Coleman Baptist Church has a rich history. Our church has enjoyed great triumphs and faced some dramatic and somber events. The theme of each memory of this precious church is that God is faithful. God is good. And it is in Him that we put our trust.
Follow our journey below as we explore each milestone which shows God's hand. Feel free to add a comment with your own memories of Coleman Baptist Church and what it has meant to you.
After Oklahoma reached statehood in 1908, the folks around this area of Johnston County changed the name of the town from Ego to Coleman. The town was laid out and streets were named. The post office was established in 1910. Homes, businesses and the school were built. Four churches were also established.
One of those churches was the Baptist church, which was established in the present location. Friends and relatives donated stained glass windows in honor of their friends or loved ones. The church grew rapidly and many members were added. It was a very prosperous and progressive church for many years.
The first meeting minutes in our possession are from October 4, 1924. Enrollment shows some members were received in July, 1923. The minutes continue until September 29, 1929.
The Great Depression
When the Depression hit in the late 1920s, many families lost their homes and had to seek work elsewhere. Some of the churches were torn down, but the Baptist Church remained. Unfortunately, the membership reduced substantially and eventually the doors were closed in the 1930s due to lack of funds and so few members left.
However, the building was utilized by ministers of other denominations after the closing. At one point the building was used as a Union Church where anyone could worship.
By the late 1930s the Baptist Church had been reorganized. The church continued to grow through the 1940s.
Rebuilding after the 1948 tornado
In May, 1948, the church, along with almost every home and business in Coleman, was destroyed by a severe tornado. Services were then held in the school auditorium. (While meeting at the school, the church presented a petition letter on September 29, 1948, to join the Johnston-Marshall Baptist Association and were received by vote.) A building committee was appointed in February 1949 to replace the building at the same location as before. While the building was far from being finished, the first service was held in the new sanctuary on Saturday, September 2, 1950.
In July, 1953, a dedication service was held for the new building, which was constructed completely by volunteer labor.
During the summer of 1954, the Sunday School rooms were added onto the original building. A fellowship hall/kitchen was built in 1974. The parsonage was finished in 1978 and was dedicated on November 19, 1978. A baptistry was added in April, 1981. A new floor was installed in the auditorium in November, 1982. Central heat and air were added to the auditorium in December, 1984. Rocking the outside of the building and adding a covered porch to the fellowship hall was approved in August, 1985. New propane stoves were installed in all of the classrooms in October, 1989. Volunteers completed most of the construction on all of these projects.
Rebuilding after the 1990 fire
On December 29, 1990, the building caught on fire, totally destroying the inside. Through insurance coverage and donations from other churches and individuals, the building was able to be rebuilt. The construction lasted from January through May, 1991.
Our first service back in the building was on May 5, 1991, and the church building was rededicated on August 18, 1991.