The church continued to grow into the early seventies and much success was realized particularly with inner city youth through the bus ministry, Sunday school, and day camp programs. In 1977, the original church building was completely remodeled into a children’s educational building and the nursery facilities were expanded.
In 1979, the Lord called Pastor Dell Hyssong, Jr. to assume the reigns of leadership. During his tenure, there was a deliberate effort to provide ministries for edification of believers in various stages of life. Nursery programs became learning-centered, the AWANA and youth ministries expanded, an elective Sunday school curriculum for adults was developed, young adult fellowship, men’s fellowship, women’s fellowship, and senior saints ministries began. There was a vision to reach beyond this local community, to the Merrimack Valley and beyond ~ and the Lord blessed.
In 1984, an educational wing with a fellowship hall was added, with immediate impact upon youth and adult ministries. The nursery facilities were improved and enlarged once more as family ministry was emphasized. Staff was increased and a second worship service was added.
In 1990, the Lord called Pastor Steve Jeanes, who had served as an associate to Pastor Hyssong, to lead the church. The 1990’s saw a renewed emphasis of the personal responsibility of every believer to make disciples through a faithful life and loving witness. Once again, the Lord blessed. The church continued to develop ministries that targeted the life-stage needs of people and provide biblical instruction and relational support. We saw the Lord building families and touching the hearts of our youth. We have seen our students reaching students, neighbors reaching neighbors, friends reaching friends, and family members sharing Christ with their loved ones.
In the late 1990’s, the ‘Building on Faith’ campaign was used of the Lord to greatly expand the usefulness of our facilities. The congregation heartily endorsed the plan, recognizing that only through the grace of God and the sacrifices of God’s people would our dreams become reality. The church people sacrificially gave more than $800,000 beyond their regular offerings, which allowed Marsh Corner to complete the next phase of our master plan. The lower level of our educational wing was completed providing modern nursery, pre-school, and youth facilities. A new lobby and entrance area, an elevator, and an enlarged office/administration center were also created. These facilities were dedicated in a service of celebration on June 11, 2000.
We look back with thankfulness to the Lord ~ who has made all this possible ~ and we look to the future with trust in His provision as we keep our eyes on Him, and continue to minister to the needs of people.
Written in 2006
Author: Jeff Barraclough