The Selma Baptist Church of Christ was organized with eleven members by the missionary Rev. Solon Lindsley, of the Alabama State Convention. Rev. Lindsley was a Missionary of the Alabama State Convention in Selma and the vicinity prior to becoming the church’s first pastor. The constitution of the church was adopted on May 29, 1842.
May 29, 1842
FIRST CHURCH BUILDING COMPLETED
June 15, 1850
One June 15, 1850, the first church building was completed. It faced Church Street on the Northeast corner at the intersection of Alabama Avenue and Church Street.
April 5, 1900
On April 5, 1900, First Baptist Church purchased a lot on the corner of Dallas Avenue and Lauderdale Street. On May 3, 1901, a contract was entered into for the construction of the present sanctuary building. On the third Sunday in September 1904, the former pastor Rev. A.J. Dickinson preached the first sermon in the new sanctuary. On January 7, 1909, the church building was paid in full and a dedication service was held on February 28, 1909.
EDUCATIONAL BUILDING STARTED
August 5, 1923
On August 5, 1923, construction began on the Sunday School building adjacent to the Sanctuary building. The new building was occupied in late spring of 1924.
NEW EDUCATIONAL BUILDING APPROVED
July 12, 1962
On July 12, 1962, the church adopted recommendations to begin construction on a new three-story educational building. Groundbreaking ceremonies were held in August 5, 1962. Dedication and open house for the new educational building was held on January 12, 1964 and immediate use of the building began.
In 1965, Dr. Henry L. Lyon, III was called as the pastor of the church, beginning a ministry on May 2, 1965. Between May of 1965 and May of 1972, there were 1,053 additions to the church, 500 of which were by baptism.
Over the years, there were several minor upgrades to each of the church’s buildings. The lighting in the Sanctuary was replaced in 1989. The largest effort, however, was the 2001-2004 campaign and renovation to replace the slate roof at a cost of over $1 million.
In May of 2005, a renovation committee under the leadership of Jon Moore went forward with the daunting task of renovating the Old Educational Building. At that time the building was eighty one years old. The building was completely gutted and rebuilt at a cost of almost $2 million. This state-of-the-art facility was dedicated in May of 2011.
RESTORATION OF THE SANCTUARY
June 4, 2013
There was a concern that our sanctuary had not been updated in over thirty years. The undertaking was designed to be unparalleled in its planning and efficiency. The entire project from beginning of construction until completion had to occur in just ten weeks! Under the leadership of Harold Speir and the renovation committee much work was done before the beginning of construction. Construction was started on June 4, 2013. The original heart pine floors were restored, as well as the addition of a custom-designed chandelier and sconces. The pews were restored and a new screen for the organ pipes was installed. On August 18, 2013 we moved back into our newly renovated sanctuary.