PINE STREET BAPTIST CHURCH
Located on 400 S. Pine in historic Oregon Hill, Pine Street Baptist Church (PSBC) has remained a Southern Baptist fixture in the Richmond area since its founding in 1855. After a revival at Grace Baptist Church in Windsor Farms, the congregation decided that it needed a place of worship in the Oregon Hill community, since many parishioners made the trek to Windsor Farms two or three times a week. The location moved around various locations in Oregon Hill until support from various Southern Baptist groups made it possible for members to build their current church on Pine Street. PSBC has remained on Pine St. since 1882, with additions to the church building being made in 1925. The church can now accommodate 500 worshipers. In the early 1900s, it recorded the largest Sunday school in the entire Southern Baptist Convention.
Dr. Philip Turner, a North Carolina native, and his wife, Rev. Jennifer Turner, a Richmond native, have served as the ministry leaders at PSBC since 1991. Dr. Turner moved from North Carolina to serve as pastor of PSBC, citing “a deep desire to serve in an urban environment an a congregation that is rooted and grounded in God’s love for all people.” Dr. Turner is considered a gifted and innovative speaker who is very down to earth and easy going. Rev. Turner serves as Director of the Oregon Hill Baptist Center (OHBC), a 30 year old urban mission sponsored by the Richmond Baptist Association located in PSBC. OHBC moved to Pine Street in 1974 from its prior location on West Cary Street. Jennifer directs the church’s social ministries and outreach programs that are designed to build strong relationships with the people of Oregon Hill and the surrounding community.
PSBC participates in the Richmond Baptist Association and the Southern Baptist Convention, as well as the Baptist General Association of Virginia. The church’s 315-member congregation is primarily composed of white families and a small number of African American families. The congregation is predominantly older, but the young adult groups are growing
Pine Street Baptist’s schedule of events is quite extensive. The church offers the standard weekly Sunday Bible studies and worship, and Wednesday night prayer meetings and study, but also several other activities for visitors and members. Every Tuesday, “Kids on the Hill,” an after-school program, allows grade school children to stop by the church for homework help, crafts, recreation, snacks, Bible study, and much more. On the first Sunday night of every month, PSBC diverges from its standard services to offer “Sunday Night Alive,” an informal type of worship, complete with drama and music for the whole family. There are almost always outreach ministries based at PSBC, which currently include Senior Adult Dinners for community residents, Adult Home Ministries, and Caritas Homeless Ministry. Further, through the OHBC financial assistance, food closets, and counseling support are offered. PSBC sponsors recreational sports as well, most notably, a boys’ basketball team, men’s’ basketball team, and a co-ed softball team.
Profile prepared by Mark Osborne