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New Beginnings: A Photo Essay by Jack Zellweger ’17

New Beginnings Ministries — an evangelical church in Warsaw, Ohio, 23 miles from Kenyon — hosts several weekly services where community members raise their hands in worship with deep reverence for their Christian god. Bill Dunfee, the pastor at New Beginnings, believes himself to have a clear sense of right and wrong, and where Dunfee goes, members of his congregation follow. Several years ago, Dunfee and several other members of the church vowed to oppose “sinful” behavior in the area. They promised to “shut down” The Foxhole, a strip club about 20 minutes from Gambier, and to protest a Columbus Planned Parenthood clinic by confronting individuals who walk inside the establishment.

These black and white images represent a snapshot of life as a member of New Beginnings.

The Church’s Preacher, Bill Dunfee, plays christian music and praises god while church members offer prayers during a Sunday worship service at New Beginnings in Warsaw, Ohio.

New Beginnings Pastor Bill Dunfee preaches at New Beginnings Church during their Thursday evening service. Dunfee’s services include messages on leading a life according to the bible—always attending church, and the state of the country, and where it’s headed. Here, he says “Do we want to put our faith in Donald Trump? A man that sways to easily in the wind?” “No!” replies the audience. “Who do we put our faith in?” “God” responds the audience.

1 Comment

  1. OrangeCarDriver Reply

    “their Christian god.”

    This is as close to a elitist, other-ing (to use a Kenyon phrase), anthropological dissection of our uncouth rural community as it gets. A questioning of the church’s perspectives (admittedly, at times, a bit odd) , partnered with appropriate responses from leaders, would have fit the mold for quality examination. If we swapped natives of South America or refugees in Europe this piece would be the subject of untold calumny.

    Oh, by the by, even the AP attempts to show respect to religions by capitalizing deities. Editors are showing some grammatical bias here and they should know it does matter.

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