The Lord has greatly blessed Calvary church
with a rich, history of faithfulness to the gospel of Jesus Christ, the
Reformed faith, and the Great Commission that Jesus gave to his church. We have seen thousands come and go, and by
God’s grace have sent many on to engage in full time ministry as pastors,
teachers, counselors, and missionaries.
Our story began on Sunday, October 4, 1936, when 225 loyal followers of
Jesus Christ left the Presbyterian Church U.S.A. at a time when many of the
denominational leaders were departing from biblical and historic Presbyterian
doctrine. This group, under the leadership of Dr. Robert Strong, met for three
years in the American Legion Hall in Willow
During this time, the church incorporated as Calvary Presbyterian Church, and
found a denominational home with the newly formed Orthodox Presbyterian Church.
In 1939, the first building on the present property was dedicated.
Dr. Richard Gray served as the second pastor from 1949-1973. Dr. Gray led the
church into the Reformed Presbyterian Church, Evangelical Synod (RPCES), in
1964. Under Dr. Gray’s leadership, the Lord blessed Calvary
with steady growth, which resulted in the building of a new educational
building and sanctuary in 1970.
After Dr. Gray retired, Rev. George Smith was called as the third pastor of Calvary, serving from 1975-1996. In 1983, the RPCES joined with the
Presbyterian Church in America
– in an event commonly known as “Joining and Receiving,” and Calvary
consequently became a part of the PCA at that time. In the very next year (1984), a fire
destroyed our Christian Education building.
However, the Lord soon blessed us with new facilities, including our
gymnasium, which provides a venue for many of our youth activities and a service
to many groups in our community. These
new buildings were completed in 1986, Calvary's
fiftieth anniversary year.
1996 marked our 60th anniversary. And
with this milestone came another season of transition for our church. Rev.
Smith retired as Senior Pastor after 21 years of faithful service, and Rev.
Richard Tyson was installed as our new Senior Pastor in July of 1996. Pastor Tyson is a son of Calvary,
and served as Associate Pastor under George Smith prior to becoming the Senior
Pastor. Pastor Tyson served Calvary for
20 years, continuing the legacy of faithfulness and longevity in ministry laid
down by his predecessors.
The year 2016 – our 80th anniversary year – brought with it another season
of transition for our beloved church.
Pastor Tyson retired in April, after 20 years of faithful service. And
Pastor Mike Sharrett was called as our Interim Pastor in July, to lead us in
seeking the Lord's will in providing for us our next Senior Pastor. It was under Pastor Sharrett's leadership
that the Calvary Session adopted our current Vision Statement -- "To know
and extend the transforming love of Jesus Christ."