You can find Blackburn's Chapel United Methodist Church near the South Fork of the New River. The history of Blackburn's chapel can be traced back to early Methodist years and to one of the first methodist bishops, Francis Asbury who was ordained by John Wesley who founded the Methodist denomination. Blackburn's Chapel's strong ties and origins are true to John Wesley's foundational commitments to personal and social holiness, a spirituality that is lived out in community through mercy, compassion and justice. One of the church's early leaders, Levi Blackburn, and other lay Methodist leaders used this church's space to gather for schooling purposes, public or political affairs and not just religious worship.
Backstory and Context
The mission at Blackburn's Chapel is "connecting with Christ, and through Christ connecting with each other and our neighbors. We accomplish this mission through contagious hospitality efforts, radical service and mission, rejuvenating worship, and intentional spiritual growth."
They have a vision which is to be a "growing and dynamic rural church that cultivates restoration, joy and love among our members, in Todd and beyond through the resurrecting grace and power of Jesus Christ."
They have another vision of being "a bridge-building church, between older and younger, the churched and spiritually exploring, tradition and innovation, the church and community, newcomers and long-time locals" and so many more people from so many different walks of life.
At one point in the past, Blackburn's chapel was worried that they would have to close its doors for good due to a decline in members. But in 2006, a few dedicated members of this church prayed and asked for help which in turn gave this church a whole new life. So in 2007, the church agreed to "turn over the legal and administrative authority of its property to Boone UMC," which has provided them with important resources for their members in order to revitalize their church. Since its rejuvenation in 2007, Blackburn's Chapel has grown from a few members with a small impact to now maintaining an average of 35-40 constant members on Sundays.