In early November 1998, a group of mission-minded saints gathered together in unity and love on a Sunday morning. The purpose of the gathering was to worship the Lamb of God and to develop a way to continue the advancement of the gospel through World Bible Missions. One week later, the saints met in a rented storefront in Eastside Plaza in Athens. This meeting was the beginning and formation of Freedom Baptist Church. The pastor was Roy Hogan. Church membership began and about 25 saints united in November 1998.
God blessed financially and spiritually. Many came to Christ in that storefront building. God made it possible to purchase land for a church building in the summer of 1999. Five acers of land was purchased on Velma Road in the city limits of Athens, TN. An architect was hired shortly after the land purchase to begin design of the church building. Ground was broken for the new church building on Velma Road in January of 2000. The first service was held in the new building on July 2, 2000. Sixteen new converts saved in the storefront building were baptized in the new building the first service.
In August 2007, site preparations began for the construction of a building to serve as the fellowship hall and World Bible Missions office. This building was built over a period of time. The members chose to pay for the building at it progressed rather than borrow money. The building was completed in 2012.
The Lord has been good Freedom Baptist Church. Freedom Baptist Church has been blessed to have some of the dearest saints of God who was willing to sacrifice for the cause of Christ. Without them, there would be no church building standing at 2207 Velma Road Athens, TN.
On November 12th, 2020, God called brother Roy Hogan, our founding pastor, home to glory. Many times, brother Roy would speak of his father’s words, “that he wanted to go down with a hot gun barrel.” His father did just that and so did he. We are forever grateful of the sacrifice made by “our preacher”, and the commitment to follow the vision God gave him. We miss him dearly, but we know we will see him again very soon.
On Sunday April 10th, 2022, Freedom Baptist Church voted on brother Chad Oody as the next pastor of the church. The vote was 100%. Brother Chad and his wife Shay, have three children: Bryer, Baylor, and Brayln. It has often been said that brother Chad is an “old-time preacher man” in a young man’s body. Without a doubt he was sent to Freedom “for such a time as this”.
We are very grateful for all that God has done here at Freedom Baptist Church, and we are excited for what God is going to do in the future. If you are in the area or just passing through, we would love for you to stop by and visit us sometime.