On February 14, 1999, twenty-two individuals met at a shop owned by Carl Bryant to discuss the formation of a new church. The name "Purpose Baptist Church" was selected and Brother Fred Woodall was elected by unanimous vote to be the first Pastor. On April 6, 1999 the church was accepted into the TuskegeeLee Association of Southern Baptists. On February 20, 2000 the name of the church was changed to West Ridge Community Church, but this was reversed and the name changed back to Purpose Baptist on April 28, 2002. It has remained thus ever since.
Fred Woodall served as Pastor until May 9, 2001. Aaron Pruitt was called as Pastor on March 17, 2002 and served until August 5, 2002. Joey Polston served as interim pastor beginning on September 11, 2002 and was called as Pastor on November 13, 2002. He served until March 30, 2003. Pat Nobles served as interim pastor from July 16, 2003 until March, 2004, when Tom Grantham was called as Pastor. The church has been under the spiritual leadership of Pastor Grantham from March, 2004 until present.
From its formation until April, 2000, the church met in a building owned by Carl and Keith Bryant. In April, 2000, they began meeting at the Civitan Club in Opelika, and did so until October, 2000. They returned to the Bryant's building at that point, where they met until May, 2002.
On April 10, 2002, discussions were held to discuss purchasing property and a church building located at 3211 Waverly Parkway from a congregation formerly known as Faith Alliance Church. The decision was made to purchase the property in May, 2002 for $150,000. The church received contributions of $15,000 from the State Baptist Convention, and $5,000 from the Tuskegee-Lee Association. The funds in the church's building fund and a small loan covered the balance. The loan was repaid in full in December, 2002, leaving the church debt-free. To God be the glory!
On April 10, 2005, the church voted unanimously to approve a building project that would extend the existing building, adding three additional Sunday School rooms, two additional rest rooms, and extending the fellowship hall. This project was completed in October, 2005 at a cost of $118,000, and was paid in full at the time of the building dedication. To God be the glory!
The congregation continued to grow, and the need was felt for the construction of a new sanctuary on property adjacent to the existing building. The process began with a meeting with contractor James Lloyd of Colyer-Lloyd Construction Company on July 16, 2007. The church voted unanimously on February 3, 2008 to proceed with plans for a new sanctuary at a cost of approximately $900,000. After much work, sweat, energy and prayer, the new sanctuary was completed and dedicated on August 2, 2009. On August 23, 2009, the first baptismal service was held in the new sanctuary, with twelve wonderful souls baptized. To God be the glory!
In December, 2009, the decision was made to put Pastor Grantham on the field in a full-time capacity.
On June 16, 2010, the church voted to install four new deacons to minister to the growing congregation. Wayne Skinner, Gerald Long and Zack Roberts joined with the existing deacons (Carl Bryant, Keith Bryant and Henry Stokes) to form the deacon body of the church. Brothers Skinner and Long had been previously ordained in sister churches. Zack Roberts was ordained into the deacon ministry at Purpose Baptist Church on July 25, 2010. Joe Bearden was elected as the fourth new deacon in March, 2011.
As the congregation continued to grow, Mike Crumpler was recommended to the church body as the eighth deacon. He was confirmed by the church on May 11, 2011, and was ordained at the church on June 26, 2011. In April, 2012 the church voted to add four additional deacons - Raymond Baker, George Turner, Bobby Johnson and Benjamin Steele. Bro. Raymond had been previously ordained. The ordination service for the remaining three deacons was held on May 20, 2012. The church suffered a great loss with the passing of George Turner. Tom Specht was chosen and elected to serve on the Deacon Board in 2013.
When the new sanctuary was built in 2009, the upper floor was left unfinished. With the expanding needs of a growing congregation, the decision was made in April, 2011 to complete the upper floor, adding six new classrooms, two additional restrooms, a sitting area, and a balcony area which would add 50 additional seats to the sanctuary capacity. This was completed in August, 2011 at a cost of $119,000, and was paid for without additional borrowing. To God be the glory!
2012 brought yet another expansion of the ministry of Purpose as Purpose Mission Church, a Korean outreach of Purpose was formed. The congregation began and is currently under the direction of Pastor Paul Shin, and meets each Sunday afternoon at 12:30 P.M. 2013 saw the start of an English-as-a-SecondLanguage Class (ESL) to help to reach out to the Korean community.
2014 saw the addition of a church library, stocked with hundreds of books donated by the congregation and friends. The initial funding for the library came from memorial gifts in memory of Sister Sarah (Hood) Jordan, so when the library was completed it was dedicated in her memory, The Sarah Jordan Memorial Library. Much, much thanks goes out to Peggy Crumpler and numbers of others for countless hours of effort in bringing this dream to reality!
2015 came and with it two brand new ministries for Purpose - the Food Bank Ministry and the Prison Ministry. These were birthed from the hearts of the people of the congregation who wanted a place to serve and who wanted to minister to those in need. Terri Zacarro and Kim Hughes head up the Food Bank Ministry, and Diane Williford leads the Prison Ministry. We added overhead projectors and screen to give us additional flexibility in our worship services. This year also saw the ordination of Justin Segrest as a Deacon on August 2, 2015, and a new high of nine active deacons. To God be the glory!
2016 saw Purpose make a major step forward. Recognizing the need to have more of a youth oriented focus, the church voted to search for someone to serve as Youth Minister. After much prayer and reviewing numbers of resumes, the church called Tim Addy along with his wife, Brandy, to serve - not only in that position - but also as Minister of Music. Tim began his time of service here at Purpose on July 10, 2016. This is a huge step for the church in that it is the first time in the history of the church that we have had anyone on ministerial staff other than the Pastor. We look forward to the great things that God is going to do through Brother Tim's ministry! Welcome Tim & Brandy!
To God be the glory!