HISTORY OF CENTRAL BAPTIST CHURCH
KIRBYVILE, TEXAS

On January 11, 1953 Central Baptist Church of Kirbyville, Texas had its beginning. Charter membership was held open for one month.  there were 72 charter members recorded.  Immediately upon organization the church voted to affiliate with the Sabine Valley Association, the Baptist General Convention of Texas, and the Southern Baptist Convention.  The church meet in the Community House in Kirbyville until land was purchased and a building constructed.

Bro. Benton Sherrod (1953-1956) was called as the first pastor.  Under his leadership the church purchased 10 acres of land located on Highway 96 across from the Jasper Newton Electric Cooperative  On April 18, 1954 the first services were conducted in the new building.  A strong doctrinal, missionary, and stewardship program was conducted under his leadership.  In 1955 a parsonage was built.

Bro Wayne Flory (1956-1961) was called as pastor in May of 1956.  Under his leadership there developed a need for more space for worship and educational activities.  It was decided to begin a new building campaign.  A new building for worship was constructed and the old building was converted into educational space.  The new facilities were dedicated on January 1, 1961.

Bro Orel Speed (1962-1965) the next pastor, launched an enlargement of all the ministry organizations.  The community had no kindergartens at that time so in September, 1962 a kindergarten for 5 year olds was started.  This outreach ministry was provided for the next three years.

Bro Percy Bailey (1965-1980) led Central to make many improvements to the buildings and church grounds.  At the Easter Sunday service in April 1971 the note was burned for the sanctuary.  In 1974 construction began for more educational space.  A fellowship hall was added.  In 1977 the north wing was completed.

Bro Wayne Franklin became the first full time Youth and Education Minister while Bro Bailey was pastor.  Having this additional staff member greatly contributed to growth in church membership and ministry.

Bro Larry Lindsey (1980-1985) as pastor, was instrumental in a survey of the entire Kirbyville community being accomplished.  Also he led in taking an internal survey of the congregation of Central.  He lead God’s people at Central to engaged themselves in a deeper more intense study of the Bible.

Bro Larry Tucker (1985-1988) during his tenure as pastor, led in the development of plans for the Christian Life Center.  Also during this time frame a Bible Study class was started at Avalon on Sunday mornings.  Mission work began in Superior, Wisconsin in which teams were sent to help build the church facilities, as well as hold Vacation Bible School and present youth led Christian concerts.

Bro Jimmy Burks (1988-1992) led in again assessing the community’s spiritual needs and evaluating how Central could best reach out to these needs.  The church offices were remodeled during these years, which resulted in a new pastor’s study, secretaries office, music directors office, choir and conference room.  This remodeling created more space for the library, record keeping, and storage.  Central in conjunction with 12 other churches in the area became charter members of the Kirbyville Christian Outreach ministry.  The Christian Life Center was completed debt free.  This added Sunday school classrooms, a parlor, kitchen fellowship/dining area, gymnasium, and game room to the ministry facilities.

Bro Larry Killian (1988-1990) was the full time minister of music and youth.  He helped expand the music opportunities for adults, youth, children and preschoolers through the various choir experiences.

Bro Larry Lindsey (1993-1995) returned to serve as pastor.  He guided Central through the building of a new education building, which met the needs for ministry to babies, children and young adults.  There was also renovation to the sanctuary.

Bro Jon McClain (1994-2001) was on staff as a full time minister of youth.  He, along with his wife Rhonda, developed an active youth ministry through Bible study, mission trips, retreats, and camps.

Bro David Sevar (1997-1998) served as associate pastor, responsible for outreach ministry.

Bro Abe Ogea (1996-2004) as pastor had a real heart for people.  He led the congregation reach out and minister to entire Kirbyville community and help bring a closer fellowship and cooperation among the churches.

Louis (1990-2003) and Dorthy St. Aubin (1991-present) served as custodians.  They have served diligently in maintaining the appealing appearance of all the church facilities.

Bro Blaine Miller (2002-2005) was minister to students, as such,  he led Wednesday worship and Bible study.  He initiated a visitation of students at school during lunch.  He worked with coaches to develop the Fellowship of Christian Athletes breakfasts at Elijah’s restaurant.  He helped expand cooperation and ministry support to students between local churches.  God wonderfully blessed our student ministry numerically and spiritually during this time of service.

Delena Picket (2002-2009) led the ministry to children during these years.  She began an after school ministry on Wednesdays which involved Bible study and recreational  activities.  The children’s department , bed babies through 6th grade, flourished during her time of leadership.

More to come.