to 1971; Rev. William Saxton - 1971 to 1981; Rev. Francis Richmond -1981 to 1984; Rev. Dale Hallaway - 1984 to 1986; Rev. B. J. Ward - 1986 to 1992; Rev. Steven Mills - 1992 to present .
Last modified 12/9/00