BCHFS Centennial Fund : Celebrating 100 Years of Faith, Sacrifice & Vision

BCHFS Centennial Fund : Celebrating 100 Years of Faith, Sacrifice & Vision2018-06-06T21:37:05+00:00

Introducing the BCHFS Centennial Fund

As BCHFS celebrates 100 years of faith, sacrifice and vision, we invite you to invest in our continuing ministry by making a transformational gift

Invest in Our Future with the “BCHFS Centennial Fund” This year, BCHFS is introducing the BCHFS Centennial Fund. This unique fund allows you to give directly toward BCHFS ministry growth. Gifts given to the Centennial Fund are not used for general operations, but are invested and multiplied to provide for future ministry expansion. BCHFS is prayerfully considering a number of exciting new ministry opportunities. As the Lord leads, we plan to expand our services to reach new segments of the population. But, we cannot do it without YOUR help.

We need transformational gifts to help us reach our funding goal of $5 million over the next three years. The BCHFS Centennial Fund promotion will run through December 31, 2020. Gifts can be given as a lump sum or as installments paid over the course of the promotion. Donors who participate in any of these giving levels will be permanently recognized in a beautiful Centennial Prayer Garden to be constructed on our Carmi campus.


  • Visionary – $1,000,000
    Rev. Wade East raised $1 Million in the 1950’s in order to modernize the Children’s Home.
  • Benefactor – $750,000
    IBSA matched C.M. Wasson’s $25,000 gift to construct a boy’s dormitory and an administration building on the Carmi Campus ($50,000 in 1919)
  • Guardian – $500,000
  • Ground Breaker – $250,000
    The contract amount for construction of the first two buildings in 1918 ($16,670 in 1918)
  • Provider – $100,000
    The amount raised by those in attendance at the Orphanage dedication ($6,700 in 1919)
  • Trailblazer – $64,000
    The bank note amount taken out by 20 families in 1920 to buy the first 40 acres of land ($3,000 in 1918)
  • Defender – $10,000
  • Healer – $1,000
100 Year BCHFS Historical Timeline

We invite you to learn more about this celebration by viewing our historical timeline of events in BCHFS’s last 100 years.

Baptist Children's Home and Family ServicesLeave your mark on our future as we embark on the next century of helping those in need.

If you would like to speak to a BCHFS representative about how you make a gift through the BCHFS Century Fund or the Anna Ruth Rhine Legacy Society, contact our office at (618) 382-4164 or email Ken Steward, BCHFS Communications Director.

A Ministry Born Out of Catastrophe

A Ministry Born Out of CatastropheWhen World War I ended in 1918, its effects were deeply felt throughout American society. Over 116,000 Americans lost their lives during the four years of this epic conflict. In addition, the Influenza Epidemic of 1918 swept across the globe, killing 20 million people worldwide. Families were decimated because of these two global catastrophes. Countless children were left parentless and homeless with no one to care for their needs.

It was clear that something needed to be done. In 1917, The Illinois Baptist, the official publication of the Illinois Baptist State Association (IBSA) published an article making it known that they favored an orphanage being built somewhere in Illinois and 40 acres of land would be needed to complete the project. Inspired by the words of James 1:27, several members of the First Baptist Church in Carmi began to develop a plan to secure the necessary acreage.

This Ford car was used to tour White County and procure people willing to help purchase the original 40 acres of land for the Home.
John W. Hall and Eben Renshaw, both deacons of the First Baptist Church in Carmi, along with Rev. D.F. Marlin, traveled all of White County raising funds and scouting for the ideal property. Twenty people risked their homes and farms to sign a $3,000 note securing 40 acres of property outside Carmi. The land was owned by John W. “Uncle Jack” Holderby. Uncle Jack added to God’s bounty by donating an additional 40 acres to the project.

At the IBSA Convention held in October 1917, members of the Carmi Orphanage Committee presented their proposal. After thanking the citizens of White County for their generous donations, the association officially approved the Committee’s recommendation, and plans to build an orphanage in Carmi began to take shape.

“One of my best memories is when I gave my life to the Lord. I’ll never forget that life-changing experience. God has been with me every day since then, good or bad, He is with me at all times…I loved being there (at the Home). It was the only real home I knew.”

~ Ida, Former BCH Resident

“Mr. Talley impacted my life the most by leading me to Christ.”

~ Steve Richard, Former BCH Resident

“Uncle Joe (Mathias) was just like a daddy to me. He and Aunt Celia were like our own flesh and blood. I have no regrets whatsoever. We truly had a wonderful life!”

~ Evelyn (Cress) Money, Resident 1920-1935

“Without BCH, my mess would’ve never become my message. I would’ve just remained a mess.”

~ Crystal Naney, former BCH Resident and current houseparent

“BCH has changed my life because it taught me what was important in life and it helped me receive Christ as my savior – and without it, I would not have been able to be with the family I have now!”

~ Jessica, former BCH Resident