The Quail Springs Church of Christ
How a church of Christ
became a so-called
Progressive Church of Christ
"My people have committed two evils:
they have forsaken me,
the spring of living waters,
and cut them out cisterns,
that can hold no water"
(Jeremiah 2:13 WEB).
Historical items are linked to the
When established in 1953 the congregation was called The Village Church of Christ. "The Village" is a city in the northwestern metropolitan area of Oklahoma City.
In 1979 when a new building was constructed near the Quail Springs Mall in northwest Oklahoma City, the name was changed to The Quail Springs Church of Christ. The 70,000-square-foot building on 20 acres had an auditorium with a seating capacity of 1800.
Shortly before the building was sold for 4.7 million dollars to an adjacent Baptist church in February of 2016, the name was changed to "The Springs Church of Christ." When they vacated the building on March 6, 2016 they started meeting temporarily in the gymnasium of The Northside Christian Church.
In June of 2017 part of the funds from the sale of the Quail Springs building was used to purchase a different building at 21477 N. Western Avenue, Edmond, Oklahoma.
Originally, the congregation assembled as a church of Christ. Article IV of their "Articles of Incorporation" drawn up in 1961 states: "The purpose or purposes for which the corporation is formed are: To encourage and build up churches that will in all their work, worship, and teaching, use and employ only that which is authorized and required in the New Testament, rejecting all creeds, innovations and devices of man, such as the use of mechanical instruments of music in connection with the worship and of any societies other than the Church of Christ in carrying out the work of God, or the teaching of any unscriptural or speculative theories on unfulfilled prophecies such as the personal return and reign of Christ on earth, known as the millennium theory, and to see that in the event of a schism within this congregation as a result of departure from such purposes all right and title to any and all such physical assets of the congregation shall at such time vest in the group maintaining the purposes set forth herein, whether such group be in the majority or in the minority." Article IV continued in force when the congregation moved to the Quail Springs building.
Those who established the congregation were concerned that in time, some in the congregation - maybe even a majority - might depart from these stated purposes. Article IV was intended to prevent such people from gaining control of the building, even if they were in the majority.
In violation of this Article, however, on January 27, 2008, after worshipping without the use of instrumental music for 55 years, the congregation, in addition to their service without instruments, added a service with instrumental music. Eventually the singing-only service was dropped.
This change of identity resulted from gradual developments during many years. The introduction of instrumental music was not the only departure from the original purposes defined in Article IV. This history documents that process of change.
Many facts were gleaned from historical surveys in the published doctoral
theses of Mark Henderson and Wyatt Fenno referenced below. Information
was also obtained from newspaper articles and other sources on
the Internet as well as from personal emails.
Henderson, Robert Mark, "Leadership and the life of God: distribution of ministerial gifts and leadership practices at the Quail Springs Church of Christ" (2004), thesis presented to ACU.
Fenno, Wyatt E., "Living Waters: An Invitation to Contemplative Spirituality for the Quail Springs Church of Christ" (2005), thesis presented to ACU.
Although every attempt was made to ensure that this history is reliable, sources are sometimes incorrect or contradictory, and memories are not always exact. After being online for several years, however, no objections were received from anyone with regard to the accuracy of this account.
This website was compiled by Roy Davison who started serving as an evangelist in the Dutch-speaking part of Europe in 1963 (Flanders and Holland) and continued preaching there for more than fifty years. In 1916 he was publishing 25 websites in 7 languages that had a total of 1.6 million visits per year. The most active site is The Old Paths Archive. His own writings are here.