The History of Our Church

Our church was organized in 1866 as the Ripley Baptist Church with only nineteen charter members. The name was later changed to Ripley Baptist Temple. Two years after its beginning, in 1868, this small congregation established a Sunday School in an effort to more thoroughly teach people the Word of God. The first building of record was erected near the intersection of  Church Street and Main Street in Ripley, WV in 1903. In November of 1959, the church called its first full-time pastor and the church constitution was completed and accepted by the congregation. It was at this time that the church became independent of the American Baptist Convention.

On March 3, 1963, the first services were held in the new church building at the corner of Third Avenue and Charleston Drive. In June of 1970, the church started its first bus route. Today the bus ministry of RBT reaches to every corner of Jackson County.  In 1973, the new educational building was completed with 15 classrooms, 2 assembly rooms, 2 offices, kitchen facilities and rest rooms.

“Where there is no vision, the people perish…” Proverbs 29:18

The Family Life Center was completed in 1990, which gave the church congregation a gymnasium, larger kitchen facilities and new restrooms. Because of church growth, the auditorium was renovated in 1994, with the extension of the platform area and again in 1996, with the addition of a balcony.

In 1997, the church purchased 14 acres of land in Fairplain, WV for future growth.  In 2001, the church celebrated the note burning, relinquishing them of the debt on the Fairplain property. Later a picnic shelter was built which included a kitchen, restrooms and storage building. The church currently uses these facilities and property for church picnics, day camp, open-air services, and many other activities.

Only eternity will show the full reward of those who have labored so faithfully for our Lord throughout the years at Ripley Baptist Temple. It is still the desire of this local church to carry out the Great Commission, exalt our Saviour, and to edify the saints. “Where there is no vision, the people perish…” Proverbs 29:18