EATON — Arnold Baughman, a US Army veteran, of Farmersville, has been called to serve as a Bishop in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints leading the Eaton Ward congregation. This church, located at 220 Wayne Trace Rd., is one of 19 Latter-day Saint churches in the Greater Dayton area and serves 397 local members.
“At first, I felt overwhelmed, but the more I have gotten into it and prayed about it, I understand that this is where the Lord wants me,” shared Baughman.
A bishop is the leader of a local congregation, known as a ward, with duties similar to those of a pastor, priest or rabbi. In the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, this position is unpaid. A Bishop is expected to serve until he is released, usually 5-7 years.
Bishop Baughman has been married for 37 years to his wife, Theresa. Together they have raised four children, all graduating from Carlisle High School. Baughman was born in Richmond, Kentucky, moving to Franklin, in the early 1980s and then settling in Farmersville 5 years ago. Baughman was baptized into the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in 1987.
When asked what his goals are for the members in his area, he responded, “I will encourage unity; focusing on the Savior to overcome life’s challenges and trials that come our way.”
Bishop Baughman feels tremendous love and gratitude for his wife. “She was the turning point in my life,” he says, adding that it was she who first introduced him to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. After their marriage in 1978, Baughman was converted and baptized. He has been a member for over 29 years.
Also called to serve with the Bishop Baughman are two counselors, James Seals and Michael Bristow. A Bishop always serves with two other men to offer support and counsel. Together, these three men in the Eaton Bishopric will oversee the spiritual and social needs of their ward members.
Due to increasing numbers, a larger building is needed as the church expands in this area. Construction is currently underway and involves the addition of several classrooms, a larger chapel, and parking lot expansion. After the addition is completed, parts of the older building will be renovated. Upon completion this upcoming spring, the congregation will host an open house inviting members of the surrounding community to come and visit.
The Eaton Ward currently meets at 2:00 pm for sacrament services each Sunday. They are temporarily meeting at 3333 Backmeyer Rd., Richmond, IN 47374. Visitors are welcome to come and worship each week.