Since 1874, the New Rocky Creek Baptist Church has continued to serve the Newton, Jasper, Butts and Putnam County area. Their mission is to exalt the Savior, equip the saints and evangelize the sinner. The 12-acre campus houses the original structure, an educational building and a multi-purpose building with eight classrooms, a nursery, fellowship hall and sanctuary. A family life center was dedicated in June, debt free.
"Our prayer was not just to erect a physical structure, but for the Lord to work in us and give us a heart for him through the process," said the Rev. Dr. Randal Reese, pastor of NRCBC.Reese noted many defining moments when God honored his faith. Reese sold his home in Perry and moved his family in hopes of attending Luther Rice Bible College. With very limited resources and no job, he believed that God would direct his steps. He was soon called to interview as pastor of NRCBC and accepted the position in 1991.
From 1995 to 2002, the church offered two morning worship services to accommodate the growth. The pastor emphasized the importance of the unity factor as they explored their options to build. They launched out by faith to enter phase one of their building program. Volunteer help poured in from local churches such as Gateway Community, Zion Baptist, Rockdale Baptist and Heritage Hills Baptist. Building chairman, Gary Hipps, and the men from NRCBC worked every other Saturday for a year to reduce the costs.
"Our people are indebted to these churches and we have since partnered with them in mission trips," said Reese.
Reese is thankful for the "mercy drops" — five men from his congregation accepted the call to ministry and others are experiencing salvation and baptism and are tapping into their spiritual gifts.
On staff is the Rev. Josh Hubbard, a graduate of Toccoa Falls Bible College who serves as Minister to Students. Reese described him as a visionary, wearing many hats as he ministers to approximately 70 children and drives the church bus. Becky Henderson serves in various roles with the children including VBS and works as Secretary/Treasurer. In July, the Rev. Clay Fallin came on board as the Minister of Music with 15 years of experience, and also teaches guitar.
The church is seeking a minister of education who will donate time on a volunteer basis with the hopes of eventually being added to the staff.
His teen years were turbulent for Reese when his parents divorced. After a period of rebellion, he attended Camp Zion and accepted Christ at the age of 21 and the call to ministry in 1983.
Reese married Deanna Caldwell in 1981 and they have two children — Jeremy and Beth. The pastor describes his wife as a faithful supporter and a source of inspiration.
Reese and his family experienced trust, trials and triumph first hand when Jeremy was diagnosed with melanoma. Their mailbox was flooded with letters of encouragement from friends and neighboring churches. After four surgeries, and much prayer and fasting, his son was healed and will graduate from Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College this year.
Reese earned a B.A, M.A, Master of Divinity and completed his Doctor of Ministry at Luther Rice Bible Seminary in May, 2009.
Before coming to NRCBC, he served as the associate pastor at Henderson Baptist Church from 1988 to 1991 and as the children’s church pastor at Second Memorial Baptist Church from 1982 to 1989. Reese preaches revival meetings and camp meetings throughout Georgia and Florida. He served on the evangelistic crusade to the Philippines in 1993 and Honduras in 1996.
The mission-minded church stocks a food pantry and offers community events such as Hunter Safety courses and a wild game supper in the fall.
Sunday school Bible study begins at 9:00 a.m. followed by worship at 10:30 a.m. and 6:30 p.m. Midweek services for children begin at 6:30 p.m. and 7:00 p.m. for teens and adults.
The church is located at 190 Rocky Creek Road off of Jackson Lake Road, Mansfield. The community is invited to attend the Creek Warriors Music Performance directed by Kathy Richardson on August 30 at 10:30 a.m. For more information, call (706) 468-6116 or visit the Web site, www.newrockycreek.org.