Southern View Chapel has faithfully proclaimed the Gospel of Jesus Christ to the Springfield, Illinois, community since its inception in the spring of 1938. During the first 11 years, there was no stable pastoral ministry, but that changed in the Fall of 1949 when a young pastor from Peoria by the name of Edward Hellyer arrived. Pastor Hellyer served the church as Senior Pastor until his semi-retirement in 1980, when he became the Visitation Pastor. Even after full retirement and a 90th birthday party, Pastor Hellyer continued leading our monthly communion service until 2006.
In 1980, Gary E. Gilley became the Senior Pastor, after serving the church as Assistant Pastor since 1975. Over the course of his pastoral ministry the church experienced steady numerical growth. As a result, it became increasingly apparent that new facilities were necessary.
After more than a decade of prayer and faithful giving, SVC moved to its current church building in 2003. This facility includes an auditorium that will seat approximately 700, is about 2 miles south of the old location, and sits on a beautiful 10-acre parcel of land on the edge of the city limits of Springfield. In addition to Pastor Gilley, the current pastoral staff includes Associate Pastor Brian Gilley, Director of the Springfield Center for Biblical Counseling Michael Wickens and Director of Youth and Media Edwin Tevez.
Two signs hung in the front of the “old chapel” one on either side which read, “Prayer Changes Things” and “Jesus Never Fails”. May we, as a present and future church, never forget these truths.