304-342-3249  ● 600 KANAWHA BOULEVARD, WEST CHARLESTON, WV 25302

HISTORY OF GRACE BIBLE CHURCH

1979 — 2022

In December, 1979, the Lord directed a few faithful, dedicated people in the establishment of Grace Bible Church. This represented the end of a long period during which this group earnestly prayed for the founding of a new fundamental New Testament Church in Charleston.

The organizational meeting was attended by ten adults and three children. At this meeting a full-time pastor Lyndel Stone, was named and all leadership positions were filled. The organizing members were Rev. Lyndel Stone, Betty Stone, James M. Page, Miriam Page, Ruth Page, Ruth G. Page, James Page, Jr. Mary Toliver, Thomas Toliver and Phyllis Toliver. Outstanding among outreach functions of this group would be missions support, preaching and teaching the Word of God, and discipleship. An abandoned sanctuary located at 1534 East Washington Street was rented and worship services began in February, 1980.

During Pastor Stone’s tenure, the church constitution was written and ratified. Pastor Stone worked tirelessly and faithfully in his position until June, 1980. In the seven months following Pastor Stone’s departure, the pulpit was adequately filled by seminary students and others.

In December 1980, Rev Aaron Lavender, sensing the leading of the Holy Spirit, requested that he be considered for the position of pastor. He provided leadership and continued progress toward accomplishing the church’s vision. Under Pastor Lavender’s leadership, the church continued to grow. The Lord blessed and the building was purchased. In September, 1986, Pastor Lavender was called to a full-time ministry in Kansas City, Missouri.

With the pulpit vacant again, visiting ministers from Appalachian Bible College and others preached and taught the Word. During that period Reverend Matthew J. Watts and several members of the church he had pastured in Dunbar began to worship with our congregation. Reverend Watts became interim pastor on June 1, 1987, and served until September 30 of that year. While he was interim pastor, Reverend Watts led the church in the acquisition of the lot next door, on which a parking lot was constructed.

In October 1987, Reverend Ray Hoskins accepted the full-time pastorate. During his tenure at Grace, he introduced a number of ministries and continued the work of evangelism and discipleship. In 1991, he launched “Project Z” with the intent of rebuilding or remodeling the building. Pastor Hoskins departed in 1994 and Reverend Matthew J. Watts accepted the pastorate on October 2, 1994.

Pastor Watts has spearheaded many Community ministries and continued to lead the church in the areas of evangelism and discipleship. Under his leadership, “Project Z” was fulfilled and we purchased, moved into our current worship facilities at 600 Kanawha Blvd., West in February, 1996. The establishment and existence of Grace Bible Church was and continues to

In December 1980, Rev Aaron Lavender, sensing the leading of the Holy Spirit, requested that he be considered for the position of pastor. He provided leadership and continued progress toward accomplishing the church’s vision. Under Pastor Lavender’s leadership, the church continued to grow. The Lord blessed and the building was purchased. In September, 1986, Pastor Lavender was called to a full-time ministry in Kansas City, Missouri.

With the pulpit vacant again, visiting ministers from Appalachian Bible College and others preached and taught the Word. During that period Reverend Matthew J. Watts and several members of the church he had pastured in Dunbar began to worship with our congregation. Reverend Watts became interim pastor on June 1, 1987, and served until September 30 of that year. While he was interim pastor, Reverend Watts led the church in the acquisition of the lot next door, on which a parking lot was constructed.

In October 1987, Reverend Ray Hoskins accepted the full-time pastorate. During his tenure at Grace, he introduced a number of ministries and continued the work of evangelism and discipleship. In 1991, he launched “Project Z” with the intent of rebuilding or remodeling the building. Pastor Hoskins departed in 1994 and Reverend Matthew J. Watts accepted the pastorate on October 2, 1994.

Pastor Watts has spearheaded many Community ministries and continued to lead the church in the areas of evangelism and discipleship. Under his leadership, “Project Z” was fulfilled and we purchased, moved into our current worship facilities at 600 Kanawha Blvd., West in February, 1996. The establishment and existence of Grace Bible Church was and continues to be the marvelous work of God. Because we chose to listen to Christ’s leading, we can thankfully say that there, “Ain’t No Doubt, He Brought Us Out”.

be the marvelous work of God. Because we chose to listen to Christ’s leading, we can thankfully say that there, “Ain’t No Doubt, He Brought Us Out”.

Over the past 25 years under Pastor Watts leadership, Grace Bible Church has continued to extend the Grace of God locally, nationally and abroad. This has been accomplished through a number of church-based community outreach and overseas mission projects. Church-based ministries include, men, women, and youth discipleship groups and fellowship, children and youth mentoring and tutoring, South Central Regional Jail ministry, audio and video ministry. Grace Bible Church has also maintained a ministry of Grace and compassion by opening our doors to our neighbors in their time of grief and sorrow to host funerals and in their time of celebration to host weddings. Grace Bible Church has also maintained a mission focused by supporting both, home and of foreign missions in Africa, Asia and Mexico.

We give all the glory, praise, and honor to God for blessing us to experience 40 years of His Amazing Grace. We pray that it will please God to continue to extend to us His Grace that we might extend it to others until our Lord Jesus Christ returns.