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The church I grew up attending had no name. We called it "The Truth". We called the people who followed the church "professing" members. It had no buildings. The Sunday gatherings were called "meetings" and they were held in my grandpa's home. The Wednesday night bible studies were held in another member's home. About every 3 months a "special meeting" would be held at a local grange hall and featured a pot luck dinner and day long services. Once a year a large gathering called a "convention" would be held on a farm. My church had no preachers. There were pairs of traveling men and women (men traveled with men and women with women) who were called "workers". They lived in the homes of the members of the church and relied on the members for money to go to the next area. Workers never married. It was considered a great honor to have a worker live in your home or come to dinner at your house.

The Sunday meetings were different from most church services. Folding chairs would be set up in the living room of the host house, and people would sit on the chairs and on the existing furniture. There was no pulpit or leader. If no workers were present, one of the members of the church would be asked to lead the meeting. We would start by asking a member to select a song from the special hymn book called "Hymns Old and New". We would sing two songs, then would open the meeting for "sharing". Members of the church would then share what they had done that week, what they had read out of the bible and what they thought of it. Each person who was sharing would stand up and speak, then sit down. Sharing continued until no one else wanted to share. Then a couple more songs would be sung, again chosen by someone in the congregation. Then would come a sort of sermon, either by one of the workers, or by a member who had been prepared before. This person would speak about the bible, or about how to live better in "The Truth". Each week those who had professed, and promised to follow the church took communion, or "broke bread" as it was called, by tearing off a small piece from a slice of bread and drinking from a communal glass of grape juice that was passed around. This was done in complete silence.

There were some unofficial "rules" that you had to follow in order to be considered a "professing" person. Women dressed very plainly, drab colors, flat shoes, dresses only, no makeup. Men wore plain suits. Women weren't allowed to cut their hair, and the long hair was worn in a bun. Members of The Truth didn't own Television sets or go to movies. Most modern culture was considered "wordly" and not allowed.

The church apparently was founded in Ireland, just before the turn of the century by a man named William Irvine, a "Pilgrim" preacher for the Faith Mission who decided after reading Matthew 10, that all preachers should go forth as homeless, unpaid ministers. A few other of his contemporaries agreed with him. Irvine then challenged them to join him in going forth without salary and without a home. It was decided that regular meetings should be held in homes, rather than churches, taking literally: "God dwells not in temples made with hands" Acts 7:48, 17:24.

The church called "The Truth" still is active today. It still meets in the homes of "professing people". The Workers still travel from home to home. Very seldom is it listed in church directories. Members are recruited only at the quarterly special meetings, and membership is generally small. I no longer attend.

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