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Pastor sees congregation grow

Posted: Sunday, January 26, 2003


The Rev. Eric Taylor, a

former pastor of Oakey Grove Baptist Church in Evans, started his own

church last year and has watched his

congregation of 19 grow to more than 100.

Photo by Jim Blaylock

The Rev. Eric Taylor stepped out on faith.

He tendered his resignation as pastor of Oakey Grove Baptist Church in Evans - a position he held for nearly eight years - and started his own church.

"I didn't tell my wife or children," Taylor said. "I just turned in my letter."

Since that day 11 months ago, Taylor has been amazed at what has transpired. Emmanuel Faith Tabernacle, the name he chose for his non-denominational church, began meeting at Taylor's house with just 19 members.

A month later, services were moved to Martinez Community Center to accommodate the church's 80 members. Today, the congregation, 120 strong, meets in the auditorium at Westside High School - where Taylor is assistant principal.

"The Holy Spirit was directing me to start a church that was strictly biblical," Taylor said. "It's a new experience because everybody now has to look to me. It's a lot of pressure because you want to make sure you do everything right and you have to make sure you're committed to what you are doing."

Taylor said he patterns his church after First Baptist Church, which has a "very dynamic congregation. In the future, we hope to be a mini First Baptist Church," he said.


Individuals looking for a church home are invited to visit Emmanuel Faith Tabernacle. Sunday school begins at 9:30 a.m., followed by morning worship at 10:45 p.m. Counseling sessions are conducted at 7 p.m. Tuesdays and bible study is from 7 to 9 p.m. Wednesdays.

The Closer Look, a television show hosted by Taylor, airs locally at 8 p.m. Sunday and Monday on Channel 66.

"It's pretty much elementary biblical teaching," he said.


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