Marker Recognizes Chapel’s Legacy

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(from left) Retired church elder David Hertzler, State Reps. Bobby Outten & Dave Wilson, and State Sen. Gary Simpson.
(from left) Retired church elder David Hertzler, State Reps. Bobby Outten & Dave Wilson, and State Sen. Gary Simpson.

Staff Report

A new historical marker recognizes more than two centuries of enduring faith at a house of worship southeast of Felton. The marker, the 120th to be erected in Kent County, commemorates the legacy of the Laws Chapel site, at the intersection Carpenter Bridge Road and Canterbury Road.

The first church to be built at the location, a Methodist Episcopal chapel, was established on land donated by Joshua Laws in 1802. A new church was constructed in 1856. It fell into disuse in the early 20th Century, eventually being sold to the Mennonites in 1953, who began services later the same year. The venue currently hosts Laws Mennonite Church.

Arsonists set fire to the building on December 2, 2014 – one of three Felton-area churches targeted that night. The facility was repaired and renovated, with a dedication held December 6 the following year. “It’s amazing what has been done here and what can be accomplished when everyone is working together,” said State Rep. Bobby Outten, R-Harrington, speaking at the unveiling of the historical marker on the evening of September 14th.

State Rep. Dave Wilson, R-Cedar Creek Hundred, said the chapel had been blessed as a place of enduring faith and hope. “May this marker be a reminder of the journey Laws Chapel has traveled since 1802 and as … this congregation moves forward, a reminder that through God all things are possible,” he said.

State Sen. Gary Simpson, R-Milford, and the late Rep. Jack Peterman, R-Milford, split the $2,175 cost of the marker using their Community Transportation Fund allotments. Sen. Simpson said he was “honored to be part of the celebration” and noted the chapel’s long tenure and bright future.

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