BENJAMIN FRANKLIN ROGERS
March 31, 1840 - November 3, 1915
Compiled By Jack L. Ray, Minister
Lehman Avenue Church of Christ
Bowling Green, Kentucky
Introduction And Acknowledgements
Outline Of Life Of B.F. Rogers
Chronology Of The Life Of B.F. Rogers
Life And Work Of B.F. Rogers by Ben F. Taylor
Various Reports Sent To Gospel Advocate - Report 1
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Genealogy Of The B.F. Rogers Family
Approximately a quarter of a century ago, I became interested in the life of Benjamin Franklin Rogers when I read his short biography in H. Leo Boles' Biographical Sketches of Gospel Preachers. When I learned that his granddaughter, Irene Ward, was a member here at the Lehman Avenue Church of Christ, it renewed my interest in this man of God. I learned that many of his descendants were not aware of this great and good ancestor. Two years ago, I decided to research his life and learn all that I could about him and his work as a school teacher and preacher.
Every page of the Gospel Advocate from 1866 to 1915 has been examined for reports and articles written by him or about him. Most of these are contained in this booklet. Photocopies of the record book of the Richpond Church of Christ regarding him were made. The publication The Way edited by James. A. Harding (1899-1903) was also examined page by page. Every known first hand source was checked.
The compiler hopes that B. F. Rogers' descendants will not only be proud of their godly ancestor but they too will want to emulate his good life. His life has been a blessing to many, including me as the sermon on December 10, 2000 at the Lehman Avenue Church of Christ, Bowling Green, KY mentions and is included in this booklet.
I want to acknowledge special thanks to those who have significantly contributed to this booklet. Virginia Mutchler helped in the research. Alma Smith shared her picture of the original Richpond church building. David Howard, librarian at David Lipscomb University and Thomas Malefatto, Assistant Archivist at the Indiana University library helped me obtain valuable information. J. A. Floyd, Jr., who has distinguished himself as an accurate source for information about the American Restoration Movement, directed me to several source books. Finally, I wish to thank Mary Lois Hughes, Secretary at Lehman Avenue, without whom this booklet would never have been completed. She has spent many hours, on this project.
There are many things we do not know about B. F. Rogers' life. What we do know makes us respect and appreciate him. -Jack L. Ray
BENJAMIN FRANKLIN ROGERS:
HE BEING DEAD STILL SPEAKS Text: Hebrews 11:4
Proposition: That B. F. Rogers was a man who patterned his life after Jesus Christ and His teachings and therefore (1) worked for the unity of all who claimed to be Christians, (2) taught all that His Lord commanded, (3) publicly taught against alcoholic beverages because of what it did to youth and families, (4) was an example of Christlikeness especially in kindness, and (5) had a strong desire to live in Heaven with his family and his Lord.
I. "By faith Abel offered to God a more excellent sacrifice than Cain, through which he obtained witness that he was righteous, God testifying of his gifts; and through it he being dead still speaks." Hebrews 11:4
A. Notice how the verse ends, "and through it he being dead still speaks."
B. Abel has been dead for many centuries, but he "still speaks."
C. His message is that if we walk by faith, doing what God has commanded, we will be acceptable to God and be accounted righteous.
D. Abel still speaks to us through his life.
E. Hebrews 11 is a chapter where God tells us of the lives of righteous men and women, who although have been dead for many centuries, still speaks to us through the lives they lived.
II. There was born in Monroe County, Indiana on March 31, 1840 a boy named Benjamin Franklin Rogers that, like Abel, was to become a man of deep faith in God.
A. Because of his righteous life, even though he has been dead for 85 years, he "still speaks."
B. Our lesson today is entitled: BENJAMIN FRANKLIN ROGERS: HE BEING DEAD STILL SPEAKS.
C. His granddaughter, Irene Ward, is one of our members here at the Lehman Avenue Church of Christ.
D. Several of his descendants are present today.
1. They have every right to be proud of an ancestor like B. F. Rogers.
2. We consider them our honored guests.
III. What did his contemporaries say about him?
A. E. G. Sewell: "Brother B. F. Rogers lives there (Richpond, KY), and teaches school and preaches there and elsewhere in that section of country, and is doing great good throughout that whole section of country. He is a quiet, unassuming man, and his daily life is winning for him a name that is far above riches. Such men are a great blessing in any community." (Gospel Advocate, 1893, pg. 366)
B. H. Leo Boles, President of David Lipscomb College: "Brother Rogers lived a life consistent with the spirit and teachings of Christ. His life counted as much or more for the cause of Christ in that community than did his public preaching." (Gospel Advocate, 1930, p. 1094)
C. M. L. Moore:
1. "Our dear brother B. F. Rogers, who has been a valiant soldier of the cross for many years, often came to the meetings and aided us greatly in the work." (Gospel Advocate, 1911, p. 1238)
2. "Our dear brother B. F. Rogers, of Rich Pond, KY, fell asleep in Jesus on November 3, 1915," and later added "....the Lord whom he loved and served unto the end." (Gospel Advocate, 1915, pg. 1255)
D. The men who knew him best testified that he was a quiet, humble, dedicated man whose preaching about Christ was seen in his daily life.
1. He reminds us of the Apostle Paul: Galatians 2:20.
2. B. F. Rogers patterned his life after Jesus Christ and His teachings.
a. This is well documented.
b. Permitted me to share with you the conclusions the written evidence warrants and the evidence itself.
I. B. F. Rogers worked for the unity of all who claimed to be Christians.
A. His granddaughter, Irene Ward, has his Bible and let me examine it.
1. I found in it 6 of his sermon outlines in his own handwriting.
a. 2 of them are entitled "The Union of Christians."
b. Although written in pencil and very small it is 98% legible.
2. "Union" was a word often used for "Unity" by his generation.
B. Permit me to share with you some of the points on "Unity" that he stressed.
1. He began by reading John 17 - the Lord's prayer for unity of all Christians.
2. He followed this with Ephesians 4:13: "Till we all come into the unity of the faith."
3. "The army of God ought to present an unbroken front to the world."
4. "Is it the will of God that we be one?
"Jesus prayed for it. John 17:20-21
"Paul condemns division. I Cor. 1:10-13"
5. "Is this Union of Christians practiced now? If it is desirable and the will of God it certainly can be accomplished.. "How? `In faith unity - in opinions liberty - in all things charity.' "Creeds formed by men cannot be the basis of union...
"The Divine Creed - The Bible - the true basis of unity
"We can be one in faith, but not in opinion."
6. He believed that the Bible alone was our standard in religion and that we could unite on what it said.
C. In 1894, he reported on the "opening of a new house of Worship... in Barren County."
1. Notice what he said about "the opening discourse" - the sermon - "He spoke well, presenting `our plea for the Union of Christians."' (Gospel Advocate, 1894, pg. 383)
2. Unity - restoring New Testament Christianity - was one of the priorities of his life.
D. This deep conviction about unity led to the establishment of the church at Richpond.
1. When he moved to Rich Pond in 1873 with his family to teach school, he also began to preach some. (Gospel Advocate, 1915, p. 734)
2. A denominational preacher lived across the street and became so upset with brother Rogers' preaching of New Testament Christianity and unity that he challenged Rogers for a debate. (Ben F. Taylor, History of Potter Orphan Home, p. 38)
a. Rogers asked E. G. Sewell to represent New Testament Christianity in the debate with T. C. Frogge.
b. A gospel meeting followed the debate "which resulted in forty-three persons obeying the gospel." Ibid.
3. B. F. Rogers and E. G. Sewell "organized a Church of Christ in the schoolroom" at Rich Pond on May 12, 1874. (Gospel Advocate, 1915, pg. 734)
4. M. L. Moore wrote in a tribute to him: "The result of his noble life is seen in the good congregation at Rich Pond for which he is largely responsible." (Gospel Advocate, 1915, pg. 1255)
E. How he loved to preach and promote the unity of all who claimed to be Christians on the only standard on which it can truly be achieved, the Bible!
1. It is a unity based on the Word of God alone.
2. Unquestionably, such a unity would please God and answer Jesus' prayer for unity.
II. B. F. Rogers loved the gospel and resolved to teach all that His Lord commanded.
A. He commended C. E. W. Dorris for the way he preached in a gospel meeting at Richpond in 1910 i.e. he "uses nothing but the gospel to induce persons to turn from sin to God." (Gospel Advocate, 1910, pg. 1093)
1. Romans 1:16
2. 2 Thessalonians 2:14
B. "Let us be up and going in all the world, and preaching the gospel to the whole creation, for no doubt there are many waiting to hear the gospel as the apostles preached it, and who will gladly embrace it." (Gospel Advocate, 1894, pg. 383)
C. He preached in the sick room of a 21 year old teacher at her request. He quoted and taught Matthew 28:19. The teacher desired to obey the gospel and was baptized in the Gasper River by brother Rogers. (Gospel Advocate, 1890, pg. 363)
D. Because his Lord taught the essentially of baptism so did he. Mark 16:16
1. He reported baptizing three adults at Sweeney's Mill on June 3, 1883, "after having preached a short sermon from I Peter 3:20-21." (Gospel Advocate, 1883, pg. 375)
2. He reported in the Gospel Advocate 1896 (pg. 349): "We have just closed a very interesting meeting at this place, with seven added to the church. They `heard, believed, and were baptized."' This is a quote from Acts 18:8.
a. One of those 7 was his youngest daughter, 12 year old Sue Francis, who would later become the mother of our sister Irene Ward.
b. M. L. Moore wrote: "Four children blessed his home ... all of them have given their lives to the Lord and are emulating the noble example of their dear father." (Gospel Advocate, 1915, pg. 1255)
(I. B. F. Rogers kept his Lord's command in Ephesians 6:4 and because of it we have enjoyed and benefited from the life of Irene Ward.
III. Publicly taught against alcoholic beverages because of what it did to youth and families.
A. He wrote in a letter to E. G. Sewell: Gospel Advocate, 1915, pg. 734.[Extract from letter to E. G. Sewell.]
I can now see the guiding hand of Providence in bringing me to Rich Pond, Ky., as I never saw it before. In 1873 I was principal of the high school at Cave City. I had been there only a year when I resolved to leave the place on account of the saloons. Some of the larger boys had imbibed too freely. There were two places that wanted me--Lee Seminary and Rich Pond. So I went to the Lord in prayer, asking him to make known in some way where he would have me go. Next day two men came up from Rich Pond and offered such Inducements that I accepted their proposition. When we arrived here, a protracted meeting of the Methodist Episcopal Church was in full blast in the schoolroom. I said to my wife: "We have come to the backwoods, surely."
1. He believed in the Providence of God. Romans 8:28
2. He believed in prayer. I John 3:22
3. He had already witnessed what alcohol does to youth - the youth attending the school at Cave City.
4. Proverbs 20:1
B. Irene's mother, Sue Francis, told her how her father boldly preached and taught in his school and in the pulpit against the evils of alcoholic beverages, for which those who imbibed persecuted him.
1. Many mornings, he would find whiskey bottles on his fence around his house.
2. His detached study with an excellent library mysteriously burned one night.
a. There was nothing in it to start a fire.
b. It was unquestionably an arsonist.
C. B. F. Rogers helped greatly to make Warren County a better moral community in which to live.
IV. B. F. Rogers was a Christlike example especially in kindness.
A. Irene remembers her mother telling her that brother Rogers had a saddle horse named Nell. When anyone would call for help, he would go regardless of the time, "He would just saddle `old Nell' and go. Some were sick and possibly dying. He would go and pray for them and stay the night with them." (Private interview with Irene Ward on July 14, 1999)
B. In a tribute to him, M. L. Moore wrote: "He was a model of kindness, and we loved him dearly." (Gospel Advocate, 1915-1255)
1. Ephesians 4:32 2. Proverbs 19:22
V. B. F. Rogers had a strong desire to live in Heaven with his family and his Lord.
A. I went through his Bible, page by page - examined every page.
1. There were very few marks in it.
2. Three of the Scriptures marked were about the "Book of Life."
a. Exodus 32:32
b. Revelation 20:12-15 - marked with a marginal note "Book of Life"
c. Revelation 21:27 - marked with a note over it "Book of Life"
d. He wanted to be in the "Book of Life" in order to go to Heaven.
B. When his son Clarence died at age 19 (April 25, 1892) of consumption, B. F. Rogers wrote: "Oh! our hearts are sad, and our home is lonely without him, but heaven seems much nearer to us now than ever before, and we know it will not be long till we will be with him forevermore. How thankful we are for the sweet promises of the gospel. (Gospel Advocate, 1892, pg. 316)
C. One of the last things written about him was that he was patient in his final sufferings and "longed to go home.. "(Gospel Advocate, 1915, pg. 1255)
D. He chose the way that is right and can't be wrong. 2 Peter 1:10
1. Let's all choose that way.
VI. B. F. Rogers summarized his life in a private letter to a personal friend, E. G. Sewell: (Gospel Advocate, 1915, pg. 734)
And now I come to the main point I wish to make. I have been a humble instrument in the hands of God of starting. a wonderful work in this part of the country that will continue as long as the world stands. More than three hundred persons have taken their stand of the Bible with us. Many of these have died, others have moved away, but we still have a strong congregation. Then, Brother Clinton Potter obeyed the gospel here. Sister Mollie was already a Christian. Their son, Eldon, also obeyed the gospel. These were all members of the Rich Pond church. And when Eldon died, Brother Clinton and Sister Mollie resolved to put his estate (to which they added more) in the Potter Bible School, and this now is the Potter Orphanage. What wonderful results has God wrought if my case!
A. Instrumental in leading over 300 people to Christ in the Richpond community alone!
B. Helped convert Clinton Potter who, with his wife, alone provided the finances to start Potter Bible College (1901-1913).
1. Many preachers were trained there and there are many reports by these preachers in the Gospel Advocate beginning in 1902.
2. Some of those preachers were:
a. Clarence G. Vincent - Missionary to Japan, 1911-1916 and served churches in Michigan, Texas, Ohio and Indiana (Preachers of Today Vol. I, p. 354)
b. Jasper G. Malphurs - preached in Bowling Green and Fulton, KY and 6 other states (Gussie Lambert, In Memoriam, p. 173)
c. John L. Rainey -his first sermon was at Corinth near Smith's Grove, KY. Preached in Louisville and Jeffersonville. (Gospel Advocate, 1976, pg. 165)
(I. He was my Greek Teacher!
(II. One of my benefactors is B. F. Rogers!
C. He also helped to establish Bethel and Locust Grove congregations in Simpson County, KY.
I. We are indebted to men like B. F. Rogers.
A. Through his family and church family, he has made Warren County and our country a better place in which to live.
B. Churches exist which are still preaching and teaching the Bible.
II. B. F. Rogers: He Being Dead Still Speaks
A. If he was in this pulpit right now, he would urge us to:
1. Put our faith in Jesus Christ
2. Repent of our sins
3. Be baptized - immersed in water - as Christ taught in order to be forgiven of our sins.
B. He would urge us to make unity of all Christians based on the Bible alone as a priority in our lives.
C. He would urge us to be kind and morally good.
D. He would want to live in Heaven with us.
CHRONOLOGY OF BENJAMIN FRANKLIN ROGERS
1840 Born on March 31 in Monroe County, IN
Parents: Benjamin and Elizabeth Arnold Rogers
1857 Entered Indiana University
1861 Graduated from Indiana University in a class of 22 students
1862-65 Apparently did not fight in the Civil War for Indiana University has a record of all its
graduates who were in the War and B. F. Rogers is not included. 1870 Moved to Kentucky and taught school near Glasgow
1871 Married Mary Frances Jordan at Glasgow, KY
1873 Principal of High School at Cave City, KY
1873 Moved to Rich Pond, KY to open a school
1874 He and E. G. Sewell "organized a Church of Christ in the schoolroom" at Rich Pond on May 12. 1874 October 12, Mary Frances gave up the Presbyterian church and was baptized into Christ. An especially joyous day for B. F. Rogers
1879 October 15, performed the wedding of Clinton C. Potter and Mary J. Dunn at the Potter Homestead on Three Springs Road.
1881 December 2, performed the wedding of Hugh Potter and Sallie E. Read 1883 A church building was completed at Rich Pond
1883 June 3, baptized 3 adults at Sweeney's Mill after speaking on I Peter 3:20-21 1883 September 18, Sue Frances Rogers born
1884 August 23, took his first trip to TN and preached in a gospel meeting at Bush's Chapel, Sumner County, resulting in five new Christians.
1885 August, moved to Oakland, KY where he taught school and preached for two or three congregations
1887 October 12 returned to Rich Pond
1889 September 17, son Clarence baptized
1890 April 20, baptized in the Gasper River Miss Lou Sweatt, a 21 year old teacher 1892 April 25, Clarence died at age 19
1896 May, Sue Frances Rogers baptized
1896 Preached once a month for Bethel church, Simpson County
1913 September, preached in a gospel meeting at Rich Pond with J. P Ezell and M. L. Moore
1913 October 22, performed at Rich Pond the wedding of Clarke Speck and Miss Sammie Duval of the
Beckton community of Barren County, KY.
1915 November 3, died at his home in Rich Pond, KY
Funeral conducted by M. L. Moore and J. Pettey Ezell and interment at Fairview Cemetery, Bowling Green, KY. His youngest daughter, Sue Frances, gave birth to his granddaughter, Madie Sue, on November 2 and could not attend her father's funeral.
LIFE AND WORK OF BENJAMIN FRANKLIN ROGERS
AS REPORTED IN 1956 BY
BEN F. TAYLOR, HISTORY OF POTTER ORPHAN HOME (Pages 36-40)
It would be a great injustice were I to pass silently over and without due regard to the great work of Brother Benjamin Franklin Rogers. After much reflection on the life and work of this noble saint of the Lord I would like to begin with a, quotation from C. H. Spurgeon; "The serene, silent beauty of a holy life is the most powerful influence in the world, next to the might of the Spirit of God." And one from Henry Ward Beecher; "He is greatest whose strength carries up the most hearts by the attraction of his own." From what I have learned of the life and work of Brother Rogers let me add to the above. The riches of his nature, the humility of his manners, the deep convictions of his heart made him a power among men.
Benjamin Franklin Rogers, son of Benjamin and Elizabeth Arnold Rogers, was born in Monroe County, Indiana March 31, 1840. He entered Indiana University, Bloomington, Indiana in 1857 at the age of seventeen and was graduated in a class of twenty-two students in 1861 at the age of twenty-one.
I have copied the following from a record of the graduates of the Indiana University.
Class OF 1861
"Benjamin Franklin Rogers, born in Monroe County, Indiana March 31, 1840. Degrees A.B. and A.M. Occupation, teaching and preaching. Principle and Proprietor of Rich Pond Academy at Rich Pond Grove, Kentucky. Elder in the Christian Church."
After teaching for some years in Indiana he went to Glasgow, Kentucky to teach. His mother having died, he took his ten year old sister with him and cared for her until she married some fifteen years later. In Glasgow he married Miss Mary F. Jordan in 1871. From Glasgow he went to Cave City, Kentucky where he taught for three or four years. He next taught at Oakland, Kentucky. While teaching in Oakland he was offered the position of President of a University in Ohio but he received also an invitation to start a school in Rich Pond Grove, Kentucky. After long consideration and many earnest prayers he accepted the invitation to locate at Rich Pond where he located in 1873.
It is not rare to find the thought and character of an entire community molded and shaped by some outstanding personality. Such was the case of the Rich Pond community. Brother Rogers exerted an influence which became the lasting warp and woof of the moral and spiritual life of the Rich Pond community.
When Brother Rogers came to Rich Pond to teach, there was no church after the New Testament pattern. So far as I have been able to find, the only member of the church of Christ in that vicinity was Sister Mary J. Potter who confessed her faith in Christ March 8, 1859 and was baptized into Christ March 9, 1859 at the Pleasant Hill church near Oakland, Kentucky under the preaching of Elder Smith.
We owe much to men of like devotion who have carried the unsearchable riches of Christ to communities that have known nothing but the darkness of sectarianism.
As that heap of carefully piled stones, dedicated by tears, as a memorial to the beloved Rachel spoke eloquently to Jacob of his loss, and the passing of generations, the gathering moss of centuries, and the changes of time have not robbed that memorial of its tongue.
So the church at Rich Pond through more than three quarters of a century of faithful devotion to the Lord and fidelity to the word of God is the outgrowth of what was in the beginning the lone efforts of a great soul. This church is a living monument of the labors of Brother Benjamin Franklin Rogers.
The work of the Lord progressed at Rich Pond mainly because of the zeal and untiring efforts of Brother B. F. Rogers. His preaching and private teaching presented the, gospel plan of salvation so clearly as to expose the false position of the Methodist church which was the religious body in that community. The Methodist preacher, T. C. Frogge, lived directly across the street from Brother Rogers. He became so disturbed over the influence of the preaching of Brother Rogers that he challenged Brother Rogers for a public discussion. Brother Rogers selected Brother E. G. Sewell to represent the church of Christ. Bro. Sewell preached for about two weeks after the debate which resulted in forty-three persons obeying the gospel. This was the beginning of the church of Christ in Rich Pond. Brother Clinton C. Potter confessed his faith in Christ and was baptized by Brother E. G. Sewell in March 1874.
The interest in the work of the Lord increased to the extent that a congregation of the New Testament church was organized at Rich Pond May 12, 1874 by Bro. E. G. Sewell. with the following persons as charter members.
R. E. Cooksey
B. F. Rogers
P. T. Potter
C. C. Potter
Mary J. Potter
M. C. Feland
J. H. Stevens
Of this number R. E. Cooksey and B. F. Rogers were selected as elders while P. T. Potter and C. C. Potter were selected as deacons. Thus we see that Bro. Clint Potter became active in the church from its very beginning at Rich Pond, Kentucky.
There was, perhaps, no other day at Rich Pond that brought quite so much joy to the great heart of Bro. Rogers as October 12, 1874 when his own dear wife was baptized into Christ. She had been a member of the Presbyterian Church. During 1874 six other persons were baptized and Sister Mollie C. Lively was received into the fellowship of the church by letter August 16, 1874. During 1875 eight were baptized and nine were 'baptized during 1876. Brother Hugh Potter was baptized May 21,. 1876 and was a faithful member during his long life and for many years was one of the able Bible teachers of the Rich Pond church. Sister Sallie Potter was baptized in August of 1882. Eldon S. Potter, son of Sister Mary J. Potter, and Clarence H. Rogers, son of Bro. and Sister B. F. Rogers, were baptized September 17, 1889. These two fine Christian young men were the closest of friends during their lives.
To the supreme joy of Bro. Rogers the church made steady, healthy growth. He secured the assistance of several very able gospel preachers among whom were Brethren J. M. F. Smithson, the blind preacher, B. B. Tyler, of Cincinnati, Ohio, David Lipscomb, and the then well known Joe Hardin, better known as "Weeping Joe Hardin" and doubtless others of whom we have no account. In August of 1885 Bro. Rogers was given a letter to Oakland but returned to Rich Pond October 12, 1887 and made it his home during the remainder of his life.
Brother Joe Hardin assisted in a meeting in September 1882 and a movement was started to build a meeting house which resulted in a subscription paper being circulated among the Rich Pond members to raise the amount of money needed. This paper was as follows. "We the undersigned agree to pay the sum annexed to our names for the purpose of erecting a House of Worship in the town of Rich Pond on the South-west cornerof B. F. Rogers' lot, to be the property of the Church of Christ.
Payable when ever called for by the Finance Committee. Rich Pond, Ky., Sept. 7, 1882.
P. T. Potter - $200.00
Flavus Walters - $50.00 ($25.00 cash, $25.00 work)
J. P. Smith - $150.00
R. E. Cooksey - $100.00
J. C. Smith & Wife - 15.00
Hugh Potter - 25.00
Pressie Potter - 5.00
Jonathan Smith- $50.00 ($25.00 cash, $25.00 work)
Gainie Cooksey - $5.00
Carrie Stallard - $5.00
Robert Walters - $10.00 ($5.00 cash, $5.00 hauling)
W. Loyd - $10.00 (Ten. days work)
Fayette Price - $5.00
H. Heckman - $10.00
James Johnson - $30.00 (20 days work)
Mrs. S. Heckman - $5.00 (Over pulpit one swinging l amp)
L. L. Deaver - $30.00 (One third of his work)
W. A. McDonald - $5.00 (Work)
J. W. Read - $30.00 (One third of his work)
Richard Smith - $15.00
C. Risley - $10.00 (Ten days work)
M. C. Feland 50.00
C. C. Potter 200.00
Total amount $1,015.00
This building was completed and dedicated in 1883. This must have been a happy day for Bro. Rogers. Truly his labor had not been in vain in the Lord. A man of less consecration might have lived in Rich Pond under conditions like those found by Bro. Rogers and the church never would have been started.
Various Reports Sent In To Gospel Advocate - Report 01
July 22, 1915
GOD'S GUIDING HAND.
BY B. F. ROGERS.
[Extract from letter to E. G. Sewell.]
I can now see the guiding hand of Providence in bringing me to Rich Pond, Ky., as I never saw It before. In 1873 I was principal of the high school at Cave City. I had been there only a year when I resolved to leave the place on account of the saloons. Some of the larger boys had imbibed too freely. There were two places that wanted me-Lee Seminary and Rich Pond. So I went to the Lord in prayer, asking him to make known in some way where he would have me go. Next day two men came up from Rich Pond and offered such inducements that I accepted their proposition. When we arrived here, a protracted meeting of the Methodist Episcopal Church was In full blast in the schoolroom. I said to my wife: "We have come to the backwoods, surely.
I opened school and had a fine school. I Immediately made an appointment to preach once a month. I found we had a few disciples In the neighborhood. I spoke on themes in which we did not differ from the denominations. But I soon saw that as my hearers increased they wished to know where I stood. So I announced that I would begin a series of sermons on first principles. Before I began, some of the patrons of the school advised me to get some one else to do this preaching. So it was decided to have you come. You came, and continued to come once a month, with the result that you organized a church of Christ in the schoolroom. This occurred on May 16, 1874, just a little more than a year after we began operations here. It was stirring times. People read their Bibles as they never read them before. The debate between you and Elder Frogge resulted in a glorious victory for the truth.
And now I come to the main point I wish to make. I have been a humble instrument in the hands of God of starting a wonderful work in this part of the country that will continue as long as the world stands. More than three hundred persons have taken their stand on the Bible with us. Many of these have died, others have moved away, but we still have a strong congregation. Then, Brother Clinton Potter obeyed the gospel here. Sister Mollie was already a Christian. Their son, Eldon, also obeyed the gospel. These were all members of the Rich Pond church. And when Eldon died, Brother Clinton and Sister Mollie resolved to put his estate (to which they added more) in the Potter Bible School, and this now is the Potter Orphanage. What wonderful results has God wrought in my case!
DECEMBER 9, 1915
Our dear brother, B. F. Rogers, of Rich Pond, Ky., fell asleep in Jesus on November 3, 1915, having lived for Jesus many years. He was horn near Bloomington, Ind., on March 31, 1840. He was well equipped for the great work he did in this life, having graduated from Indiana University at an early age. When near thirty years of age, he came to Kentucky and taught school near Glasgow. Here he spent much of his time in preaching the gospel on every occasion that offered Itself. It was thus that he became that forceful preacher that he was, as well as a teacher of extraordinary ability.
In 1871 he was married to Miss Mary F. Jordan, of Glasgow, who survives him. From Glasgow he went to Cave City, Ky., where he continued to preach and to teach. From here he moved to Rich Pond, where the larger part of his life In Kentucky was spent. Four children blessed his home Clarence, Frank J., Madie, and Sudie. All of them have given their lives to the Lord and are emulating the noble example of their dear father. Clarence preceded his father to the other aide, where he was watching and . waiting for his dear father. The other children live near Rich Pond, and were a constant comfort to their father, who was happy in their company.
The result of his noble life is seen in the good congregation at Rich. Pond, for which he is largely responsible. Through his influence Brother E. G. Sewell was brought to Rich Pond and the cause planted there. We miss him sorely. Last Lord's day as his son, Frank, led in the communion service, as we had so often seen his father do, there was hardly a dry eye in the audience. He was a model of kindness, and we loved him dearly; but he has gone home to be with the Lord whom he loved and served to the end. He was patient through all his suffering and longed to go home. He was a special blessing too the writer In giving needed encouragement. A large and sorrowing audience gathered at the house of worship at Rich Pond, where services were held by Brother J. Pettey Ezell and the writer. The body of our dear brother was then placed in the cemetery at Bowling Green, Ky. May the Lord bless Sister Rogers and the children.
Making the train at Nashville at 1:55 P. M. on Sat. May the 9th, we had a pleasant run of near three hours, to Rich Pond Station, about three miles from Locust Grove. At this station we delivered a discourse that night, on the Gospel as the power of God unto Salvation, to those who believe and obey the same.
On Lord's day morning we went to Locust Grove meeting house, which was built for all to preach in, but none wore to establish churches there, except the Methodists, and they have had a church there for a long while, and have held the ground with almost undisputed sway. We reported a meeting there some two months ago with seven additions.
We continued the meeting on Monday and Monday night, and received one more addition from the Methodists; a lady who had once been a disciple, but through force of surrounding influences had gone to the Methodists, but said she bad never been satisfied, and that she desired to return and live with the brethren. There are some eighteen or twenty disciples in this community, and on Tuesday all met at Rich Pond Station again, and enrolled their names, and agreed to try to keep house for the Lord at that place. They will meet for the present in the school house, where Bro. Rogers is carrying on a flourishing school, and who will also preach for the brethren there and elsewhere in that community. Bro. Rogers is a useful man, and we wish him good Success.
Report 4 DECEMBER 17,1874, P. 1186
Embracing the third Lord's day of October we held a meeting at Locust; Grove Kentucky, resulting in two; accessions to the congregation. One; of them the wife of Bro. B. F. Rogers; who teaches school at Rich Pond, near Locust Grove, and :preaches for the brethren on Lord's days in that; section of country. The cause is' gradually gaining ground in that community, in spite of all the opposition brought to bear against it. We also held a meeting with the brethren at Allensville Ky., in connection with our much esteemed brother C. X, Day, who preaches regularly for the church there, embracing the third and fourth Lord's days in Oct., resulting in three immersions. The Baptists had just closed a long exciting meeting, and the people were tired out going to meeting, and besides we had rainy weather part of the time. Still we had a very pleasant and interesting meeting, and we trust a profitable one. We have a band of earnest brethren and sisters there, but like many other places, they have strong opposition to contend against but if they will be faithful, success is theirs.
Report 5 JUNE 29, 1876, P. 623
Our good friend, sister Carrie E. Jones of Rich Pond, Ky., was united in marriage on the 21st inst. to Dr. L. Stallard of Memphis Junction, Ky. The ceremony took place at. the residence of Mr. Jo. J. Smith at 6 o'clock in the morning-Bro. B. F. Rogers officiating. The ADVOCATE unites its good wishes with those of a host of other friends.
Bro. B. F. Rogers' school closed last week. He expects to visit friend in Barren Co:, Ky, for the next three or four weeks.
Report 6 SEPTEMBER 14,1876, P. 896-897 Meeting at Bethel, Simpson Co., Ky.
On the first Lord's day in September, we commenced a meeting at the above-named place, which lasted four days, and resulted in four assessions to the little band of disciples at that place. The congregation has but recently been built up. Nearly all the members have come in within the last two years, and that, too, in the age of very strong opposition. The brethren have just erected a very neat and comfortable house of worship, and this was the first meeting in it. On Lord's Day the house did not hold much more, if any, than half the people. We have but seldom seen so large a crowd assemble on such an occasion, and the behavior and attention were excellent. Bethel meeting house is in the midst of an intelligent and thriving community, and the neighbors aided liberally in erecting the house, and showed us great respect during the meeting, giving us a good hearing, and manifesting much interest. Bro. B. F. Rogers, from Rich Pond was with us on Lord's day, and Monday Bro. W. S. Dabney, from Texas, carne in, and remained till near the close of the meeting, and preached one discourse for us. We find Bro. Dabney an earnest man, and sound in the faith once delivered to the saints.
The brethren here went into what is usually called an organization, and agreed to meet the first day of every week to keep the ordinances of the Lord's house.
This congregation, and the one at Locust Grove, have both been built within a little over the past two years, nearly entirely through our humble efforts, by the power of truth; other brethren have preached occasionally, and brother Rogers, who lives at Rich Pond, and teaches school there, has done good service at that place. Thus while some are accusing the ADVOCATE of discouraging evangelizing work, its editors are regularly persevering in doing evangelizing work all the time, and that, too, without any plans, or missionary boards other than the churches.
And moreover, we are satisfied that there is not any more effective evangelical work done anywhere by the same number of preachers, than is done regularly by the preachers of Middle Tennessee. Without noise, and without human plans, they are pressing forward and working for the Lord's Cause, and are likely as well sustained as that number of preachers anywhere, even in the midst of plans and societies. And we do not claim that we are doing anything like what we might do, in the blessing of God, in this country. And we hope the brethren will abound more and more in the work of the Lord. Sounding out the word of the Lord, is one of the works required of the Lord's people everywhere, and we would rejoice to see more, and still more of it done. And the Lord will certainly hold us responsible for the use that we make of our talent, in spreading the gospel, as rigidly as any other work in the Church of God. Let every child of God determine to do more in time to come, than in days past and gone. E.G.S.
Report 7 1877, P. 75
B. F. Rogers writes from Rich Pond Ky. that the examination of Billy Taylor's pamphlet entitled "Defects of Campbellite Repentance and Faith," by bro. Geo. G. Taylor is announced to take place at the "Knob (Baptist) Church" in his County on Thursday and Friday 1st and 2nd days of February.
Bro.. B. F. Rogers writes from Rich Pond, Ky., Feb. 10, '79
Please announce in the ADVOCATE, that Bro. J.M.F. Smithson has promised to hold a meeting for us at Rich Pond, Ky., including the 5th Lord's day in March and the 1st Lord's day in April. We expect to take him to Old Union, a meeting house five or six miles from here, on the 5th Lord's day in March, and after spending a few days there return here and preach a week. All well now. My little boys are just getting well of the measles.
B.F. Rogers, Rich Pond, Ky., September 5, writes: "On Saturday, August 23, I took my first trip to Tennessee. The brethren at Bush's Chapel, near South Tunnel, not having had any preaching for some time, sent for me to come and preach for them on the fourth Lord's day. I went and found some excellent brethren, and sisters there, and quite a number, also, "who once had a name to live, but are dead." On Lord's day our audience was not large, but at night we had a full house, and the brethren thought best to continue the meeting. We preached Monday and Monday night, and as the interest seemed to increase, we continued the meeting, closing Friday night. Five baptisms, and a few straying ones returned, and many for the brethren were renewed in strength. We had good attention and order, and we trust the seed sown will produce an abundant harvest. I expect to visit them on each fourth Lord's day until they can do better."
Report 10 Gospel Advocate, 1881, page 632
This is to inform the readers of the ADVOCATE that the earthly labors of sister Julia A. Holland are ended. She was the beloved consort of Bro. R. F. Holland, of Warren County, Ky., and daughter of Sister Sweatt, (who is blind,) of Butler County, and niece of Elder George Sweatt. Sister Holland was born April 20, 1844; married, January 13, 1864; quietly fell asleep in Jesus, September 7,1883. I think she obeyed the gospel quite early in life. She was a quiet, domestic lady, who loved the Lord and did good to all around her. She loved to hear the ancient gospel proclaimed, and to sing the praises of Jesus. She patiently bore her sickness of several weeks duration, and was rational till within a few minutes of her departure. The night before her spirit winged its flight, she called for her husband, and speaking that endearing but familiar name, she said: "Bob, I must soon leave you; I am going home, and want you to do the best you can without me; try to meet me in heaven." She then called for her two brothers, Robert and George, who are yet not in Christ, and begged them to prepare to meet her in heaven. To one who said, "Julia, is your moral sky clear?" she replied, "I have done what Jesus has commanded, and I know I am going to that good home." She then exhorted her friends to meet her in heaven. She also said, "Bob, do not weep for me; my sufferings are almost over." I write down these her last words for they are pleasing to her friends to remember. We all 1ike to call to mind the last words of our friends, especially when they are so full of faith and hope as were those of this dear sister, and yet her obedience to the gospel and her godly life are sufficient evidences of her present happiness. Reader Bro. Holland asks an interest in your prayers and mine, that he may be able to bear this affliction as becometh a Christian and that he may be fully prepared to meet his wife in that goodly land. Be it so. Amen.
B. F. ROGERS.
Rich Pond, Ky., September 17, 1883.
Report 11 THE GOSPEL ADVOCATE WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 9, 1887.
My next place to stop was Oakland Sta. Here I met Bro, Rogers, who teaches school in the place and preaches for two or three congregations on Lord's days. Having heard much of Bro. Rogers, I expected to find a zealous worker in the Lord's vineyard and very glad am I to say I was not disappointed. Together we visited many of the members of Oakland congregation. Bro. Ferguson preaches, once, a month at this place. I did not see very much of him. I preached for the congregation on Monday. Very few were present. I was very much surprised to find that the worship on Lord's day had been for sometime neglected. The members did not seem to think that it was a great deprivation not to hold in memory, the sufferings of Christ on every first day of the week. This was strange to me! We are commanded not to forsake the assembling of ourselves together and we learn that the disciples came together on the first day of the week to break bread, not to be entertained by hearing preaching. Brethren, how can you neglect this dear sweet communion with our sweet Savior. Before you do so think of his life of sorrow, toil and, privations, see him from fatigue and exhaustion sink beneath the weight of the cross, behold him as he is tried as a criminal and undergoes cruel tortures hear him pray, "Father forgive them they know not what they do," listen to that heart rending cry, "My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?" and by the power of faith place yourself amidst the darkness and quakings of nature; if then you find it not in your heart to enjoy this sweet privilege, icy indeed is your heart. This communing with my dear 'Savior is the sweetest hour of the Lord's day.
Bro .Rogers is making effort to get the brethren to meet regularly. Some have promised and it is to be hoped that they will make their promise good.
J. C. McQuiddy
Report 12 THE GOSPEL ADVOCATE: WEDNESDAY. JUNE 4. 1890 SWEATT
On Tuesday morning, May 13, 1890, the pure spirit of 'sister Lou Sweatt took its flight from its earthly tabernacle. She was a daughter of Bro. George Sweatt, who is the oldest Christian preacher in Warren county, Ky., and who has brought hundreds to Christ by his plain presentation of the . truth; Sister Lou was twenty-one last Sept. 1st just budding into woman-hood-and beginning to feel the responsibilities of life. She was a young lady of much promise of usefulness to the world. That she might qualify herself for greater usefulness, she attended my school during the spring of 1889. She was a close student, doing her duty faithfully and advanced rapidly. Her modest, womanly bearing won the hearts of all her acquaintances. Last fall she taught a very successful school near Galloway's Mill, although requiring much fortitude on her part for she was not well. She took cold, her lungs became involved and her strength rapidly gave way. Although an obedient daughter and a good and kind sister, and instructed in the word from her childhood, she delayed obedience to the gospel until about three weeks before she died. On the third Lord's day in April, by her request, I preached in her sick room to a goodly number of her kindred and neighbors, and at the close she made the good confession. We took her down to Gasper River which flows near her father's door, and, with the assistance of a young brother, I baptized her "into the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit." I hoped she would recover, but disease had fastened too strongly upon her and she gradually grew weaker. A few days before her departure she talked calmly of her death; telling her weeping parents, and brother and sisters not to weep for her, that she would soon be in that beautiful home above. I was requested to attend her funeral, and I spoke to the family and friends concerning the resurrection. She was buried in a beautiful spot in her father's orchard whence in the resurrection morn, will arise an "incorruptible body" and be reunited to her spirit which, we believe, is already with the Christ.
B. F. ROGERS
Rich Pond. Ky. May 27. 1890.
Report 13 THE GOSPEL ADVOCATE: WEDNESDAY. OCTOBER 9,1889 - Page 643
We are moving along slowly at this place. Our Sunday-school is well attended, and lives through the winter. We recently held a meeting of ten days, with six additions to the church, by confession and baptism, My eldest son, Clarence, was one of them.. You, Bro. Sewell, will remember him, as but a babe, when you baptized his mother about fifteen years ago. We rejoice greatly with thanks to our heavenly Father. Bro. D. J. Cochran began the preaching, and then Bro. J. W. Gant came to his assistance. These brethren are too well known to need any encomium from me; suffice it to say their part of the work was well done.
Rich Pond Sept. 29, '89
Report 14 THE GOSPEL ADVOCATE, THURSDAY, MAY 19, 1892. P.316 ROGERS.
Our dear son, Clarence H. Rogers, our first born, left us for the heavenly home, April 25th. He was 19 years, 7 months and 15 days old. He bad not been well for a year or more, but he did not complain much, and we did not think He was seriously affected until last January, when he took a severe cold and became quite sick. Our physician on examination, pronounced his case acute consumption, with but little hope of recovery. We did all we could to arrest the disease. For about three months he fought the disease bravely, and bore his sufferings patiently, but he gradually grew weaker until he quietly fell asleep in Christ. He confessed his faith in Christ when he was about seventeen years old, and was baptized by Bro. Gant. He took great delight in the worship of the Lord's house. Everybody loved him, and the ladies covered his grave with flowers. During his sickness he said so many good things, that his mother and I will never forget. He said: "Papa, do good people go straight to heaven when they die?" I said, " yes, dear." One day his mother and sister Sears were sitting by his bedside be said, "Sister Sears, you are a good woman, but a boy's best friend is his mother." He frequently sang the sweetest songs. One day when he sang about the pearly gates, he said: "The gates are thrown wide open, and the angels tell me welcome in." Then looking toward his mother he said, "Mamma I will meet you at the gate." Oh! our hearts are sad, and out home is lonely without him, but heaven seems much nearer to us now than ever before, and we know it will not be long till we will be with him forevermore. How thankful we are for the sweet promises of the gospel!
"A precious one from us has gone
A voice we loved is stilled;
A place is vacant in our home
Which never can be filled.
God in his wisdom has recalled
The boon his love has given,
And though the body molders here,
The soul is safe in heaven."
Rich Pond, KY. B. F. Rogers.
Report 15 1894, P. 383 KENTUCKY.
Rich Pond, June 7 - I attended the formal opening of a new house of worship at Grange Town, Barren county, Ky., on the fourth Lord's day in May. Near this house stands Hanging Fork meetinghouse, one of the oldest Baptist churches in the county. Two or three years ago Brother L. M. White preached occasionally in the schoolhouse at Grange Town. A. few were gathered into the Church of Christ. Brother George Taylor recently preached a week for them. It was during this meeting that an effort was made to close the schoolhouse against the brethren, and 'they fitted up another building, in which Brother Taylor preached. The brethren then resolved to build a house of their own. They erected a neat frame building, and opened it for worship on May 27. Brother R.H. Crossfield was invited to preach the opening discourse. He spoke well, presenting "our plea for the union of Christians." There was a large attendance, and dinner on the ground. In the afternoon the church was organized, elders being appointed by Brother White. On Monday night Brother Crossfield preached again, and Brother Jeff Henderson, nearly eighty-five years old, came forward to take his stand with us on the Bible. He desired to give his reasons for such a step. He said: "Forty-two years ago I confessed my Savior. I did not have so wonderful an experience to relate as some others, and after confessing him I knew there was something more to be done. So I went to the river, and was baptized by old Brother Witherspoon, and united with the Baptist Church. But I never did accept all their teachings. Some twenty years before I was baptized I became acquainted with the principles of the 'reformation' through a friend of my youthful days, who became a Baptist preacher first, but he went to Virgihia, and when he returned he was a preacher in the Christian Church. I united with the Baptist Church, for there was no Christian organization near, and now that we have one, I feel it to be my duty to come in with you. I have not always lived up to my duty, but I desire now to consecrate myself anew to the service of the Lord." Brother Henderson was gladly received by the little band of worshipers at Grange Town. Brethren, is it not sad to think that this aged brotber waited more than forty years for the preaching of the pure gospel? Let us be up and going in all the world, and preaching the gospel to the whole creation, for no doubt there are many waiting to hear the gospel as the apostles preached it, and who will gladly embrace it.
B. F. Rogers
Report 16 1883, p. 375
"We have had Bro. C. C. Cline with us a. few days. He began his lectures on Thursday evening, May 24th, and continued over the Lord's day following. His lectures are illustrated by charts, and he makes them both entertaining and instructive holds his audience spell-bound to the close and they only wish he had continued longer. His work here has made a lasting impression on the brethren, and on all who heard him. On Lord's day he presented his ladders of faith and apostasy with telling effect upon a large audience, and, on an invitation, Miss Lillie Hickman, her father and mother, (all of whom had been Methodists, as you know,) presented themselves, desirous of making the confession and being baptized. We baptized them yesterday, at Sweeney's Mill, in the presence of a large concourse of people, after having preached a short sermon from 1 Pet. iii: 24-21. Bro. Cline's beautiful songs, his earnest work, and stirring appeals, won the hearts of many who are not of us, and the church and Sunday-school have been revived, or, in other words, the church has been made to see the necessity of going to work in earnest to teach the Scriptures to young and old, "For the gospel is the power of salvation to every one that believeth." Bro. Cline is doing a much-needed and a noble work, and our prayer is, that he may be permitted, in the providence of God, to continue in this work. He has an appointment to be with the church in Bowling Green, Ky., the first Lord's day in July, and the three or four days preceding."
B. F. Rogers; Rich Pond, Ky., June 4, 1883.
Rich Pond, May 19.-We nave just closed a very interesting meeting at this place, with seven added to the church. They "heard, believed, and were baptized." The preaching was done by our beloved Brother Brown Godwin, of Franklin, Ky. The gospel was preached plainly, earnestly, lovingly; and it proved to be the " power of God unto salvation to those that believed, while others were `'warned and almost persuaded to* be Christians. Brother Godwln soon won the hearts of the brethren, and the good will of all who herd him. Our audience kept increasing to the close, and I believe that our meeting of twelve days closes too. soon. The most of those added were children of the brethren. One young lady was the first of her father's family to confess the Christ.
One was my youngest daughter of twelve years (SUE F. ROGERS); and now all of my family are in the church. One, our oldest boy, Clarence, four years ago passed over to the church of the firstborn. Rich Pond is the home of our aged Brother George Sweatt, who aided much in the meeting with his warm exhortations.
B. F. ROGERS.
JANUARY 18, 1912, P. 80
Brother B. F. Rogers writes from Rich Pond, Ky.: "We need a good physician at this place. Dr. Galloway owns a good farm here, and he has quit practicing medicine. Rich Pond is four miles from Woodburn. three and one-half miles from Rockfield, and eight miles from Bowling Green. So there is a fine territory here for a good doctor. We have a good congregation here."
Brother B. F. Rogers writes: " I preached at Old Union, in Warren County, Ky., on the first Lord's day in this month and had three additions to the church: Two o were baptized and one restored.--.Old Union is a mission point. We have no church there yet. We have a fourth Interest In the house and hope to establish a church of Christ there some day.
Report 20 OCTOBER 2, 1913, P. 949
Rich Pond, Ky., September 26.-Brother B.F. Rogers, who lives here, began our meeting here on Saturday night before the second Lord's day in September. Brother J. P. Ezell preached on Lord's day and, continued the meeting till I came on Wednesday. So far we have had five baptisms, and three have come from the Baptist Church to stand on the Bible only and to wear the name of Jesus to the exclusion of all other names. Brother W. H. Allen, of Highland Home, Ala., was with us yesterday and preached an excellent sermon. Brother Ezell will remain here over Lord's day, and I will go to Locust Grove for one day, and then to Gamaliel, Ky., for a meeting. The Lord bless and keep you. -M. L. Moore.
Report 21 NOVEMBER 6 1913, P.1072
Rich Pond, Ky., October 30.--On Wednesday. October 22.. a wedding party from Barren County, Ky., came down to Rich Pond in an automobile. The two who were united in marriage by me were Mr. Clarke Speck and Miss Sammie Duval, popular young people from the Beckton community.
--B. F. Rogers
Report 22 SEPTEMBER 29,1910, P. 1093
Brother B. F. Rogers, of Rich Pond, Ky., writes, under date of September 23: "We have just closed a two-weeks' meeting at this place. Brother C. E. W. Dorris, of Nashville, Tenn., did the preaching. We had a good meeting - good attendance, good interest, and good preaching. Brother Dorris is a good teacher, a close reasoner, and uses nothing but the gospel to induce persons to turn from sin to God. We had only four additions to the church-three baptized and one from the Baptists; but I am confident that the brethren were edified and will be more faithful, and others were instructed in the word of the Lord. The day meetings were spent in Bible lessons of one hour each day with great profit."
Report 23 OCTOBER 26, 1911, P. 1238 Kentucky.
Glasgow Junction, October 18.
- Our meeting near Rockfield
closed at the end of one week with two restored. Brother J. P. Ezell was
present at, a number of our services there and was a great blessing to the
meeting. Our dear brother, B. F. Rogers, who has been a valiant soldier
of the cross for many years, came often to the meetings and aided us
greatly in the work. I am now in a meeting at this place. Our audiences
are growing in number and interest daily. From here I go to Summer
- M. L. Moore
Report 24 BEN F. TAYLOR, HISTORY OF POTTER ORPHAN HOME
"Mr. and Mrs. Clint C. Potter are today quietly celebrating their golden wedding, having been married just fifty years ago today at the old Potter homestead, since destroyed by fire, on the Three Springs road. Mr. and Mrs. Potter were united in marriage by the late Rev. B. F. Rogers of Rich Pond.
Departed this life, September 15, 1838, little Fannie Price, a two-year-old daughter of Bro. Fayette, and Sister Nannie Price, members of the Rich Pond, Ky., congregation. She was a bright child, an only daughter, and it is the first great grief of these fond parents. But they grieve not as those who have no hope, for they know that little Fannie has gone to Jesus, and that they can go and see her by-and-by if. they are only faithful. Heaven now seems nearer and nearer to them than before, for they, have a little gir1 "watching and waiting" for them there. May the good Father be with them: in their grief and bless them with everlasting life. B.F. Rogers
Effie Myrtle Welch, the second daughter of. Brother Edward
and Sister Laura Welch of Barren County, Ky., went up to heaven on
December 21, 1904. She was nearly sixteen months old when she was taken il
of diphtheria, and in only four short days she was taken from her fond
parents' embrace. Effie was a bright, interesting child, and will never be
forgotten, by her parents, to whom heaven will seem nearer, since little
Effie is there. Her little feet had not become familiar with the paths of
sin, nor her heart Mstained with evil. She is safe in the arms of the dear
Savior for he loves little children now; as he did when he dwelt here,
when he said: "Suffer the little children to come unto me and forbid
them not: for of such is the kingdom of God."
Glasgow, KY. B.F. Rogers
Sue Frances Rogers Bettersworth, born Sept. 18, 1883, passed from this life on Jan. 5, 1980 in Colonial Manor Skilled Nursing Facility in Bowling Green, Ky. Her death removes one of the last remaining links in the early Restoration Movement in Warren County, Ky. Her parents were Benjamin Franklin Rogers and Mary Jordan Rogers. See -Biographical Sketches of Gospel Preachers, H. Leo Boles pp. 309-312 and Search for the Ancient Order, Vol. 3, Earl Irvin West, p. 263.)
Sister Bettersworth obeyed the gospel at the age of 13. She was the oldest living member of the Rich Pond Congregation established by her father in 1874. She was married to A.C. Bettersworth, a native of Barren County, Ky., at Rich Pond on April 26, 1905. He served many years as trustee of Potter Home and School. He was chairman of the Warren County School Board on two occasions and served as a deacon of the Rich Pond Church of Christ. He died Nov. 10, 1961. Survivors include two sons, four daughters, 14 grandchildren, 14 great-grandchildren, and a great host of friends.
Ed Van Hooser and Barclay Riley officiated at the memorial service, conducted at the Arch L. Heady-Johnson Chapel in Bowling Green. Burial was in Fairview Cemetery beside her husband. Her life was described in Proverbs 31:10-31, used as a text by Bro., Van Hooser in view of today's present world conditions. A fervent prayer was presented by Barclay Riley at the service and at the graveside. Singing was done by Potter Christian School Chorus. Songs presented by the chorus were: In the Garden, My God and I, Be With Me Lord, and Safe in the Arms of Jesus.
Sister Bettersworth was a lifetime reader of the GOSPEL ADVOCATE and often helped her father write many of his reports. Even though there was much heartache in her life, she managed to generate friendliness, joy, happiness, and peace to others. A fine Christian woman who truly placed. her trust in the Lord and who loved the Lord's church. Always willing to assist in any way she could to promote the cause of Christ, it can truly be said that her life was full of good works. Only eternity can measure in full the accomplishments of Brother and Sister Bettersworth. Many gospel preachers have benefited from their hospitality. I shall never forget the encouragement that she gave me in the study of Restoration Story in our area. May her family find strength and comfort in the promise of an inheritance reserved in heaven for the faithful in Christ Jesus. Expressions of sympathy may take the form of donations to Potter Children's Home and School. Her son-in-law, Paul Ward is Chairman of the Board of Trustees.
-J. A. Floyd, Jr. 1103 McElroy, Bowling Green, Ky. 42101.
GENEALOGY OF BENJAMIN
(Submitted by Irene Bettersworth Ward, October 2000)
Children: Frank Rogers, Madie Rogers, Sue Rogers, Clarence Rogers
First Grand Children: Ruby Galloway, Rogers Galloway, Frank Rogers Jr., Maurine Rogers, Evelyn Rogers, Jewell Rogers Bettersworth, Mary Louise (Bettersworth) Ashby, Arthur Cecil Bettersworth, Vernon J. Bettersworth, Mattie Sue (Bettersworth) Young, Irene Frances (Bettersworth), Ward Hazel (Bettersworth) Richardson
Great-Grand Children: Jay Bettersworth, Barbara J. Bettersworth, Charlotte Ashby, Joe Bettersworth, Ann Lee Bettersworth, John M. Young, Dan Young, Ben Young, Jack Richardson, Jill Richardson, Judith Sue Ward, Paula Frances Ward, Walter A. Ward, Nancy Irene Ward
Great, Great-Grand Children: John Bettersworth, Ben C. Ward, Elizabeth Ward, Mike Harris, Brent Harris, Kevin Harris, Jennifer Mattox, Jeffery Allan Smith, Nina Johnson, Michael Johnson, John Young Jr., Michael Young, Leigh Ward, Carri Bettersworth, Joby Bettersworth, Paul Bettersworth
Great, Great, Great-Grand Children: Justin Harris, Tyler Harris, Chelsea Harris, Devan Harris, Mallory Harris, Zachary Skiles Bettersworth, Jesse Ann Bettersworth, Catherine Skiles Gott, Campbell Bettersworth Gott, Daniel Johnson, Kyle Johnson, Bailea Augustina, Stone Bettersworth
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