A BRIEF HISTORY
FIRST CHRISTIAN CHURCH (DISCIPLES OF CHRIST)
In 1843, five men purchased a lot at the corner of Main Street and Lancaster Avenue for a fee of $412.00. The purchase was made with the expectation of building a Christian Church house of worship there. The new church was named The First Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) and was dedicated December 7, 1844.
In about 1855, the building was destroyed by fire and later replaced with a very handsome brick Gothic structure. The second building served as a house of worship for nearly sixty years.
The third building, Italian Renaissance in design, was dedicated November 16, 1913 and was considered to be one of the most modern houses of worship in the state. The educational building was constructed in 1955 at a cost of $156,000. During the night of August 4, 1959, fire struck and completely destroyed the church building. The new educational building was saved.
Construction was completed on the fourth house of worship in late 1961 and dedication of the new church building was held on December 2, 1962. The new building, with it’s pink brick walls, inside and outside, tall bell tower, and beautiful stained glass windows, was built at the cost of $706,910.51. This building, with sanctuary seating capacity of 901, is the current building for First Christian Church in Richmond, Kentucky.
Throughout its history, Richmond’s First Christian Church has been served by twenty-four senior ministers.
Women have been serving as deacons since 1961 and as elders since 1987. Women and men share an equal role in the leadership of the church.
Our church has contributed its share of personnel in the World Wars. The local chapter of the American legion is named for Jesse Dykes, a member who lost his life in World War I.
Our music ministry has always been important and blessed with talented musicians and directors. The pipe organ in our current building was subsidized by a grant from the Andrew Carnegie Foundation.
The congregation has always been very cooperative in all enterprises of our denomination and has always contributed a large and generous share in every call for financial aid.
Since it’s beginning, the congregation has participated in several community outreach activities. One example is the instrumental role in the establishment of the Open Concern Clothing Bank in 1970, and its active support for that ministry to this day.
In 2006, First Christian Church spearheaded the formation of Hope’s Wings Inc., a non-profit organization, set up to provide an emergency domestic violence shelter for battered women and children in Madison County, Kentucky.
Committed to being a downtown church, this congregation plans to build upon its faithful legacy. This involves the continuation of programs and the formation of new outreach ministries that will help to fulfill the call of our church motto “Christ First Makes a Difference”.