SUNNYSIDE CHURCH OF THE BRETHREN
Sunnyside Church of the Brethren near New Creek along US Rt. 50 traces its roots to a small Dunkard congregation first known as the Leatherman Church located on the Cut Off Road(along Rt. 220 today) about one quarter mile from the Duling United Methodist church.
August 25,1890 a deed from Sanford M. and Mary Staggs to Frank Roberts, John Parrish and Warner Leatherman trustees for the Leatherman Church on the road across the iron bridge at Knavenshue Ford...adjoining land of Joseph Workman heirs...(Cut Off Rd.)shows this was the early location.
The New Creek congregation of the German Baptist Church held its first meeting in the Paris School (home located across from Sampsons and at corner of Pine Swamp Road at traffic light). Need for a church building was paramount and plans were made for the Leatherman Church which was dedicated December 26,1891.
Church records indicate action was taken September 1916 to convert the Sunnyside School house into a church and call it Sunnyside Chapel. The old Leatherman church needed repair work and the majority of members resided in the Sunnyside area therefore the location was changed. Lumber from the Leatherman Church on Cut Off was sold to the Markwood Methodists.
After classes at the school had been discontinued at Sunnyside, Mr. Jake McDonald of New Creek purchased the building and grounds which he donated to the Brethren. In 1902 the Board of Education had bought one acre of land from J. Frank Roberts for this Sunnyside school.
Worship services were held in the school building until 1938 when the original brick structure was constructed. Approximately 20 years later this house of worship was remodeled with an extension on the sanctuary, Sunday school classrooms, kitchen and fellowship hall added and dedicated in 1958.
Another 20 year cycle later in 1978 the sanctuary was modernized and various improvements and additions were undertaken.
The Brethren at Sunnyside doing much of the work voluntarily built the adjacent parsonage in the early 1950's.
Pioneer pastors were George Leatherman, J.A. Parrish, Frank Roberts, Joseph Arnold, Johnny Baker, Benny Smith, W.W. Bane Sr., Burzy Ludwick, Lorenza Fike, Raphael Leatherman, Ollie Green and Emra Fike.
It was not until 1951 a full time, paid minister was secured. Rev. Norman Harsh was hired full time followed by Owen Stultz, Gene Bucher, Max Fisher and Herman Baliles.
submitted by: Betty Bane Dzubba
Betty Bane Dzubba