Church History

08 Directory Cover

Our History and Heritage
On June 4, 1893, there was a meeting, held at Mount Bethel Methodist Church in Spartanburg County, S.C., for the purpose of organizing a Baptist Church. After satisfying the council that their action had been prompted by pure motives, these organized themselves into a Baptist Church. The Church Covenant and Articles of Faith as set forth in Dr. Pendleton’s Church Manual were adopted. By an act of the body, the Church took the name Friendship Baptist Church of Christ. A pastor was not called until they met again on June 24, 1893. They unanimously called Rev. W. E. Johnson as pastor. Four deacons were also elected that day.
The Church soon started meeting in the Ballenger school building. The church used the building for conference on Saturday preceding the fourth Sunday and also on the fourth Sunday for regular church meetings.  Both of these meetings were held in the afternoon. In July, 1894, the record shows that the church had thirty three members.
The first building was built in 1907. Rev. J.E. McManaway was serving as pastor during the construction period. In 1945 the church purchased a house for the pastor. Rev. Palmer Leonard was the first pastor to occupy the parsonage. This particular house was sold in 1959, and the money was applied toward the new parsonage which was built the same year. This new parsonage was constructed while Rev. T. Alfred Woolbright was serving as pastor.
n 1956, under the leadership of Rev. B. Milford Vaughn, the church completed a new sanctuary. The church presently uses this structure, which has undergone major remodeling on two occasions. An educational wing was added in 1963. Rev. T. Alfred Woolbright was pastor at the time the educational wing was added.
In 2000, under the leadership of Rev. Jim Bates, the church opened its new Family Life Center.  Rev. Bates served the church until 2003.  Rev. Steve Durham was called as pastor in June 2004.  Today the church continues to serve the Lord with over 500 members.