"This is the start of something great," Pastor Tim Evans said, referring to the church's new location and future ministry.
Before North Clay Baptist was formed, Evans was pastor of Centercrest Baptist Church, Center Point.
As the community around Centercrest began to change, a large majority of its members started to move to Clay and surrounding areas.
Church leadership began to pray about where the congregation could be most effective in reaching the lost.
That's when Barry Wood, pastor of Eagle Ridge Baptist Church, Clay, called Evans and started talking with him about merging the two congregations to reach the Clay area together.
Both pastors sensed God leading them to come together and recognized they had "similar goals and mutual interests," Evans
In 2010, Eagle Ridge Baptist and Centercrest joined to form North Clay Baptist with Evans as pastor and Wood as associate pastor.
"We did not meet much resistance (from the North Clay congregation) when we decided we wanted to move (and purchase the new building)," Evans
Members were poised and ready to reach a new area and start fresh in a new building, he
The church's new facility has a lobby, small sanctuary and at least 10 Sunday School rooms already completed.
It has a large sanctuary that will seat about 700 people, an upstairs area and several classrooms that are partially unfinished.
estimated the building will be completed by 2014, but he
said the church wants to focus first on settling into the community.
shared from Joshua 1:1-19 at the Jan. 27 service and urged church members to "be strong and courageous" in the midst of change.
and Wood agree that North Clay is now in a good location to best reach its community with the gospel.
"We want to stay on task and stay simple," Evans