|People Sharing Jesus|
|Pastor - Bro. Gene Bracken|
Minister of Music - Freddie Borders
Secretary - Lisa Lack
Custodian - Sue Bilyeu
Oak Grove Baptist Church was founded in 1876. Although the date of its establishment is known with certainty, the circumstances surrounding its founding are less sure.
Bro. W.W. Williams was Oak Grove’s first pastor. In 1876, Bro. Williams was pastor of Pleasant Prospect Church with sixty members and Center Baptist Church with 119 members. During the year he also engaged in evangelistic activity resulting in the organization of six Sabbath schools, one of which probably was the organizational nucleus of Oak Grove. In September Bro. Williams and Bro. F.W. Sharp conducted a revival at the Bethlehem Baptist Church in Homer, Kentucky. Several of those making professions were among the first to be baptized into Oak Grove Church.
On March 3, 1877, the new church’s eighteen members purchased two acres of land on the Morgantown Road from Samuel T. Duncan for the sum of eight dollars an acre. Oral tradition holds that a log structure was erected on the property at the site where the present church building now stands. In September 1877 Oak Grove was admitted into the fellowship of the Clear Fork Baptist Association, the forerunner of the present Logan-Todd Baptist Association. Oak Grove’s first messengers to the Association’s annual meeting were H. Blanchard, E.F. Tatum. and W.S. Marshall. Over the years Oak Grove has played an active role in the Logan Baptist Association, hosting the annual meeting on nine separate occasions: in 1897, 1915, 1934, 1951, 1966, 1980, 1986, 1993 and 2004. On January 1, 2005, Logan Baptist Asscoiation and Bethel Baptist Association merged to form the Logan-Todd Baptist Association.
By 1880, under the pastorate of B.T. Mayhew, Oak Grove had grown to 56 members. By 1885 the church had a membership of 106. About two-thirds of Oak Grove’s membership through the years has come from baptisms with the other "one-third” coming by letter. Church membership at present stands at 336. In 1884 the log meeting house was destroyed by fire. In 1886 a white frame building was constructed and, with the addition of Sunday School rooms in 1952, served the needs of the church until 1962 when the present auditorium was built. In 1954 the fellowship hall was constructed. This building was extensively remodeled in 1972 and a new Sunday School wing was added to the auditorium. In 1986 the fellowship hall was again expanded and remodeled. In 1993 stained glass windows were installed in the auditorium. Oak Grove has provided a residence for the pastor and family since 1947. The present residence, a four-bedroom brick home, was completed in 1967. As the need has arisen for facilities, the people of Oak Grove have always found the talent, energy, and resources to meet that need.
By 1910 the Sunday School was an established part of church life at Oak Grove. It met each Sunday but preaching was limited to one Sunday a month with business transacted the preceding Saturday evening. Weekly preaching services on Sunday morning and Sunday evening with prayer meeting on Wednesday evening have existed only since the late 1940’s. At that time, Oak Grove called its first full time pastor, the Reverend Roy Sears.
In its over one hundred twenty-four year history, forty pastors have served Oak Grove. The present pastor of Oak Grove is Reverend Bob Barnes. His ministry at Oak Grove began in August of 1990. Throughout its history Oak Grove has provided programs and activities to promote the spiritual growth of its members and the community at large. The Woman’s Missionary Union (WMU) and its mission’s organizations have been an active part of Oak Grove life. Oak Grove has an on-going music program under the direction of a minister of music. In the 1990’s Oak Grove has seen a revival of organized programs for its youth. Over the years, Oak Grove has employed a variety of’ methods in its outreach: a radio ministry, a van ministry, a tape ministry, and the Deacon Task ministry. 1996 was the 120th anniversary of the founding of Oak Grove Baptist Church. A special Homecoming celebration commemorated the event. In April of 1999, Oak Grove honored the memory of beloved pastor Bro. Justus Moore by celebrating the 50th anniversary of his coming to Oak Grove. In February of 2000, Oak Grove voted to incorporate as a non-profit religious organization.
Historically Oak Grove has supported and served the Lord not only through the local Baptist Association, but also through support of the Kentucky Baptist Convention and the Southern Baptist Convention. Since 1947 Oak Grove has been a staunch financial supporter of the Southern Baptist Convention’s Cooperative Program and the missions work it makes possible both at home and around the world. For one and a quarter centuries Oak Grove has provided opportunities for worship, fellowship, service, and ministry.
Today. great changes are occurring in the Oak Grove community. A new public school building has been built within sight of the church. New housing developments are bringing new faces to the community. A by pass around the city of Russellville is resulting in growth to the Oak Grove community. These events are already bringing new people and opportunities for ministry within the outreach of Oak Grove Baptist Church. As we enter the new millennium, Oak Grove stands ready and willing to make a spiritual difference in the lives of all it touches.
Much of the historical content on this page was collected from a book titled
Centennial History of Oak Grove Baptist Church 1876 - 1976 by