The Antioch Baptist Church was conceived in the hearts of former slaves in 1868. During this period in history, racism existed in ways that most of us have only read about. It was at this time that God called some brave men from the Paulina area to join together and form a burial society. The society was an organization that operated similarity to our present day burial insurances. Members paid nickels and dimes in membership dues and the society was responsible for their funeral expenses. The name Anti-Yoke was chosen for this society. This name spoke freedom–not tied or bound to anyone.
In September of 1870, the Anti-Yoke Society purchased two tracks of land in Paulina, Louisiana from Michael Martin and erected a building that was used for church services. The original structure still exists today. This building became known as the Anti-Yoke Baptist Church. The church was renamed Antioch Baptist Church in 1890 and was the only black church for miles on the east bank of the Mississippi River. In 1973, Ferdinand Gaines, Jr., became Antioch’s sixth pastor in its history. In August of 1999, Antioch relocated to a new 34,000 square foot facility in Lutcher, Louisiana and again underwent a name change. The new name, First Community Antioch Baptist Church reflects a church for the community, serving as a resource for both spiritual and human needs.
THE PURPOSE OF THE CHURCH
The purpose of First Community Antioch Baptist Church is to carry out the ministry of Jesus Christ as revealed in His Word (Matthew 28:18-20 KJV)
“And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth. Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen.”