After a series of short-term ministers and in the midst of the Great Depression, People's Church once again was on the verge of disappearing. In June 1934, however, the members decided to engage a minister for one more year. They chose Edwin C. Palmer, who revitalized the church, sometimes at considerable hardship to himself and his family, and remained there until his death in 1956. He firmly believed in investing in people and was well-known for his service to the community as well as for his "cheerful leadership" of the congregation.
Park and Lovell Site
In 1968, the structure at Park and Lovell and the six-year-old church school at the rear were sold to the Kalamazoo Telephone Answering Service Company. The church was razed and replaced by a parking lot, but the school continues to be used by the company as its headquarters.
Third Church Building
While the new People's Church was under construction on 10th Street in Oshtemo, the congregation met in rented space in the West Main School. The building was finished in 1969, complete with the organ from the original church. In 1981, during the celebration of the congregation's 126th year in Kalamazoo, the organ was the second oldest in Kalamazoo, the oldest being an 1810 organ at Nazareth College. The tornado of May 1980, which drove planks through the roof of the new church, chose to spare the old organ. The organ was built by a Detroit company, Farrand and Votey, shortly after they constructed the organ destined for the Chicago World's Fair.
Final Words from Roger Greeley
Roger Greeley, probably the most colorful and outspoken minister of People's Church, summed up the church's philosophy this way, "You have the right to determine for yourself whether you shall or shall not believe...We don't all dress alike, we don't all look alike, why should we all think alike?"