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As the fall of 1952 approached, the funds in Christ
Church Treasury began to dwindle. The members of the congregation, with others who were
interested in the Church, got together and served a turkey luncheon on Wednesday, December
10, 1952, to help the Church along with its program. The proceeds from this luncheon,
together with gifts of money from friends who wished to help Christ Church, amounted to
When the cold weather set in and it became necessary to have heat, the
congregation discovered that the gas heater did not give adequate heat for a church of
that size with such high ceilings, and something would have to be done about it. So the
Peoples Gas Company consented to take back the tank and all installments and give the
Church a refund. The gas heater was eventually sold and the money put into Christ Church
Mr. Fred R. Davies, who married Miss Louise Bultman (daughter of Mr.
and Mrs. John K. Bultman of Mars Bluff), hearing of the Church's unfortunate situation
offered a coal heater that he had stowed away, which was gratefully received and served
the purpose very well.
On Sunday, January 18, 1953, after the usual monthly service at Christ
Church, the congregation held its annual business meeting to present the yearly reports
and elect officers for the coming year. There being so few men in the Church, Thomas A.
Gregg was kept as Warden, Mr. Edw. P. Ashby as secretary, and Mrs. Constance Ashby Gregg
was elected treasurer. The Vestry was to consist of Mr. Francis Bacot Rogers, Mr. E. P.
Ashby and Mr. Thomas A. Gregg. It was decided that the pledge of $100.00 made to the
Porter Military Academy Development Fund be sent at once. That spring Christ Church lost a
most devoted and active member of its congregation, by the death of Miss Elizabeth Ashby
Gregg, more familiarly known as Miss Bessie A. Gregg, author of "A Sketch of Christ
Episcopal Church Florence County, South Carolina." She passed away April 21, 1953,
and was buried in Christ Church Cemetery.
Because of the fact that it was her grandfather, Dr.
Edward Porcher, who gave the land on which the Church was built, and he and his wife were
two of the chief promoters in the building of the Church, Miss Bessie was deeply concerned
in writing a sketch of Christ Church. Consequently, she spent many years in doing research
work and recalling the many well remembered talks with her grandmother, Mrs. Edward
Porcher. She succeeded in getting the desired information to make an interesting account
of the early building and growth of the Church.
It was sometime before her death that she conceived the idea of getting
a new Altar Cross, one much larger and more suitable for a Church of that size, as a
"Memorial to the Founders and Original Members of Christ Church". Naturally, she
turned to the descendants of those original members who would be most interested and
appreciative of her efforts. After writing and contacting many of them and getting
generous and willing responses to her calls, she collected almost enough to serve her
purpose, but illness and death overtook her and she did not live to see her desire
materialize. Shortly after her death other members of the congregation who had the same
interest at heart under took to carry her plans through and finished raising enough funds
to buy a beautiful Cross and have it engraved with the following inscription:
GIVEN 1953 TO THE GLORY OF GOD
AND IN MEMORY OF
THOSE WHO BUILT CHRIST CHURCH
On May 3, 1953, Christ Church lost another life-long
member, Mr. Ellwyn M. Rogers, son of Mr. and Mrs. Robert M. Rogers (and grandson of Mr.
and Mrs. Robert Rogers, two of the builders of the Church.) He was buried in the family
lot in Christ Church Cemetery.