A Brief History of Calvary Baptist Church
Calvary Baptist Church was established on October 30, 1924 with 22 charter members who began meeting in the Midway section of Lancaster. The church’s first pastor was Rev. H. J. Wood. Calvary has been led by 14 additional pastors throughout the years; our most recent pastor, Rev. Jimmy Fox came to Calvary in July, 2014.
The church has been in its present location at the corner of Wylie and Barron Streets since 1949 when building was completed and a dedication service was held. Renovations and remodeling have added space and beauty to the building while the members continued involvement in ministry.
The most recent renovation that Calvary undertook was not planned at all; the church members had to oversee measures to correct damage from a lightening strike to the steeple on July 22, 2005. A fire was detected in the sanctuary’s attic with smoke and fire damage to the sanctuary only. The members met in the fellowship hall until the renovations were completed at the end of November, 2005. A re-dedication service was held in the sanctuary at 2PM on December 11, 2005. The church also purchased a new organ to mark the occasion.
Calvary organized WMU in 1931 and the mission group leaders continue to lead the church members in support of mission projects and offerings. Senior Adult ministry was organized in 1978 for the purpose of fellowship, Bible study and special events. For a season in the 1980’s, Calvary Baptist had a clown ministry whose participants were older youth and young adults. Men’s ministry, youth and children ministries, music ministry, VBS and Sunday school have all served to bring members and guests in closer service to the LORD.
The summer of 2006, Calvary placed a special emphasis to reach out to the children of the community. In addition to a successful Vacation Bible School, Calvary sponsored a Good News – 5 Day Club with Child Evangelism Fellowship. Awana ministry was begun on Wednesday nights in August, 2006 for children ages preschool through 6th grade. In 2007 a class for 7th-8th grade was added. Awana clubbers continue to attend and learn a great number of Bible verses and lessons each week. Calvary will begin its 10th year of Awana in the fall of 2015.
In the summer of 2014, a committee began finalizing the plans for Calvary's 90th anniversary with a homecoming on October 26, 2014 with the theme: "90 Years Standing Strong with the Lord." Former pastor, Dr. Dan Vincent was the special guest speaker and former choir members were invited to participate in special music. Members and former members were recognized in the categories of oldest member, married at Calvary, baptized at Calvary. Former pastors who attended were Steve Bateman and Harold Owens and Dan Vincent.
Cavalry Baptist Church is not large in number but we hope that it can be said that we have a big heart for God and his work.Our future is as bright as the promises of God and we are pressing forward and eager to be a part of His Great Commission.
"Calvary Baptist is a small congregation that is working to move forward."
Note: Copies of detailed history prepared for the church’s 75th anniversary
celebration are available at the church office.