|CBC’s first service held in new sanctuary - photo from church website|
|Cloverdale Baptist Church being dismantled|
Well, not truly there, but rather in the structure that has been disassembled to make way for the new building and its required parking. In recent months, having intermittent glimpses of the vanishing older facility, my nostalgic memories gave way to thoughtful thanksgiving for all that happened in 85 years.
Cloverdale Baptist Church was a dream that became realized. It began simply enough, as a home Bible study for interested people whose increasing numbers birthed the notion of starting a Bible-believing church with a building in Cloverdale. These pioneers were convinced this was God's idea which he invested into their willing hearts. First, in 1929 several families rented the Liberal Hall in Cloverdale to hold worship services led by area pastors. The Home Missions Committee of an association known as Regular Baptists had been considering starting a church work in the area, and suggested that this fledgling fellowship affiliate with them. The group was formally recognized as a Baptist work on March 10, 1931.
Church leaders and members rose to the challenge with an eager desire to reach their community, so they visited homes and made contacts and extended invitations to attend and over a period of time, people responded to warmth and friendship, believed the good news that was preached, were baptized as new believers and became active members. Church membership grew throughout the 1940's so one acre of land was purchased at 17400-60th Avenue, where the congregation built a new facility and dedicated it to the Lord on October 11, 1962. That building was a catalyst to further growth which included various ministries for special groups, missionaries commissioned overseas, and daughtering other churches.
|Cloverdale Baptist Church, 1981-2015|
A full auditorium and visionary people birthed two initiatives. First, in 1995 the launch of a congregation in Murrayville comprised of 50 adults plus their children who volunteered to go with a pastor and $100,000 to begin a brand new work.
|Southridge Fellowship Baptist|
|Cloverdale Baptist Church 2015|
Some plans belong to God and some are set aside. The latter one was not realized. I concluded my service in 2001. In recent years, new leadership opted to sell seven acres to a developer, and to meet the demands of today with the construction of this new facility. Many new memories will be made in the years to come, yet for many of us, it is appropriate to be thankful for lives that were changed and challenged, and relationships that were deepened and healed because of God's presence and the faithfulness of his people in all of those earlier years.