This article was given to the History department and I wish
to share this with readers.
Oak Island United Methodist church, founded by Rev. John
Wesley DeVilbiss. Worship was being held in the old limestone sanctuary until
just recently. History books cite John as the first Protestant minister to
deliver a sermon in San Antonio. Organizing two other churches Travis Park and
Little Church of La Villita.
Robert Perryman, whose wife and mother-in-law are
descendants of John Wesley. Having a daily journal and essays about him were
offered at a family reunion in 1993.
It’s a close family were there are well over 100 descendants. Many still
worship here as do members of other families. Families who helped establish the
early church some are the Knights, Gayle’s, Ernsts, Kerr’s and Applewhites. Mr.
Keilman said his grandparents, Mr. and Mrs. Thomas Applewhite were the first
people married at Oak Island. Keilman has belonged to the church for as long as
he can remember.
Archie Knight, a descendant of the original Knight family,
was a licensed lay speaker from 1955-58. He led services when no minister was
available. He and his family are standing members where they continue to
worship at the church. Archie sits in the same place. His daughter ,son-in-law ,
grandkids sit in the pew behind him. His wife Barbara has sung in the choir for
as long as she has been a member to the little church and she still sings along
with other members (of which are living relatives). Joey, Willa Mae, Jimmy Boatwright’s wife was
related to Gayle’s have sang together
forever. Tom Forsberg related to the Applewhite is the choir director.