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Years of Firsts

The First Pastor

Just a few days later the first preacher arrived. Rev. Hendry D. Martin; a native of Stuart, Virginia and a graduate of Bluefield College, Georgetown (KY) College, and Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary; became the first pastor shortly after his graduation from Seminary. He had been in conversation with the Richmond-based Foreign Mission Board, SBC, about appointment as a missionary to Nigeria. The Board insisted that he have some ministerial experience before appointment. The Virginia Baptist Board of Missions and Education employed him to organize the new Springfield Baptist Church.

Rev. Martin arrived in Springfield in early March 1954. He conducted his first services on Sunday, March 7, 1954. The attendance was recorded as 38 in Sunday School, 54 in Morning Worship and 21 in evening Worship. The offerings totaled $105.25.

The First Baptism

The first baptism was held at Beulah Baptist Church, when Kay and Lynne Kendrick were baptized at the request of their parents soon after making their professions of faith. It was early spring and the water in the baptism was not heated. Rev. Martin nearly froze. After the church was organized, another baptism was held at Annandale Baptist Church, and the water was so hot that Rev. Martin’s skin began to peel.

The First Wedding

The first wedding in the church family was that of Hugh and Helen Clarke. They were married by Hugh Ragland in Grace Presbyterian Church on August 25, 1956.

The First Baby Born

The first baby born in the church family was Sharon Nelson, daughter of Chris and Mary Nelson. Sharon was born on May 11, 1951.

The First Musicians

Mrs. Earline Moffett served as pianist at the first public worship service of the new congregation on Sunday, February 28 1954. She also served as music director of the church. Mrs. Helen (Melton) Clarke began playing the piano on the second Sunday services were held in the Oriole house. Helen continued to play the piano, and later the organ, until her retirement in 2002, when she was named Organist Emeritus.

Not long after the services in the Oriole house began, Charles (Charlie) Howard was enlisted by Earline Moffett to replace her as music director. Charlie led an expanded music ministry for over twenty years. (Earline continued to work with the youth choir.)

The First Church Bulletin

The first Church bulletin was issued on March 14, 1954

The First Vacation Bible School (VBS)

The first Vacation Bible School was held in the summer of 1954.

The First Newsletter

The first newsletter was published in July of 1958.     top



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