This meeting is over but it was a great success
Contact the BHSQ for a special issue of Forum
with notes on the churches mentioned below
Baptist Historical Society of Queensland
Announcing the Festival of Baptist Heritage 2002
||Nundah (1st church)||
The work of Jireh Baptist Church, Queensland's second Baptist church and one of the most effective church planting fellowships, will be remembered at function to be held on Saturday May 18. The celebration is being organised by the Baptist Historical Society of Queensland and will take place at Centenary Community Baptist Church, Horizon Drive, Middle Park.
The venue has been selected because a considerable portion of the funding for this building came from the sale of the Jireh property in Gipps Street, Fortitude Valley. The date coincides with the anniversary of the opening of the Centenary building. The function will take the form a buffet meal at 6pm followed by an interesting program of review and reflection.
Jireh Church was officially formed 140 years ago as an alternative to the first church in Brisbane (now known as City Tabernacle) and was led for 39 years by Rev John Kingsford. Under his dynamic ministry, Jireh church soon established other churches which in turn continued the tradition and so perpetuated the missionary vision of Mr Kingsford for many generations.
The following excerpt from the Centenary book of the Jireh church shows the spirit and remarkable extent of this expansion
"In 1874 Windsor Road was commenced as a Mission Station. From this church we find Ashgrove branching out in 1937 and from it The Gap in 1959. [Helensvale was also supported by Windsor Road.] Albion, another daughter, commenced work in 1882 and extended her witness in 1926 with the opening of Gordon Park. [Albion also had a hand in planting churches at Stafford and Albany Creek - now South Pine Community Church.] The cause at Nundah, established in 1888, demonstrated the idea of extension when it began to operate Banyo as part of its plan in 1930."
"Quoting the words of a previous Minister, that 'Jireh
had a child in her old age' we direct our thoughts to Norman
Park, when seventy years after the establishment of the Mother
Church, the year 1931, a group of members resident in that locality
instituted services. [Norman Park is now part of Carey
Baptist at Balmoral.] Bulimba in 1861 and Toowong
in 1881 can trace their beginnings back to Jireh. At the time
of this writing  the total membership (not including adherents)
of the Churches mentioned reaches the figure of 632. All the above
Churches are still operating and presenting a witness worthy of
the faith of those who 'blazed the trail' in the Name of the Lord.
We cannot find another church in Queensland,
and would be interested to learn of any throughout Australia,
with the remarkable record of four Daughter Churches, three Grand-daughter
Churches and one Great Grand-Daughter Church, as well as two others,
the responsibility of whose beginnings we accept."
This remarkable record surely makes Jireh "Queensland's greatest church planting congregation."
When Jireh finally closed in 1978 after a long history of evangelism, pastoral care, missionary outreach and denominational support, the proceeds from the sale of the property were used to help fund a new building for the fellowship which had been meeting in Centenary area since 1974. This work quickly outgrew rented premises. Proceeds from the old Jireh property were dedicated to carrying on the "name, ministry and memorials" of the historic church. This funding enabled an early start on the building in Horizon Drive, Middle Park. The present church, orignally named "Centenary Jireh Baptist Church" was opened on May 21, 1983, and so it became the fourth and last plant by Jireh [now called Centenary Baptist Community Church]
The old Jireh building, designed by the famous colonial architect, Benjamin Backhouse, was listed by the National Trust in 1970 was destroyed by fire 6 Feb 1987. After lying unused for many years, the area is now apparently about to be redeveloped.
The Baptist Historical Society invites people having associations with Jireh, Albion, Nundah and Windsor Road (and their associated churches) as well as Centenary and other interested friends to attend the celebration function. Contributions of memorabilia and photographs for the historical displays are invited. For enquiries and RSVPs for the meal (bring a plate or donation), contact Eric Kopittke on 3376 4339