1930s Youth Group – Kathryn Jordan

From 1920 to 1929, we had a minister at church by the name of Reverend Ralph Hand. He was not an excellent speaker and really had no personality. My parents allowed me to sit in the car during the service and read a book – something that doesn’t happen today – but the sermon was boring and often went long over the hour that it was supposed to take. I think the Session finally asked him to find a different church and he left to take a church called Upper Path Valley Presbyterian Church in the Presbytery of Carlisle.

We were without a regular pastor but we heard a number of candidates preach and finally the congregation called Reverend Everett C. DeVelde in the spring of 1930. He had just finished his seminary studies at Princeton and was newly married. He and his wife, Rebecca, were both very much interested in working with the young people, especially the high school age and I fitted right in.

My mother and father did not go to the evening meetings which were called Christian Endeavor. My aunt Margie who was married to Dad’s brother was much more involved with the church than my parents. She attended the adult Christian Endeavor with her son Milton who went to the Youth Christian Endeavor meetings and my sister and I went with them.

Mrs. DeVelde took charge of the youth Christian Endeavor. Many of our meetings were held around a bonfire on the grounds of the manse. She had games for us to take part in. Many of them involved competition in reciting Bible verses. Others were written games.

Through the DeVeldes I attended a four day activity held at the Chestnut Level Presbyterian Church in Lancaster County. In the morning sessions, we studied and heard lectures but the afternoons were spent in sports.

About six or seven girls from our church attended. The church had a two story activity building on the grounds. Meals were prepared and served on the lower level and the girls slept dormitory fashion on the second floor. Boys attended the meetings too but I don’t remember where they slept – not in the building where we were.

We looked forward to going there every summer and did so for the four years that I was in high school.


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