New life in Marlborough’s historic First Baptist Church

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From Jim Ash, Chief Executive Officer

Greater Grace Christian Fellowship Pastor Bailey Norman spoke some words of encouragement during Pastor Logan Loveday’s initiation ceremony.

MARLBOROUGH – In one of Marlborough’s historic churches, there is a new sense of excitement and purpose in the First Baptist Church with the recent merger of two wards and the appointment of a new pastor, Logan Loveday.

The listed building received a major facelift a few years ago and the members of the newly merged community look forward to improving and expanding their service to the community.

Founded in 1868, the First Baptist Church of Marlborough is a long-time member of the American Baptist Association and a new member of the Baptist Convention of New England (BCNE), a network of more than 370 churches. The BCNE works to connect New England churches to resources and training opportunities. The goal is to increase Christ followers through partnerships, equipment, and encouragement.

As it turned out, the BCNE played a significant role in the events leading up to the recent merger. This story harks back to the retirement of longtime First Baptist Church pastor Stafford Trapp, who resigned in August 2019. Reverend Richard Kirk then served as the Interim Primary Pastor for First Baptist through Easter that year. At this point a search committee was formed to find a new full-time leader for the Church.

At about the time the search committee was formed, First Baptist board chairman Rod Erlandson contacted BCNE executive director Dr. Terry Dorsett to inquire about the benefits and requirements of joining the BCNE. This led to a performance by Dr. Dorsett’s son-in-law, Loveday, pastor of Hope Community Church in east Marlborough.

The First Baptist Church welcomes and serves all ages.
The First Baptist Church welcomes and serves all ages.

One thing led to another, and within a few months the Hope Community Church merged with First Baptist and Loveday was appointed full-time pastor of the newly united congregation.

Looking back on the events of last spring when he and Hope Community Church came into contact with the people of First Baptist, Pastor Loveday said, “There was this beautiful union that God formed with us there.” The union seemed to be for both churches to be a natural next step.

Three pastors from Marlborough were present during a formal dedication ceremony in September, Pastor Chad Braswell (Metro Church), Pastor Bailey Normal (Greater Grace Christian Fellowship) and Father Michael McKinnon (Holy Trinity Anglican Church). In recent years these men and their families have developed a close friendship with Pastor Loveday and his family.

Regarding the changes in the First Baptist Church, Pastor Braswell said: “I really see this as” [an] amazing, refreshing, revival of what God is trying to do in our community. ”

Pastor Norman added, “All of our churches, all four of us are within a mile. As a pastor, I am so encouraged to have three more brothers right next door. I’m so excited to see what the future has in store for all of us. “

The installation ceremony was of particular importance to Dorsett. He turned to those present at the installation ceremony and said, “You know? [Logan] as a pastor, and he’s a good pastor. You will love that. I know him to be an amazing husband for my daughter. I know him as an incredible father to my three grandchildren. I’ve never known a better father. All in all, that makes him a pretty good guy. “

BCNE Chairman Neal Davidson was the keynote speaker. He encouraged Pastor Loveday to organize his ministry according to the exhortation of the Apostle Peter, who wrote: “Be shepherds of the flock of God under your care and watch over them, not because you must but because you are ready as you are God it wants to be you; not seeking dishonest gain, but eager to serve; not the master of those entrusted to you, but rather be role models for the flock. “

Looking to the future, Pastor Loveday commented: “Our mission is to get to know Christ and to make him known. I have seen firsthand the blessings people experience when they choose to follow Jesus and participate in authentic and caring church fellowship. We hope to share this blessing with those who walk through our doors and with whom we interact in our community. “

The First Baptist Church is located downtown at 22 Mechanic Street in Marlborough. Services are held weekly on Sundays at 10:00 a.m.

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