In the early days of World War II, area Baptists, concerned because gasoline rationing made it difficult to travel to downtown churches, came together to establish a new church. On April 26, 1942, Temple Baptist Church came into being when thirty-four charter members met at the W.J. Smith & Son Funeral Home under the leadership of the first pastor, Rev. Scott Hutton.
From those humble beginnings in a temporary location, Temple Baptist Church purchased and moved a chapel from Camp Patrick Henry in 1948. Dr. J. Walter Martin, Temple's third pastor, was called on April 2, 1949 after the resignation of Rev. William Corbitt. Dr. Martin began a twenty-nine year tenure that witnessed the salvation and baptism of hundreds of people, untiring efforts of many to reach the lost and comfort the distressed, built several buildings including the present sanctuary in 1978. Several million dollars were given to missionary and other Baptist causes. From a long awaited desire to start a mission, Temple Baptist Mission, later constituted as Immanuel Baptist Church, was started. Temple Baptist became an acknowledged leader in local and state Baptist associations.
Dr. Robert E. Gray served nine years as Temple's fourth pastor, continuing the fine tradition of leadership and service until 1990. Through his ministry, the church satisfied the debt of the new sanctuary with the "Debt Free in '83" campaign as well as updated the facilities in need of upgrade.
Dr. David H. Goodroe then led the church into the last decade of the twentieth century followed in 1995 by Rev. Thurman Hayes. Under Hayes’ leadership the church baptized well over 100 people into membership of the church.
In 2000, Rev. David B. Simmons began serving as Temple's seventh pastor. Pastor Simmons had served the church as its Minister of Education for three and a half years before the church called him as pastor.
In 2006, Rev. John A. Burtis (Associate Pastor), began serving as Pastor for a brief period in the transition of an Intentional Interim Pastor.
Temple was under the leadership of two interim pastors from 2006-2008, Rev. Robert B. Carter, II, and Rev. Jim Goebel.
In July, 2008, Rev. Lynn Hardaway accepted the call to become Temple’s pastor and has led the church to a place of genuine revival. Many salvations, baptisms and new members have been recorded, a spirit of joy and anticipation now fill the people and services of Temple. You are invited to come and join us for the journey into the future as we “do whatever God tells us to do.”
Temple Baptist Church
235 Harpersville Road
Newport News, Virginia 23601
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