Beginning with a core group of six, Tuesday night preaching, and pot luck suppers, God blessed the Big Sandy area with Sit’em Down Cowboy Church. Wayne and Jackie Davis provided the venue – Davis Ranch Arena – and while it was slow at first, membership started to grow and grow and grow. After a year or so, the congregation moved to a building on South Tyler Street, and continued to grow. Another year and a second service was added.
Now Sit’em Down Cowboy Church is back where they started but with a few updates. Cedar walls, ceiling fans, heat and air conditioning, large kitchen, stage with great sound system, children’s area, pastor’s office, and big windows to watch the arena events.
Wednesday evenings at Sit’em Down are like any other church service…coffee and cupcakes, announcements of birthdays, anniversaries, and new grandbabies, meet and greet…with a few exceptions. The men wear cowboy hats and caps, and Johnny Cash, the resident ‘guard dog’ is roaming around hoping for a dropped snack. The music has a western flair, but traditional gospel can be heard, too, The Sit’em Down Cowboy Church Band is made up of Stephen Mills, Charlie Davis, Larry and Marie Black, and Music Team Leader Thomas Clements.
After Wednesday night service, the church leaders – Pastor Chad, Lay-Pastors Rickey Caughron and Raymond Shelton, and Elders Boo Buchheit and David Nutt – met with The Journal staff. While they’ve hosted many notable Christian musicians, Chad says, “We’re not about putting on a show, it’s about the Lord blessing this place.” Elder David Nutt agreed that Chad’s sermon tonight said it all. “It’s about bringing the unchurched people…having a place for everyone to feel comfortable and loving people where they are,” said Nutt. “If you’re worthy, you can come in here; and everyone is worthy because they’re children of God.” All agreed that while the name is ‘Cowboy Church,’ it’s not just for cowboys. The message is the same and everyone is welcome because it’s one church…God’s church.
Sunday morning, September 25th, the congregation is ready for the grand re-opening of Sit’em Down Cowboy Church. John Randolph, East Texas Christian singer, songwriter, and speaker provides the music. And beautiful music it is – praising God and all His Glory!
With everyone gathering behind him, Pastor Chad Lee cuts the long, red burlap GRAND OPENING ribbon provided by the Big Sandy Chamber of Commerce. Supporting Sit’em Down were members from two local churches: First United Methodist Church Pastor Dr. Jack Hetzel and his wife, Pat; First Christian Church Elders (and wives) Wayne and Jackie Davis, and Jim and Cathy Baird.
As he begins the sermon, you can tell that Chad isn’t your traditional pastor. Coming late in his life to the ministry, he has no formal seminary training, but God has touched his heart and spirit in a way no college class could. His sermons are still as fiery as when he started and his message is still the same…GOD IS THE ONLY WAY.
Sit’em Down is very active in community activities. Once again, they will have a toy and food drive, benefiting the Agape House. The drive begins November 27th and runs through December 11th. They will host the Big Sandy Ministerial Alliance Community-Wide Thanksgiving service on November 20th and be the starting point for the Christmas Walk on December 19th.
Sit’em Down Cowboy Church is located at Davis Ranch Arena, 721 Dial Road in Big Sandy. Sunday morning services are at 9 and 11; Wednesday nights at 7; men’s and women’s Bible study Monday evening at 7. Every 4th Saturday at 7am, they host a Men’s Breakfast. Come as you are and praise the Lord!