First Baptist Church, Waverly, celebrated its 135th anniversary in July. The church was formed by a group of 15 people on July 14, 1883. No doubt those founders wanted a vibrant and healthy church that would endure.
During the first years, weekly services were held in the school; and a minister was present occasionally. Sunday School was organized three years later, and membership reached 100 by 1901.
Today, FBC, Waverly, supports national and international ministries/missions. The doors are open for educational and worship opportunities. The church participates in ministries which include Meals on Wheels, 15 years as a collection center for Christmas Shoe boxes, 45 years helping host the annual community Vacation Bible School, helping with the After School Kid’s Program, helping at Sunset Manor Nursing Home, participating in camping and involvement with God’s Store House and Coffey County Ministerial Alliance.
One story from the pages of history is that in 1899 a bell was installed to call the community together. It was placed in a bell tower to make the sound reach a wider area. It was purchased from Montgomery Ward & Co. and came with a five-year warranty good for ordinary use. Since that day, the bell has rung to announce church services, prayer time, weddings, funerals, and peace after war.
The church celebrated its anniversary on Sunday, July 29. A quartet from The Topeka Capital Barbershop Chorus sang, and items from the church’s history were on display. The public was invited to the worship service and lunch that followed.