Old Baptist church sees changes

Published 8:52 am Friday, October 2, 2015


First Baptist Church of Poplarville has a long and interesting history since its inception in 1881 when it opened its doors on Strahan Street as Poplarville Baptist Church, according to Melanie Davis, the church’s director of children’s ministries and administrator.

Throughout the church’s history, Davis said there have been 26 different pastors, 22 of which were full time.  The first four pastors at

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the church were traveling ministers who rotated churches.

On Jan. 26, 1930, the original church, located on Strahan Street, burned down. Until the new church opened on Sep. 13, 1931, where it currently stands on South Main Street, the congregation met in the courthouse, Davis said.  In 1938, the debt for the building was paid off. The elevator was installed in 1948 and it is still in use, she said.

In 1955, the education wing where Sunday school is held was built. The education wing also serves as a place to engage in missionary activities where they teach the children to be involved in simple missions, state missions and foreign missions, Davis said.

In 1983 they made numerous additions including an office suite, the family life center, a kitchen and additional education space, she said.

Davis said the sanctuary underwent major renovations in 1994. Due to the renovations, the congregation met in the family life center.

In 2003, renovations to the education wing were made. They purchased the old Baker Maid building who moved his business to New Orleans in 2005, Davis said. Now it houses a large kitchen and dining area, worship area, gymnasium and game room area.

Currently the church is without a pastor, as the last pastor left in June to be closer to family.

“We’re steadily moving forward. We have an interim pastor, Daniel Caldwell. And we formed a search committee for a new one,” Davis said.

Davis mentioned how the church is doing a good job moving forward and that they have recently come up with a new mission statement:

“Our church exists to connect with God, connect with others, and connect others with God while being devoted followers of Christ.”