“As Strong as Faith and Race, It Is Place That Defines Our Sense of Identity,” is the title of a Sept. 18, 2011 article in The Guardian written by Madeleine Bunting.

She writes, “...it has become all too easy to belittle or overlook the geographical identities that motivate us.”

Yet a sense of place drives people to revisit childhood hometowns and favorite haunts.

The popularity of high school reunions is an evidence of how “place” drives human behavior. If individually faith or race or place strengthen one’s sense of identity, then a combination of faith and place will have an even deeper effect.

It is the goal of the New Avon Salem Sunday School Picnic to remember a special church that no longer exists and to carry people back to times when the church as a place helped define their faith.

Those who feel a connection to the former church and current cemetery are invited to celebrate July 29 starting at 11 a.m. at the former church site on Hwy 68. A potluck lunch will follow at the Wabasso Community Center.

The church was organized May 18, 1896.

The last service was held June 23, 2002.

The church building was torn down in July 2006.

New Avon Salem Cemetery was established prior to the 1896 organization of the New Avon Salem Evangelical Church, known as the church on the hill. The cemetery continues to operate as a non-profit serving the local community.

For more information about this event, contact Dennis Ingle via e-mail at ingle.dennis@gmail.com.