History of Calvary Baptist Church
Reverend Collins N. Polite
On Sunday, Feburary 20,1938, Reverend Collins N. Polite established Mount Calvary Baptist Church preaching its first sermon at 616 Clinton Street, Buffalo, New York 14210. Reverend Polite pastored the church until June 20, 1938 when he was Called to pastor a church in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
“Have Faith” Hebrew 11:1
Reverend Peter W. Trammell
On Sunday, September 18, 1938, Reverend Peter W. Trammell was installed as the Under Shepherd of Mount Calvary Baptist Church’s congregation. Under the divinely inspired leadership of Pastor Trammell the church grew rapidly as well as many ministries (still in existence today) were formed. Some which are; Deacon Ministry, Trustee Ministry, Sunday School, Ushers Ministry, Choir Ministry, Missionary Ministry, Nurses Ministry, and Christian Education Ministry.
Mount Calvary remained at its first location until April 1, 1939 when the church relocated to 476 William Street. Since the church had begun a gradual growth on June 22, 1940 Mount Calvary Baptist Chruch relocated to 245 Spring Street. On August 29, 1940, the church was incorporated but due to a typographical error “Mount” was omitted and the church officially became known as “Calvary Baptist Church, Inc.”. On September 14, 1940 245 Spring Street was purchased. The first mortgage burning ceremony took place on November 7, 1943. In February, 1947 another giant step for the church was taken by purchasing the vacant lot at 539 Williams Street, Buffalo, New York 14206 and the ground breaking ceremony for the new church was held on April 13th of the same year. The first service was held in the newly completed basement on October 3, 1948. Construction on the new sanctuary was completed September 23, 1951. The church’s physical footprint expanded in 1952, 1958 (also year the mortgage was burned), and 1960 as the congregation grew.
Clergy assistance provided by pulpit associate Reverend Samuel Bridgefourth under Reverend Trammell’s tutelage.
After 24 years of faithful and dedicated leadership, Reverend Peter W. Trammell passed away to glory on July 24, 1962.
539 Williams Street still doing GOD’s work!
“Going Up Together Acts 3:1 … The Little Church with the Big Heart”
Reverend L. T. Boyce
On Sunday, September 22, 1963, Reverend L.T. Boyce of Memphis, Tennessee was installed as the Under Shepherd of Calvary Baptist Church’s congregation. Under Pastor Boyce’s administration, the church’s membership grew tremendously. Pastor Boyce always displayed courage and a steadfast faith in God.
Under his leadership, Calvary reactivated their role in the Great Lakes Baptist Association, the Empire State Missionary Convention, and the National Baptist Convention USA, Inc. For many years Reverend Boyce shared his teachings with the community via the radio, and the weekly Sunday School Review. He was a great leader who established a long range building fund program, purchased a new piano, in 1972 purchased Church property at 1184 Genesee Street, Buffalo, New York 14211, the parsonage, formation of Discipleship classes and development of Youth Encampment weekend; a celebration of youth, held the 2nd weekend of June each year.
Clergy assistance provided by pulpit associates Gover C. Moon, William Callahan, John Dobson, Gentry Garmon, Larry Harris, Johnnie Ray Youngblood, Reverend Samuel Bridgefourth, Kinzer Pointer, Earnest Williams, Garry Hemphill, Bart Little, Timothy Caruthers, Robert Baines, James Williams, and Jackie Roberson under Reverend Boyce’s tutelage.
After 27 years of untiring, dedicated service, on July 13, 1991, God called Reverend L. T. Boyce home, thus ending another chapter in the life of Calvary Baptist Church.
1184 Genesee Street
“Turning the World Upside Down” Acts 17:6
Reverend Troy A. Bronner
The church also continued to support an active Girl Scouts and Boy Scouts programs, after School Tutorial, Adult Education, Effective Parenting Classes, along with a formal discipleship training program. A significant increase in membership led to an eight o’clock morning service along with the regular eleven o’clock service. The Elim Ministry of Prayer and Praise was established and met daily in the morning from 6:00 to 7:30 AM an in the evening from 6:00 to 7:30 PM where people of all races, ages, and denominational affiliations, from all over the city gathered to seek GOD’s face for revival.
Clergy assistance provided by pulpit associates John Dobson, Betty Pierce-Williams, Marcellus Martin, Reverend Samuel Bridgefourth, Clarence Brown, James Clark, Aaron Hudson, Ronald Jennings, Gloria Wilson, Veda Pierce, Arthur Boyd, Terry Warr, Michael Robinson, Marcia Fonville, Bobby Fonville, Ted Howard, Marcia Storey, Monica Blackford, Carlson Thompson, Ted Turpin, and Eric Gladney under Reverend Bronner’s tutelage.
On October 24, 1999, Reverend Troy A. Bronner was Called to establish the Elim Christian Fellowship, closing another chapter in the life of Calvary Baptist Church.
1184 Genesee Street Sanctuary
“Going Back to the Old Landmark”
Reverend David A. Keaton
On Sunday, August 12, 2001, Reverend David A. Keaton of Roanoke, Virginia was installed as the Under Shepherd of Calvary Baptist Church’s congregation. Pastor Keaton reorganized Bible Study as the Bible Institute held on Tuesday evenings. Under his administration, Sunday morning worship service was broadcast live on radio station WUFO, televised on Time Warner cable, channel 20, streamed over the internet, and developed a website.
Pastor Keaton developed a functional Directors’ Council, an annual Leadership Institution, annual Family Weekend Celebration, a Book Club for young adults, and Teen Discipleship. Pastor Keaton also merged two scholarship programs to form the Norman Fuller / L. T. Boyce Scholarship Ministry.
Clergy assistance provided by pulpit associates Gloria A. Bryant, Michael Robinson, Ray Mitchell, Carlson Thompson, Sylvester Harold, Carolyn Peeler, John Peeler, and David Wimbley under Reverend Keaton’s tutelage.
In 2009, Reverend Keaton resigned as Pastor and formed Redeeming Fire Fellowship Church, thus closing another chapter in the life of Calvary Baptist Church.
1184 Genesee Street
“It’s Always Good to Go to Calvary”
Reverend Quinton Chad Foster
On Sunday, November 7, 2010, Reverend Quinton Chad Foster of Houston, Texas was installed as the Under Shepherd of Calvary Baptist Church’s congregation. Pastor Foster renamed the Sunday School Ministry to Otis Hayes Sunday Church Institute. Under his administration, the Calvary Angelic Ensemble was reorganized, along with hosting a Praise and Worship Workshop, holding the Lord’s Last Supper Service every first Sunday where our congregation fellowship with other churches in the community. Pastor Foster reestablished Men’s Day and Women’s Day programs as well as combined Easter and Christmas programs with Sunday morning worship service. Pastor Foster was instrumental in replacing and upgrading the Church sign as well as purchasing a new Church Bus.
Pastor Foster was committed to teaching and to the expository preaching the Word of God on Sundays and through the noon and evening Bible Study classes. In addition to, strengthening the church’s community connection through the Missionary’s Food Pantry and other related services. Pastor Foster initiated other community activities and events, like Calvary Community Outreach Day, Youth Encampment Weekend, and meal distribution during holidays.
Clergy assistance provided by pulpit associates Minister Gloria A. Bryant, and Elder Frank Thomas under Reverend Foster’s tutelage.
In November, 2016, Reverend Foster was Called to pastor a church in Brooklyn, New York, thus ending another chapter in the life of Calvary Baptist Church.
1184 Genesee Street