Shahpur Methodist Church
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Church History

After the morning worship was over at the Raikhad Methodist Church on Sunday. 25th, March, 1973. Rev. C.J.Parmar informed the congregation that a new church was built in Shahpur and those members of the Church who lived north of the Relief Road were to be given farewell. So the pastor invited those members who were to join the Shahpur Methodist Church, near the pulpit, offered bouquets to each one of them, offered the parting prayer and blessing and bid farewell to them.

On Sunday, April, 4th 1973, the members of the Shahpur Methodist Church arrived at the new premises of the church. They had the first worship service in the new church building. Rev. G.T.Johnson preached the first sermon to the congregation and welcomed the members. It was a great occasion and the joy of the church members knew no bounds.

The Shahpur Methodist church , by the grace of God , got a ready-made church building, without having to bear any financial obligation. District Superintendent Rev Ithiel V. Master purchased this land for the church with money provided by Gujarat Annual conference. It was planned that a social center will be organized along with the church. The groundbreaking ceremony for the church was performed by Bishop A.J.Shaw. But before the building constraction can take place some unexpected difficulties cropped up which were removed by District Suprentendent Rev. R.M.Rathod who approach the Municipal Commissioner. And when some financial constraints arose Rev. R. M. Rathod contacted Re.Henry Larsey who was an official in the Methodist Board’s office in New York. Thus he received loan for the project. On the completion of the Church building and Social Center it was dedicated for the Glory of God by Bishop R. D. Joshi on 13 the August,1972.

A meeting of those Methodist members residing on north of Relief Road was called by D.S. Rev. R. M. Rathod on 26-1-1973. He presented a plan to form a seprate Church, Known as a Shahpur Methodist Church from the mother Church, Raikhad Methodist Church. Consequently the Shahpur church came in to existence from 1st April,1973. Connected to the Church was a social center. Hence Rev. Shantilal Gohil was appointed as Ass.Pastor.

Rev. G.T.Johnson was the first Pastor of the Shahpur Methodist Church and took up the responsibility very enthusiastically. From the very beginning Rev. Johnson laid a strong foundation of the church through his spiritual sermons. With the help of his wife Mrs.Johnson, he started a social center having a reading room, a book stall, indoor games and a tailoring class. On account of his efforts the church became very vibrant and through its testimony it spread the good news in the neighborhood. But before he could achieve good result, he was transferred to Kodaicanal in South India. So the Church members bid a sorrowful adieu to Rev. G. T. Johnson and Mrs JinnyBahen on 16-03-1975.

Taking in to consideration the urgent need of a Pastor for the church the D.S. Rev. J.I.Chauhan appointed Rev. R.B.Desai as 2nd Pastor of The Shahpur Methodist Church.Though he was a retired pastor of the Gujarat Conference, with the help of Mrs.Elvinaben Desai, and the Ass.Pastor Rev.S.S.Gohil and Mrs.Graceben, he was instrumental for the spiritual growth of the church. He used to visit church members regularly enduring severe cold,heat waves and rain in spite of his old age. The church could avail of his services only up to 31-12-1977.

Rev.P.T.Christian was appointed as pastor as 3rd Pastor of our church from 1-1-1978. In the very begaining of his ministry unfortunately he had to part with 25 families of the church as they were given farewell by the church to join the fresly established Bethany Jubilee Church.Till now the church had priviladge of having two pastor. But from now on Rev P.T.Christian had to shoulder the responsibility of the church and the social center single-handedly. He serred the church very diligently and was able to get love of the members of the church. With the help of his wife Mrs. Shantaben , he was able to cope up with the responsibilities pertaining to the church and the social center very well. But as the Gujarat Regional Conference appointed him as the District Superintendent, the Church bid him farewell on 31-1-1981.

The young and energetic pastor Rev. Philip G. Macwan was given transfer from the Gandhinagat Church to the Shahpur church. He took over the reins as 4th Pastor of the Shahpur Methodist Church from 1-2-1981. He and his wife Mrs. Stellaben began to serve the church enthusiastically. He started prayer meetings every Thursday morning. During his tenure the front portion of the church building was renovated, a miinarette was erected and church bell was positioned over it. The inauguration ceremony of the church bell was presided over by the D.S.Rev. M.N.Solanki on 08/12/1985.Rev. Philip G. Macwan served the church for five years. He was transferred to the mother church-the Raikhad Methodist Church. He was given farewell on 25/5/1986 from Shahpur church.

The incumbent pastor Rev. B.S.Parmar took over the charge as a 5th pastor of Shahpur Methodist Church from 01/06.1986. He was treasurer of Gujarat Regional Conference. It was an additional responsibility for him, yet he served the church very sincerely all these years. His sermons were not lengthy and still they nurtured the spiritual life of the church members. In order to strengthen the spiritual life of the church members, he started a small library. On special occasions like Christmas, New year and marriages the church had to bring chairs on rent, he entreated the members of the church for chairs and he got very good response. The church had one hundred new chairs.

A new church was organized to the west of the river Sabarmati, so few families opted to join the new church. They were given send-off by the church. Rev. B.S.parmar started a new tradition of observing a Thanksgiving Day on one of the Sunday of month of November, and taught us to be thankful to the Lord for his blessings. He also introduced to have tea-time fellowship after the worship service on Sunday once twice a month, so that there can be more closer relation among the members of the church.The Mahila Mandal(WSCS) has became more active on account of efforts by Mrs. Meriben Parmar, wife of the Pastor.

The church was new but leading layman like Mr. Mansing Jethalal, Mr. Jecob k. Chouhan, Mr. T.B.Shah, Mr. Cornalious V. Chouhan, Mr. Solomon R. Makwan assisted the Pastor to make the Shahpur church more spiritual and more Vibrant.


Previous Pastors

Rev. G.T.Johnson - 1973-1975

Rev. S.S.Gohil (Asst. Pastor) - 1973-1977

Rev. R.B.Desai - 1975-1977

Rev. P.T.Christian - 1978-1980

Rev. Philip Macwan - 1980-1986

Rev. B.S.Parmar - 1986-2002

Rev. Arvindkumar Wesley - 2002-2005

Rev. Cornelius Macwan - 2005-2007

Rev. Ashok Parmar - 2007 - 2012

Rev. Vijay Mekwan - 2012 - till date