On November 20, 1945, forty-six persons who had obtained letters from Fifth Baptist Church, met to organize the West End Baptist Church. Rev. Clarence W. T. Barnes was elected as its Pastor. Worship services were held in the West End Praying Band Room in the 1400 block of Idlewood Avenue in Richmond, VA.
In February 1946, three months after the initial organization of the church, a building at 2049 Grayland Avenue was purchased and the West End Baptist Church congregation moved to their new worship facility.
In February 1950, realizing the name West End Baptist Church did not sufficiently reflect the gratitude to God for his “Amazing Grace”, the members unanimously agreed to change the name to Grace Institutional Baptist Church (GIBC), acknowledging “God’s Amazing Grace” and emphasizing the teaching of God’s word.
Rev. Clarence W. T. Barnes retired as Pastor on December 25, 1965. Four ministers have succeeded him as pastor:
- Marion R. Tapscott: 1967 – 1972
- Daniel W. Crump, Jr.: 1973 – 1983
- John O. Crittenden, Jr.: 1984 – 1989
Michael W. Bennett was installed as pastor on May 5, 1991. A “Together We Build Program” which started under Pastor Crittenden, culminated with the purchase of a facility located at 300 Roanoke Street in May 1991 and the GIBC family moved from the west end of Richmond to the south side in June 1991. To further emphasize the truth that our faith and purpose are built upon the foundation of Christ’s life, death on the cross, and resurrection, our name was later changed to The Church Of God In Richmond.
Apostle Bennett emphasizes prayer and studying God’s Word.
Under his leadership, The Church Of God In Richmond continues to grow. We work to serve God and meet the physical and spiritual needs of other church members and the community.
We give God all of the glory for the great works that He is able to accomplish through His willing servants.