Adult Classes

 
 

Wesley Bible Class

     Until recently, Trinity’s Ladies Bible Class and the Wesleymen’s Bible Class were institutions in Smithfield. The Ladies Bible Class met on the first floor of the church across from the church office. The Wesleymen met in the lower floor in a large room with theatre style seating. There are photographs of this class dating back to the early 20th century with more than 50 men from all walks of life. The Wesleymen especially were known for their rousing music. A favorite story that illustrates just how important the Wesleymen’s Bible Class was to Smithfield on Sunday mornings in the early 1900s holds that at the behest of Joe Luter, Sr., Ede Adelstein, a jeweler who lived on Main Street and who was possibly the only Jewish resident of Smithfield, attended this Methodist Sunday school class!
 
     Until the early 1980s, there were two ladies’ classes – the Susannah Wesley class which was for more senior ladies which met in a room off the old social hall and the Trinity class, for younger ladies, which met in the Chapel. Prior to the renovation of the sanctuary beginning in 1982, the two classes combined to form the Ladies Bible Class. Ginny Jacquette, who volunteered to serve as the first teacher if the two classes would merge, recalls that the former members of the Susannah Wesley class sat on the right side of the chapel during class and the former members of the Trinity class sat on the left. Soon, however, the two groups meshed into one strong class.
 
     Both classes were noted for their dedication to this church. However, as life changed and more members elected to attend the couples classes, the separate Ladies and Wesleymen classes joined into one class.
 
     Frank Hall recalls “I was just 16 or 17 when I joined the Men’s Bible Class at Trinity. It was a lecture type class which I still prefer today. My brothers Earl and Cleve were members too. The teacher was Mr. George Mumford who was a banker, a pillar of the community and just a wonderful person and teacher. The class often had over 100 members attending on any given Sunday. We had our own piano and piano players, most notably Ann Cox, Jimmy Manning and Jamie Heptinstall. Later, Sam Sawyer and James Heptinstall were the primary teachers.”
 
     Frank also recalls that attendance was important to the class. “Walter Shearin (who lived just across S. Mason Street) collected, I think, a 50 year pin for perfect attendance. One Sunday the church was snowed out but he got dressed, went over to the empty classroom, and insisted that he be counted as present so as not to interfere with his perfect attendance.”
 
     Our adult classes, all open to anyone, any age, married or single, use various resources of their choosing to elicit discussion and interaction