The New Guide Baptist Church was organized by a small group from the Scotlandville area under the leadership of Reverend Ike Kelly. This group eventually moved to North 19th Street in 1914.
After the death of Reverend Kelly in 1915, Reverend L.C. Crier led the flock until 1921. Reverend Thomas A. Levy was called to pastor the church in 1922 and concentrated on building a new facility. In 1930 the new facility was erected. The church was called the Greater New Guide Baptist Church. Reverend Levy led the congregation until his death in 1946. Reverend Joseph H. Freeman was elected as pastor in July 1946. Under his leadership, many new committees and ministries were formed.
As the membership flourished, Reverend Freeman envisioned a larger house for worship. As plans were being drawn for a new facility, news of an available building was received. The Relocation Investigation Committee was formed and subsequently toured the Fairfields Baptist Church. The majority returned with a favorable report. The Greater New Guide Baptist Church moved to the new location in 1974.
Soon after settling in, the Guided Learning Center was established in 1974. After many years of growth and development, the center was renamed The Greater New Guide Learning Academy.
Financing the operational budget was always made possible through pledges and fundraisers. Since the early 1980s, however, the church resolved to become a tithing church. Blessings were abundant, and in 1981, seven years after moving to the new location, the church’s mortgage was retired.
Reverend Freeman died on June 10, 1985. Reverend Isaiah J. Webster, a former member of Greater New Guide was elected as pastor in October and installed on February 16, 1986. This was another banner day for the Greater New Guide family. Again, we were blessed with a leader who shows an interest in people (especially the flock over which he has been placed), a forceful teacher, and a staunch administrator.
The Membership has increased from 500 members (in 1985) to over 1200 members today. With the growing attendance, the need for an additional service was realized. On Sunday, November 4, 1990, the 8 A.M. worship service was instituted.
In 1989, the church acquired property on North Acadian Thruway, formerly the old National Food Store. The property was formerly called the Greater New Guide Plaza and housed the Learning Academy and the Clothes Closet. Today, this property is referred to as the Greater New Guide Christian Education and Family Life Center. The mission of the Center is “Empowering people . . . advancing families”. In addition to housing the Clothes Closet and Library, this facility is used for Sunday school classes, Financial Training, New Members classes and other classes that promote Christian discipline and growth.
The Church supports weekly adult and youth Bible classes averaging 250 persons weekly. The Sunday School averages 290 weekly attendance. Classes are available for all age groups. The church is also very involved in the life of the youth congregation and supports youth retreats and many other activities.
We welcome those who join this congregation. Two programs were instituted that make for an easy transition. The adult New Members class was initiated on August 3, 1986. The class meets for 12 consecutive weeks twice a year. The youth class meets once a year. Christian-based doctrines are emphasized. The classes assist the members in understanding God’s will for their lives while equipping and encouraging members to use their spiritual gifts.
Greater New Guide is active in the life of the community. It serves as a polling site. The Mission Ministry operates a Clothes Closet that provides clothing for the needy. A social worker reviews applications for financial assistance. The Evangelistic Ministry leads the church into the community to present the Gospel to all who are willing to listen. “Our Mission for the Master . . . People”.