300 Hawthorne Lane | Charlotte NC 28204 | 704-333-5428
Follow St. John's on FacebookFollow St. John’s on Facebook  

History

A meeting of some 200 worshipers to organize St. John's Baptist Church occurred March 26, 1922. This meeting was the culmination of a series of gatherings, prayer groups and conferences of Baptists concerned with the progress of their denomination in what was then eastern suburban Charlotte.

The church had begun primarily as an outreach of First Baptist Church, but in action that was perhaps to portend events to come, the small group of pioneers determined to accept full responsibility for establishing the new church without help from existing congregations. Just four years later, they dedicated the main sanctuary building in 1926.

Dr. Joseph A. Gaines and Dr. C. W. Durden served as the first two pastors, leading the church through financial crises and establishing it on sound footing. Dr. Claude U. Broach became senior minister in 1944, and under his leadership St. John's realized its most significant growth in missions and community ministry. Dr. Broach led the church to develop and nurture the "servant church" concept.

Dr. Julian Cave, senior minister from 1978 to 1986, broadened the church's social ministry and its impact on the community at large. St. John's completed numerous mission projects such as building a church in Pinch, West Virginia, and constructing homes in Charlotte through Habitat for Humanity.

Dr. Thomas H. Graves became the fifth pastor in October 1987. He helped initiate a revitalization of the St. John's spirit before leaving to become the first president of the new Baptist Theological Seminary in Richmond.

Dr. Wm. Richard Kremer served as St. John’s sixth pastor from November 1991 until June 2009.  He came to St. John’s after pastorates in Kentucky and South Carolina.  He played a vital leadership role in the United Baptist Association, which is a multi-racial, non-geographical association.  He worked diligently to expand its mission.

In October 2009, Dr. Layne smith came to serve as Intentional Interim Pastor, leading the church through a self-study.  He facilitated the work of the church in remembering and celebrating where it has been and in clarifying its future focus as well as its mission in the world.