Gathering Spaces

Overview

Richmond’s First Baptist Church has a long history and tradition in mid-town Richmond. Our physical presence takes up an entire city block. Many residents use us as a reference point – a beacon in the middle of Richmond.

As you enter our building, you are greeted with a welcoming smile, however, our infrastructure isn’t quite as welcoming.  From the lighting to the finishes, it’s time for an upgrade.  If walls could talk, we’d want ours to say “hello neighbor, welcome to First Baptist.  Let’s sit down, get comfortable, and get to know each other.”

Timeline

Throughout construction, the church will be open for Sunday morning worship and Sunday School.  All work is scheduled to be complete by ONE SUNDAY, September 8.

April 2: Work begins on Boulevard entrance (in the Library and McDaniel Room)

  • Wednesday night activities continue as normal.
  • No effect on Weekday preschool or other weekday activities.

May 27*: Work begins on Mulberry Entrance and main hallway

  • The entrance nearest to the gym will become the main entrance.
  • The bathrooms near the Mulberry entrance will no longer be available.
  • There will be no Wednesday night programs; however choir will continue to meet as usual.

*Work on main hallway ceiling and soffits will continue throughout this part of the project.

Renderings

FAQs

  • April 2 – Work begins on the Boulevard entrance
  • May 27 – Work begins on Mulberry entrance
  • Work is scheduled to be complete by September 7.

To create more open and welcoming spaces to greet each other and our neighbors.  This “widening” of our main entrances will allow people to gather comfortably for informal discussion.

Absolutely!  The construction company often works with churches and knows how important it is to keep disruption at a minimum on Sundays.  They will do their best to remain neat and tidy.

From April 1 – May 26 all regular activities will occur, except the McDaniel Room and Library will not be available.  After May 26, weekday activities, other than choir and some gym activities, will not be held.  Take-out meals will be available during June and July, but there will be no Wednesday night fellowship.  Vacation Bible School will occur at Tabernacle Baptist Church on Grove Ave.  Sunday worship and Sunday school will occur each Sunday throughout the construction period.  

The Gathering Spaces committee has worked with the weekday preschool, a vitally important ministry of Richmond’s First Baptist Church, to minimize the effect on the weekday program.  No work will occur at the Mulberry Street end of the building until after preschool finishes for the summer; however, the extended two week session will not be held this year.  One existing preschool classroom has been relocated to create space for the gathering space near the Mulberry entrance.  Renovations have been done to the crib nursery so that space can be used by the preschool during the week, while remaining a nursery on Sunday mornings.  

From April 2 – May 26, the Mulberry Street entrance will be available as usual on Sundays, as well as during the week and Wednesday nights.  After May 27, the  Mulberry entrance will likley be closed for part or most of that time; the church will use the gym entrance for office visitors during the week and for Sunday mornings when needed.  The Boulevard entrance should be available on Sundays throughout the construction.  The Main Hallway should also be available on Sundays, and the space (which will be under construction) will be made safe for Sunday mornings.  All work is scheduled to be complete by ONE Sunday, September 8.

Actually, the church will have three libraries.  An expanded Resource Library will be located on the second floor near the elevator.  Materials most useful to teachers, including Bible commentaries, will be relocated here.  Children’s books will move to a new children’s reading area, located by the preschool.  The Rear Foyer Gathering Space will have library bookshelves lining two walls for inspirational reading material.

Starting April 2, the men’s bathroom and family bathroom near the Library will no longer be available.  After May 27, the Mulberry bathrooms will also be taken out of service.  The bathroom beside the gym and the women’s room off the Boulevard foyer will be available on Sundays throughout construction.  Second floor and basement bathrooms should be unaffected by the construction.

Richmond’s First Baptist Church Endowment Fund is underwriting the project.  The Fund welcomes church members and friends to contribute to this restoration and improvement for the future of our church as they have in pervious projects.

If you would like to partner with the Endowment Fund and make a contribution or a memorial gift, please reach out to Donna Earley at earley@fbcrichmond.org.