Methodists and W.Va.
SOUTH CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- A Sesquicentennial Speakers Bureau program will be presented at a special program at 11 a.m. July 21 at First Methodist Church, 905 Glendale Ave., South Charleston. No sermon will be delivered that morning but guest speaker Dr. Matt Foulds, Shepherd University history professor, will present a talk titled "Methodists and West Virginia Statehood."
Foulds maintains that western Virginians felt relegated to the fringe of the state's political structure, which was dominated by eastern Virginia's slaveholding oligarchy. Feeling powerless to seek reforms through a political system that had failed them, westerners turned to the traveling ministers of the Methodist Episcopal Church to voice their discontent.
Foulds' upcoming book, tentatively titled "Enemies of the State," analyzes how Methodist ministers used their influence to become grass-roots political leaders during the secession crisis and the formation of the state of West Virginia. When many of western Virginia's traditional political leaders cast their lot with the Confederacy, Foulds says Methodist ministers stepped into the breach and provided leadership and championed the statehood movement.
The presentation is free and the public is invited to attend. For more information, call 304-744-3211.
HUNTINGTON, W.Va. -- Renaissance Art Gallery is taking applications for volunteers to work with artists at the gallery. Each volunteer will receive a free one-hour class for each afternoon worked. Volunteers may select gallery hours from noon to 4 p.m. Friday and Saturday and 1 to 4 p.m. Sunday.