Gospel Baptist Church 1939-2021, Celebrating 82 years of God’s Blessings

Gospel Baptist Church 1939-2021, Celebrating 82 years of God’s Blessings

 

Gospel Baptist Church was formed on Feb. 18, 1939 as a group of men and women met in the home of S.E. Coltrane.  Fair View Baptist was chosen as the name and Rev. A. L. Riddle was called as the first pastor. The location was 300 Pisgah Church Road Greensboro, (the current location of the AAA Auto Center and Bojangles). 

 

There were thirteen original charter members, one still attends when she is able, Joan Snyder.  She was 8 years old when the church began and she turned 90 earlier this year. We praise God for her faithfulness to this local church through the years as she has served in many capacities.

 

The name of the church was later changed to Gospel Baptist Church. From 1939 until 1983, the congregation was led by nine pastors.  The current senior-pastor, Paul Luttrell, followed God’s leading and came to Gospel Baptist Church in August of 1983 as interim pastor and then as senior pastor in January 1984.  Pastor Paul continues to faithfully, clearly, and consistently preach the Word of God. He has been a loving shepherd to the flock, leading our congregation for 37 years.  

 

Pastor Paul’s wife, Karen has graciously served along-side her husband, as a volunteer in many capacities such as Event Planning, Women’s, Children’s and Super Seniors Ministries Director. Later she was added to the staff as the pastor’s secretary, where she continues to serve. 

After serving as a volunteer youth pastor for seven years, Harlie Miller was moved to part-time assistant pastor in 1994 and has remained as a teaching-pastor, leading the auditorium class, preaching, and contributing in other ways, all while earning his doctorate degree and teaching at Piedmont University and the Greensboro Bible Institute.  

Our average, Sunday morning attendance grew from about 50 in 1983 to 233 in 2004.  It was then, that we began to pray and seek the Lord's will about expansion.  The Lord answered our prayers and miraculously provided a buyer for our property on Pisgah Church Road.  He led us to our present location on North Church Street.  It is a testimony to the Lord's faithfulness that all of the financial needs have been met and that the facility was completed in the time frame required for us to exit the old building (less than a year).  We held our first service in this location in September of 2005 with an attendance of 440.  Our 2019 pre-COVID average attendance was 375.

Our Gospel Afterschool Program (G.A.P.) began in August 2007, led by Kristy Hazelwood. Pam Anderson has been her dedicated assistant since 2007.  Both of these ladies continue to teach, love and care for all the children in G.A.P. The program was extended to include the G.A.P. summer ministry in 2008.  This ministry has proved to be a blessing to the families of this community and has served as an extension of our GBC goals with many children putting their trust in Christ and growing in their faith.

Gregg Smith was added as the pastoral assistant in 2011 and now serves as “Director of Operations” and does a tremendous job.  We especially appreciate his hard work with all of the technology during COVID-19. 

Jason Wilson was added as our full time youth/worship pastor in April 2016.  As part of the pastoral staff changes that followed Pastor Paul's stroke, Jason moved to the position of Lead Pastor this year. We appreciate Pastor Jason’s servant heart, musical knowledge, and leadership abilities. 

Our staff also includes six part time positions. In April of 2016, Kristy Hazelwood became our part time Children’s Ministry Director and does a great job teaching, loving the children, organizing and directing this ministry. 

 

JT Mahaffey is the part-time Choir Director who has served during COVID in other musical capacities.  We appreciate his talent and faithfulness.  

We are thankful for Denya Haymore, who was originally added to our staff in 2019 to oversee Events and Women's Ministry.  Last year she moved to Outreach and Women’s Ministry Director. We are blessed by her joy and passion in serving the Lord, teaching God’s Word as she reaches children and adults with the gospel!

Tracy Brown became our part time Nursery Director in 2019 and enjoys loving on the little ones, keeping the nursery organized, safe, and clean, all while balancing the demand for scheduling workers.

 We are thankful for our two interns serving our congregation.  Kali Hazelwood serves in the Children’s Ministry, assisting in various ways, including directing VBS.  Kathleen Mahaffey assists with the Music and Youth Ministry. We are grateful for these young ladies and the educational background and experience they bring to their roles.

Other part-time staff includes Cindy Hilton and Becka Thompson who work hard to keep the church facilities clean and sanitized.  They do a great job! Their work is behind the scenes, but we all benefit in the way they keep the inside of the church looking good!

We are very thankful for all of our staff and the staff is very thankful for a supportive and encouraging church family. We praise the Lord for bringing us all together at this time and we look to the future with much anticipation and excitement.

During COVID, we have been in awe of God’s provision, allowing us to pay off our facility in September of last year, just as we had prayed.  Our missions program has continued to grow during a very difficult year as well.  We continue to give over 25% of our budget to support more than sixty local, national, and foreign missionaries and mission programs.  Also during COVID, God blessed us with the highest general fund balance in our history, reaching over $208,000. To God be the glory! We praise HIM for HIS continued blessings upon our church through the years as we celebrate our Homecoming this month!