1991-2000

 

To commemorate Tabernacle Baptist Church’s 100th Anniversary, many special events were held throughout the year 1991. On January 27, Dr. Jack Noffsinger, former pastor, spoke at the 11:00 a.m. service, appropriately titled, “Let the Celebration Begin.”

On April 25, the Richmond Baptist Association Spring meeting was hosted by Tabernacle. Judy Fiske, James Hughes, the Tabernacle Handbell Choir and Pei Ling Chang, Chinese Baptist Church provided music.

On May 4 and 5, the PraiSing Virginia 1991 Workshop and Concert were held at Tabernacle. Judy Fiske and James Hughes served on the Steering Committee.

June 2 was the official 100th Anniversary celebration. Many Tabernacle members were adorned in turn-of-the-century attire, and during the Sunday School hour, paraded along several streets in the neighborhood. Dr. Fred Anderson, Director of the Virginia Baptist Historical Society, gave his 159th portrayal of Dr. William Hatcher. Dr. Hatcher was the pastor of Grace Street Baptist Church, from which came the beginnings of Tabernacle Baptist Church. The Richmond Concert Band performed and all enjoyed an old-fashioned ice cream social. The occasion was featured on one of the local TV stations that evening.

Tabernacle will always be indebted to Mrs. Margaret Emery, Church Historian, for her book, “The First Hundred Years,” a history of The Tabernacle Baptist Church, Richmond, Virginia. It was available in August 1991, and a lovely book-signing occasion gave members an opportunity to purchase the book personally signed by Mrs. Emery.

On September 20, a “Vision in Action” Banquet was held to raise additional funds as part of the Partners-In-Progress II renovation project.

As the 100th Anniversary year drew to a close, another former pastor, Dr. Roy Clifford, was invited to speak at the 11:00 am service on November 3, followed by a luncheon. Tabernacle also held Spiritual Renewal Services nightly November 10-13.

A second “Vision in Action” Banquet was held on August 27, 1992 to raise funds to enable the church to pay cash for the entire cost of Phase II of the renovation project initiated in 1987. Dr. Keith Parks, the President of the Baptist Foreign Mission Board, was the guest speaker. At the end of the evening, a tour of the renovated facilities was offered, as well as a concert by the Richmond Concert Band.

The official Ribbon Cutting Service for the Phase II Renovation was held on August 30, 1992. Speakers included Richard Denzler, Chairman of the Renovations Committee, Dr. Charles Nunn, and Rev. Keith Harris. Mrs. Sue Stuckey, who received the first official ride on the new elevator, performed the Elevator Ribbon Cutting.

Mrs. Betty Robertson joined the music staff on September 1, 1993, serving primarily as pianist.

After serving Tabernacle as Associate Pastor for 12 years, Rev. Mike Robinson resigned to become Pastor of New Covenant Baptist Church, here in Richmond.

Several Baptist Theological Seminary students served in various capacities at Tabernacle during the next four years, including Greg Compton. Greg served from September 1995 to May 1996. Rick Bennett joined the staff as Interim Associate Pastor serving from December 1995 to December 1996.

Marcus Mims served from July 1996 to August 1997. Marcus was ordained to the ministry at Tabernacle on June 1, 1997.

Bryon LePere joined the Tabernacle staff on May 16, 1997 and served as Associate pastor for Family Ministries. Rev. Cecil Gholston joined the staff on September 7, 1997 and serves as Associate Pastor. Ron Simmons joined the music staff on September 7, 1997, serving as Music Assistant, Vocal/Instrumental.

Keith and Susan Spangenberg also joined the staff in September 1997. Keith served as Minister with Senior Adults and Susan as Youth Assistant/Preschool Minister.

Former pastor, Dr. Roy Clifford, passed away April 4, 1998.

After faithfully serving Tabernacle for 17 years, Rev. Keith Harris retired June 1, 1998. The church honored the Harris family with a retirement luncheon on April 26, 1998.

Dr. Elmer West was called to serve as Interim Pastor on August 2, 1998. Dr. West came out of retirement to lead Tabernacle during another difficult transition. He was thoroughly immersed in the leadership of the church, delivering challenging messages and exhibiting a genuine love for Tabernacle Church. Dr. West faithfully served until the following spring of 1999.

The Pastor Search Committee recommended calling Dr. Harvey Myers as the eleventh pastor of Tabernacle Church in May 1999. Dr. Myers had previously served as an Associate Pastor, a Senior Pastor, a hospital chaplain and counselor and an adjunct professor of religion and ethics at a college and university.

Tabernacle Baptist Church was once again honored to ordain into the ministry Rev. Bryon LePere on November 14, 1999.