First Baptist Church of Orange was born in 1878 as an answer to the prayers and vision of the Reverend Andrew Peddy and 18 other courageous Southern Baptist Believers. For over 130 years, Vision has been the watchword for the church. Vision has led the church to develop programs, establish missions, initiate ministries to the needy, build the facilities, and to energetically work to reach those who do not know Christ as Savior, not only in Orange, but around the world.
In 1883, a plot of ground on the corner of Green Avenue and Fifth Street was given by a family in the church who had a vision for a house of worship. In 1914 that dream became a reality as the first sanctuary building was dedicated “to the Work and Worship of God.” The silver dome has long stood as a symbol of God’s vision for Southeast Texas. With World War II, the population in Orange exploded due to the shipbuilding industry. With that expansion, First Baptist Church had vision to construct additional buildings, eventually to encompass an entire city block.
Throughout her history, the church has been a family to hundreds of people who had a heart to follow our Lord. The church has been served by godly pastors and staff members. Each one has placed his stamp on the vision of the church. With each vision has come considerable advancement.
Most recently in 2001, First Baptist Church had a vision to relocate our ministries and facilities to a more central location in Orange and Orange County. Through much investigation, discussion, prayer, and sacrifice, the church secured a 117-acre tract of land on a major thoroughfare. In January 2012, construction began on our new 32,000 sq. foot facility. The building was designed to be functional for our church and inviting to be used by the community. After 130 years at our downtown location, on May 26, 2013, the building was dedicated as the new home for First Baptist Church.
As we look over the past four years, we can see that God was with us each step of the way, to guide and to guard. We are grateful to Him and our forbearers who have paved the way for our generation. As we look ahead, we are still compelled by faith in the vision of God for our future. Though the past has been glorious, the best is yet to be!