The story of Emmanuel is a story of a God who is drawing a people to his name from every people, tribe, and nation, including the people of North Central West Virginia. We are grateful for the heritage, but we don’t live in the past. We are a people rooted in tradition, but reaching forward passionately to reach people for Christ. Our story reflects our central commitment to being centered on the Gospel.
Our beginnings start in 1945 out of the commitment to cling to and contend for the Gospel. Theological liberalism was running rampant in the mainline Protestant denominations, including the Northern Baptist. Some faithful saints in Clarksburg, along with their pastor, spoke out against the denials of core orthodox doctrines of the faith within the denomination and decided to pull out and form a new church that would be grounded in the fundamentals of the faith. In 1945 Fundamental Baptist Temple was organized and later the name was changed to Emmanuel Baptist Church in 1951.
As the church grew the focus was not only to defend the gospel but also to declare it to the surrounding area. Outreach was a priority for Emmanuel in those days with large bus routes and a robust Sunday School program.
As the ministry grew the church body also saw a need to demonstrate the Gospel to children in every area of life and ground them in a Biblical world-view. To this end, the formation of a Christian day school ministry launched in 1972 that has impacted many young people over the years.
Today Emmanuel is in a revitalization phase in which we are being centered on the Gospel and emphasizing reproducing discipleship. The Gospel is the center of our faith, our church, and our lives. Our story begins and ends with the Gospel.
Our story corporately is a picture in a group of people of what God wants to do in every individual’s life. To transform them by the power of His Gospel into Disciples of Jesus Christ. We exist to glorify God by making more and better disciples of King Jesus. We do this by demonstrating, defending and declaring the Gospel to the lost, living in a Biblically faithful Gospel community, and reproducing ourselves through discipleship.
Senior Pastors of Emmanuel:
- Rev. Albert Johnson 1945-1950
- Rev. Bert Orman 1951-1954
- Rev. William Wilson 1954-1961
- Rev. Donald E. Matheny 1962-1975
- Rev. C. Richard Phelps 1975-1987
- Rev. Tom Couch 1988-1990
- Rev Bruce McBride 1991-2005
- Rev Joseph Riggs 2006-2014
- Rev Jayson Byrd 2014- Present