Brian, Aaron, and Clara Henningsen grew up on a family farm in Atwood, Illinois. They would drive to Decatur every once in awhile, passing the Oakley Brick Church of the Brethren. Clara admired the beautiful building and had great appreciation for it, for it has been standing since 1867. But in December of 2015, high winds caused the roof to fall into the building, where heavy rains saturated the historical building.
This wasn’t the first time, either. A tornado ripped off its roof in 1982 as well, but the members worked together quickly to replace the roof. They even continued to meet in the basement for Sunday worship services until the building was repaired. However, the 2015 damage was much worse, causing the church to be completely rebuilt.
Fixing the church is important to all of its members and The Henningsens, who loved the church as well. It was a place to worship personally, but also a social gathering for its members. The trio quickly jumped in to help one of their favorite hometown buildings. Last December, they played two benefit concerts to raise money for the church construction. Originally, just one concert was scheduled, but sales turned out so well that they added a second day!
The remains of the church were demolished this past summer, and the congregation has plans underway for a brand new building. It will be a one-level structure made of metal and brick. With the help of The Henningsens, the town raised money to support construction. They are hopeful to finish building the church soon and return to their place of worship.
The Henningsens are a group on the rise in the country music industry. Brian Henningsen is the father of 10 children, two of which accompany him in the band. The three oldest sons, Paul, Wesley, and Andy, take care of the family farm in Illinois. Parents, Brian and Debbie, and the four youngest children split their time between their hometown of Atwood and their summer home near Nashville, Tennessee.
The group loves to help others when they can. They were also part of an event to support St. Jude:
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Learn more about how The Henningsens got their careers started by clicking below!