STARR — The annual Old Starr Methodist Church Homecoming will be held Sunday, Oct. 3 at the church building located along Route 309, in the small town of Starr, just five miles southwest of Centreville. The annual homecoming welcomes past family members and friends of those who once attended the church until it closed in 1959, as the congregation dwindled to no longer be able to support keeping the church open.

Two services a year are held at the former Starr building, the annual homecoming, the first Sunday in Oct., and a candle-light Christmas Caroling service, held the first Sunday in December. Dolly Taylor, 93, of Starr, who grew-up in the church, is still instrumental is organizing for the yearly services at Old Starr. Her late grandfather, Henry Covington, served as pastor of that congregation in the early 1990s, as well as pastor of the two other area Methodist churches just north of Centreville, the Salem Methodist Church, and Burrisville Methodist Church. He presented sermons every Sunday, riding between the church building locations on horseback, before automobile travel came to the Eastern Shore.

Old Starr Church was the furthest ride for Pastor Covington, and he ended his weekly Sunday travels at that location.

The church building was built in the late 1850s, and opened in October 1860, before the Civil War. Other than maintenance of the building, little has changed inside. There is electricity, where, of course, there was no electricity back in 1860. Huge windows were put in the church building to take advantage of natural sunlight during worship services during afternoons. Oil lamps were originally used for cloudy days outside. There is a balcony inside the church building, but access to the balcony is very limited. It is reported that some of the original wall paper used to decorate in the balcony is still there.

The public is welcome to the church services, Oct. 3 and Dec. 6. Longtime retired Centreville and Kent Island United Methodist Music Director Nancy Cook is scheduled to lead the sing program Oct. 3, beginning at 2 p.m. The worship service message will begin at 3 p.m. A potluck dinner will be served in the social hall next door to the church building immediately following the worship service.

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