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First Baptist Church in Newton: A Historical Pillar in the Newton Community

Massachusetts residents in search of a friendly and welcoming church may wish to take history into consideration. The First Baptist Church was founded way back in 1780 in a building just west of its current structure on the banks of Crystal Lake, then called Baptist Pond. Today, First Baptist is a center for community spirituality, support, and giving.

Boston architect John Lyman Faxon designed the current building in 1888, which now is listed in the National Register of Historic Places. The church includes late 19th century American stained glass influenced by the work of LaFarge and Tiffany. It also also features a bell tower, dedicated in 1932 as the "America" Tower. The tower was installed in 1899 in memory of Reverend Samuel F. Smith, who was a minister at the church for twelve years in the 1800s. Even the organ, derived from Hook-Hastings Opus #1906, was installed in 1901.

Inside, the First Baptist Church strives to maintain its original values. Bernard of Clairvaux said, "The measure of love is love without measure-" and the Church is dedicated to loving its members and its community. To this end, FBC encourages those of all backgrounds to feel welcome within its walls.

"We are blessed to have a large sanctuary where we are able to regularly host collaborative events with various faith based, philanthropic, and arts communities," says Senior Minister Sean Witty. The Church offers special programs on Sundays that are designed for children. These programs include Kids Create, Kids Serve, where children gather for music, art, drama, poetry and service projects. On the first Sunday of every month, FBC invites parents to meet and connect over a meal.

Further, FBC is a pillar in the arts community, from Sunday services to overall involvement. As a board member on the Newton Cultural Alliance, the Church even offers itself as a venue for events throughout the year. On Sundays, services are complemented by a mixture of ancient, traditional and contemporary music- something for all audiences.

With a beautiful setting and a history of kindness, the First Baptist Church welcomes those looking for a church home. Minister Witty tells us, "We are seeking to gather people who are interested in living a life characterized by radical hospitality."

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