Friendly Street Church of God had its earliest beginnings in the home of Mrs. Mahala Smith who came to Eugene in 1906. Her home was located at 937 West 5th Avenue and she opened it for the first public service of the Church of God early that year. Services were conducted by U.G. Clark and others of the same faith.
On Christmas day 1906, Mrs. Smith was miraculously healed of cancer in answer to prayer. This led many earnest seekers of the truth to come to her and inquire about her beliefs. They were invited to services in her home. From that humble beginning, the congregation soon grew too large for the Smith home and was moved to the larger home of Mr. and Mrs. Layton. The congregation remained there until the first unit of the structure at 3rd and Monroe Street was completed in 1908.
The new structure was built on freewill offerings of material and labor. Several changes and additions were made in that building over the years as the church continued to grow under that pastorate of Reverends Clark, John Green, John Gillespie, Mamie Bisconer, C.K. Chapman, Harrison Smith and Gerald Roush.
In 1948, Dr. Wilma and Clarence Perry came to pastor the church at 3rd and Monroe. Under their leadership the church grew too large for that building. With a great deal of prayer and consideration, the congregation voted to build a new church building. A study of all areas of the city was made and it was determined that the present location at 23rd and Friendly had the greatest potential for residential growth. No other church was, at that time, located in the area. Therefore, it was felt the possibility for service to the community would be greatest here. During the building campaign, Glenn McCullough served as chairman of the building committee. Hobart Young was chairman of the Board of Trustees. In 1953, with leadership of the Perrys, we moved into the present building.
In 1953 Dr. Perry resigned to become a professor at Warner Pacific College and the church called Joe Crane to the pastorate. Reverend Crane was followed in 1959 by Reverend Ray Tuttle. Dr. David New came in 1972 and Mike Mugford came in 1989 and continues today.
We continue to maintain an attitude of service to our community. The Church of God, where salvation makes you a member, is open to everyone. In all the years since its founding, the church’s foundation has continued to be Jesus Christ.