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Chapter 41. The Theatre Church

July 23, 2010

The Theatre Church

The church needed a temporary building while they waited for their new facilities to get finished. They had hoped to be in the new church by now, but as every pastor knows, delays often happen.

The new church was being built in Diggins, Missouri. Actually at one time there had been a store, a bank and enough buildings to have a modest little town in Diggins. When Highway 60, the big four lane, came through, it bypassed the businesses and pretty much everything shut down.

That didn’t stop Pastor Herion. He started building a new building right on the highway. The problem was, where to have church in the meantime? His old building was sold.

A few miles from Diggins is a somewhat larger community called Seymour. This little town sports a town square, a police department and old movie theater and even a McDonald’s.

It was summer time in Missouri and the heat and humidity forced the owner of the “Owen Theatre” to let his theater building sit empty. He used a Drive-In Theater during the hot months because his building in town didn’t have air conditioning.

Pastor Herion couldn’t find any available buildings to have church in. someone told him about the empty theater. That seemed like his only option, so he rented the building for the summer.

Owen Theatre was built in 1941. It was small with a center aisle and it only had a few chairs on each side.

Near where a platform would be, was a pool table and someone even had put some video games including Ms Pac Man.

The room was dark and musty. There weren’t very many electrical outlets, so extension cords were run everywhere.

A sheet of plywood was placed on top of the pool table and that served as a table to hold the sound equipment.

Sheets were placed over the video games to cover them, and large fans were brought in. they sounded like small airplane engines. One fan was placed near the front door and the other fan was placed near the back door. They were so loud that most of the time they were turned off for testimony service and preaching.

In spite of the less than perfect atmosphere, the saints rallied. They worshipped. They had good church there too. Some services still stick out in the congregation’s minds.

When some of the brothers got happy and wanted to run the aisle, there just wasn’t any room. So, they ran out the back door, turned right, ran down the alley to the street, turned right, and ran to the corner, again turning right. They ran past the Seymour Police Station turning into the Owen Theatre.

When they got feeling real good, they would make several laps.

During the service one night, a downpour of rain came, but that didn’t stop the men. They ran their laps out the back down and around the block. They came back in soaked. Undeterred, they ran it the 2nd time, then a 3rd time. The last time they were totally soaked. Not only did they feel good in the Holy Ghost, but they had also provided much amusement to the bored Police Department of Seymour

Today, situated out on Highway 60, is the Apostolic Church of Diggins. The building is absolutely beautiful! Bro. & Sis Bruce Herion have done an awesome work for the Lord, out in the middle of nowhere!

The Herions

This Too Is Home Missions!.

5 Comments leave one →
  1. July 24, 2010 12:05 am


  2. July 24, 2010 2:26 am

    You silently gathered the story and put the story together quite factually. Pretty good press coverage. LOL However, you might want to check the spelling of the pastor’s name. It’s Herion! 🙂

    • July 24, 2010 8:58 am

      Your husband was kind to take me there and he told me stories of your use of the building. I’m not sure how silent or secret that was. Thanks for a wonderful visit. Love you all.

  3. Marian June Davis permalink
    July 24, 2010 2:04 pm

    This is one of the most beautiful churches. Everything is first class
    Glad shethe correct spelling on. I wasn’t sure.

  4. October 7, 2010 11:27 am

    These are wonderful people!

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