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Grace Baptist Temple was founded by Dr. O.E. Caldwell and Rev. Ralph R. Mathews. A faithful group of 36 Christians met on April 17, 1949 in the auditorium of the Nitro High School for Easter Sunday services. Originally called Nitro Baptist Temple, early services were held in a tent in Nitro, West Virginia with Dr. Caldwell and Rev. Mathews as Co-Pastors. After purchasing the property on MacCorkle Avenue in St. Albans, the name of the church was changed to Grace Baptist Temple. When the foundation was poured a New Testament was sealed and placed under each corner of the building as a reminder that our church is now, and forever, built upon the Word of God. The first services held in the existing building were held in the basement in August 1950. The auditorium, which was completed in 1955, was the largest auditorium in the state at that time. Most of the labor for the building was furnished by the members of the church.
On June 13, 1999, groundbreaking ceremonies were held for our Activities Building. It includes a full-size gymnasium, kitchen, and dining room. This project was completed in December of 1999, and continues to be used facilitating countless ministry efforts, church dinners, and receptions.
Pastor - Brian Dean
Pastor Brian came to GBT in August of 2010. Under his leadership our church continues to grow in spirit and in number. We are blessed, and thrilled, to have him as our pastor! His preaching is excellent, as is his vision for our church family, and you will not find a more friendly or personable pastor. We truly love the man that God has chosen to lead us.
Youth Pastor - Aaron Ramsey
Pastor Aaron began his journey with us in April of 2018. He has titled the youth group “Illumin8,” because our goal is to bring the Light (John 8:12) to the youth of St. Albans. He works hard to keep the teens active in the church, and encouraged to invite their friends. Aaron and his wife, Crystal, love Grace, and are thrilled to be a part of our church.
Minister of Music - Jason Skanes
Jason is incredibly gifted and anointed. His entire family is involved in our music ministry. The skillset he possesses and the humility he exhibits are a rare combination. We are very blessed to have him leading the music ministry of GBT.
Assistant Choir Director - Rachel Bostic
Mrs. Rachel is a very talented singer. She often ministers by singing specials, and helping brother Jason with the choir in practices and services. We are grateful to have her and her family as a part of our church.
Pianist - Cookie Ranson
We are positive that we have one of the best pianists in the world. Mrs. Cookie’s experience, practice, and desire to serve through playing have tremendously blessed our church! She is such as sweet person, and we praise the Lord that He lets her serve Him as our pianist here at GBT.
Office Assistant - Kim Adams
Mrs. Kim is a wonderful addition to our team, and a great help to our pastoral staff. She handles a great deal of office management work, as well as being a faithful member of the choir, and one of our Children’s Church volunteers.
Custodian - Linda Crago
Mrs. Linda is the one that makes sure our facility stays in immaculate condition. She works extremely hard every week taking care of our church building and activities center. She loves the Lord, His people, and our church. In her spare-time she is actually a drag racer, and was recently inducted into the WV Drag Racers Hall of Fame.
Brother Ernie has taken on a very important role in many of our construction projects here at the church, and has always done a remarkable job. God has used his gifts and talents in this area, as well as others, to strengthen our church. We count it a privilege to have him serving on our deacon board.
Brother Darrell is a great asset to our church family. Along with serving as one of our deacons, he also teaches one of our adult Sunday School classes, and often conducts the Wednesday night Bible study in the auditorium while our pastor leads our Awana program. God is using him greatly here at GBT.
Brother Ralph has been a member of GBT since the 60’s, and served under Dr. O. E. Caldwell. He was an officer with the WV State Police for 31 years, and is a member of our Deacon board. We praise the Lord for the example of hard work and faithfulness that Ralph continues to exhibit.
Brother Bob is a longtime member of Grace and is very knowledgeable concerning our church history. He served our country in the WV Air National Guard from 1969 to 1975, and now serves our church as a trustee and a member of the choir. His service is very much needed, and greatly appreciated.
Most any day of the week, you can find brother Larry working around the church. His kind heart, love for the Lord, and dedication are very quickly recognizable. He is always smiling, and is a member of the choir as well as a trustee. His work behind the scenes continues to help everything to operate as it should, and we are thankful for his faithful willingness to serve.