Who We Are

“Commit to the Lord whatever you do, and he will establish your plans.” - Proverbs 16:3

God is doing some amazing things here at FBC. As we move into 2017, let’s keep focusing on Him and His leading of our church.

For the past couple years the Strategic Planning and Action Team has been meeting, praying, and gathering information and ideas from the church family about where God is taking the church. This next year we feel that God is leading us in some exciting directions.

As we continue to meet, we keep asking these questions:
What direction is God taking us?
What are the needs of our community?
How do we help our church family develop a closer relationship with Jesus?

Our goal is to create a long-term plan. We have and will continue to spend many hours praying and discussing what direction we feel that God is leading us in. We desire our church family to CONNECT with Jesus, GROW in their relationship with one another, and GO to our neighborhood, nation, and world to tell others about God’s unending love.

In 2017, please join us in praying for God’s will to be revealed to our church. We will be updating you throughout the year as plans and decisions are made, as well as asking for your input. Thank you for being faithful to God and to His church.

-Strategic Planning and Action Team

The Nature of God

We believe in the one, living and eternal God who is the Creator of all. He is holy, perfect, and living in nature. God is personal in that He concerns Himself with the affairs of all people. God has revealed Himself as God, the Father, Jesus Christ the virgin-born Son, and the Holy Spirit, all of whom are the same essence though distinct in personality. Deuteronomy 6:4; John 1:1-13

The Inspiration of Scripture

We believe that each word, as well as the whole of the message of scripture, was inspired by God. Therefore, we affirm that the Bible is the sole authority for Christian faith and practice. Timothy 3:16-17:2; Peter 1:20-21

The Existence of Satan

We believe in the existence of Satan and his demons, the enemies of God and humankind, who seek unlawful dominion through the overthrow of God's gracious rule. Genesis 3:1-4; John 8:44


We believe that all human life through creation has value. Humankind was created in the image of God, but Adam's original sin resulted in spiritual death and human separation from God. All have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God, and all persons need God's forgiveness. Genesis 1:27-31; Genesis 2:16-17; Genesis 3:1-6; Psalms 139:15; Romans 3:23; Romans 5:19; Romans 6:23

Our Salvation

We believe people are saved from penalty of sin by God's grace through personal faith in the atoning work of Jesus Christ, bringing them into a relationship of peace and fellowship with God. This redemption was accomplished through the death, burial, and bodily resurrection of Jesus Christ. Ephesians 1:7; Hebrews 9:12; 1 Peter 1:18-19

Our Future

We believe that those who receive Christ as Savior and Lord will rejoice eternally in God's presence, and that those who reject Christ will be eternally separated from God. John 10:27-30; Ephesians 1:13-14; John 5:11-13

Christ's Return

We believe in the imminent physical return of Jesus Christ to receive all believers, according to His promise. John 14:1-6; Acts 1:10-11; Thessalonians 4:16-17

The Church

We believe in the Church, a living and universal spiritual body with Christ as its head and all believers as its members. The local church is a visible example of a community of believers committed to worship, ministry, discipleship, fellowship, and evangelism. Acts 2:42-47; 1 Corinthians 12:13


We believe that all persons are created with a need to worship God. Worship is the personal and corporate expression through which the believer experiences and responds to the nature, personality, and will of God. We believe that the Christian should make a commitment to private and public worship on a regular basis. Psalm 95; John 4:21-24; Hebrews 10:25


We believe that all Christians have received God-given spiritual gifts for the purpose of building up a Body of Christ. The church is responsible to encourage the discovery of spiritual gifts, and to provide an environment where every member is given the opportunity to pursue ministry based on giftedness. Ephesians 4; Romans 12:4-8; 1 Corinthians 12


We believe that all Christians have been commissioned by God to actively proclaim the good news of Christ's love and sacrifice. Every believer is responsible for maintaining a lifestyle that invites others to personal faith in Jesus Christ. Mathew 28:18-30; John 17:20-23


We believe that baptism is a public symbol of the believer's death to the old life and resurrection to new life in Christ, and that bodily immersion, as the New Testament example, is required for membership in this local fellowship. Mark 1:5-10; Acts 8:36-39

The Lord's Supper

We believe that the Lord's Supper is a symbolic commemoration of Jesus Christ's sacrifice, His broken body and shed blood, and that this celebration is open to all believers. 1 Corinthians 11:16-29; Matthew 26:26-30 


We believe that Christians are to cheerfully and responsibly provide financial support for the ongoing ministry of Christ's Church. Further, we believe that members should maintain a regular and proportionate giving plan, understanding the need to support both the local and the world wide needs of the Church. 2 Corinthians 9:6-9

The First Baptist Church of Murphysboro, Illinois was organized June 27, 1867, with approximately sixty members, by Rev. Monger of Carbondale, Illinois. On October 10, 1869, a deed was made by Colonel John A. Logan and his wife, Mary, to the trustees of the church for a parcel of ground at 12th and Walnut for $400. A building was started and the cornerstone laid for the church in that year, however the building was never completed. In 1875 Rev. D.P. French connected with the American Baptist Home Missionary Society as pastor. The church had 22 members. The Sunday School was organized in 1876.

Later this congregation acquired the old Southern Methodist Church at the northeast corner of Locust and 12th streets where the congregation worshiped many years. Jacob Cole, who had been the Chaplain of the Thirty-first Illinois Regiment, commanded by Colonel John A. Logan, became pastor in 1884. The church bought the present site of 15th and Logan streets on September 9, 1890, for $900 and a wood building was built in 1893.

Billy Sunday held a revival in Murphysboro in the spring of 1908. Over 100 new members came into the church making a total about 200. In February, 1911, the Lampkin Revival Meeting was held. There were about 250 professions in the campaign and 113 additions to the church.

In 1912 a consolidation was made with the members of the First Baptist Church and the members of the Free Will Baptist which was organized in 1875 by Rev. G.A. Gordon. The consolidation of the two churches formed a membership of approximately 400.

Soon after the consolidation the congregation voted to raise the existing building and put in a basement to handle the fast growing congregation. The church membership continued to grow and the beginners Sunday School class was moved to a house dwelling adjoining the church property. It then became necessary to build an annex for the Junior department of Sunday School.

In 1922 the church, feeling the need for larger quarters and more adequate equipment voted to raise a building fund of $65,000.00 for a new house of worship. The membership had increased to more than 900 members. The church had interim services in the Liberty theater on Walnut street and started construction on a new brick structure at the old site with the cornerstone laying on September 16, 1923. The Rev. H. T. Abbott was pastor during these years and the church was completed in 1925. But before the first service could be held in the new sanctuary a tornado hit Murphysboro on March 18, 1925 destroying the new church as well as killing many of the members.

During the tornado there was a funeral service being held in the basement of the church, but not one person in attendance was injured. The funeral director went up the steps and looked out the door and received a cut on his face. He was the only injury on the site despite the upper part of the building being destroyed. “Come Back Sunday School” was held in a temporary tabernacle until the new church was completed in the summer of 1927. The church building was replaced with the same brick design and the building is still in use today. The church has an educational building annex and spacious parking areas. The latest addition has been an elevator system for the disabled and elderly. Membership today is approximately 492 with an active attendance of approximately 228.

Service Times:


8:15am - Fellowship with Coffee and Donuts
9:00am - Life Groups
9:00am - FBC Kids Worship
10:00am - Worship Service


3:30pm - FBC Kids Club
3:30pm - Crossfire Youth Group
5:00pm - Family Dinner
6:00pm - Bible Study with the Pastor

How to get to First Baptist Church:

From Carbondale and east:

Take Highway 13 west into downtown Murphysboro. Turn right on 15th Street (at the Amstar station) and go north 4 blocks.

From Pinckneyville and north:

Take Highway 127 south until you reach Highway 13. Turn right into downtown Murphysboro. Turn right on 15th Street (at the Amstar station) and go north 4 blocks.

From Gorham and west:

Take Highway 149 east into downtown Murphysboro. Turn left on 15th Street (at the Amstar station) and go north 4 blocks.

Are you looking for purpose, promise, and hope?

Here at First Baptist, we are a family-friendly congregation of people who celebrate life in Jesus together! We're a diverse congregation, spanning all ages and generations. What draws us together is our common faith in Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior, and our commitment to living out the Christian life as the Bible leads us.

Our Mission:

Our Desire at First Baptist Church is to help you find purpose, promise, and hope in a daily relationship with Jesus Christ.

Our Vision:

God has created us for five specific purposes:

To worship Him
To be a part of His family, the Church
To grow to be more like Christ
To serve God by serving others
To share the message of Jesus Christ

Our Values:

As God's people, we hold these core values:

We have JOY in the Lord. Having experienced the joy of knowing Jesus, we strive to reflect that joy in every daily interaction with others.

We are CHRIST-CENTERED. It’s all about Jesus. In every part of our personal lives and our church ministry, the life of Jesus is the basis for our faith, our hope and our actions.

We strive for RELEVANCE in all we do. We strive to make the teachings of the Bible and the activities of the church easily understood and readily applicable to the lives of ordinary people in an ever-changing culture. We are a PRAYING people. We believe in the power and necessity of prayer. In our prayers, we seek to hear God’s voice, to discern God’s will, and we intercede for our church, our community, our world and ourselves on a daily basis.

We practice STEWARDSHIP in every area of life. We recognize God’s ownership of all things, and our role as stewards. We honor God by caring for the things He has entrusted to us, and we return a portion of our income for the health and growth of the church and its ministries.

We believe EVERYONE MATTERS to God and to us. Because all persons are created in God’s image, we treat all persons with respect and love, regardless of differences which seem to separate us.

We SHARE Christ with others. We strive to introduce others to Jesus Christ, so they may develop a saving relationship with Him.

We do everything to the BEST of our abilities. We seek personal excellence in everything we do, so that God is honored and others are attracted to His church.

Meeting Highlights

October 2016 Meeting

November 2016 Meeting

December 2016 Meeting

January 2017 Meeting

February 2017 Meeting

Church Officers

Vicki Ardrey

Gina Hunziker

Helen Payne

Leadership Council

Outreach and Evangelism
Helen Payne, Vicki Ardrey, Elaine Hardwig

Kristy Dunning, Emily Reiman, Chuck Grammer

Children Discipleship
Angie Robinson, Melinda Guthman

Youth Discipleship
Kristy Dunning, Angie Robinson

Adult Discipleship
Vicki Ardrey

Staff Relations and Policies
Vic Koenig

Finance and Stewardship
Helen Payne, Sheila Echols

Building and Grounds
Judy Rawls, Darrell Ewbank, Chuck Grammer, Ed Miller

Judy Rawls, Ed Miller

Special Events
Melinda Guthman, Cathy Porter, Elaine Hardwig

Worship Ministry Team
Vicki Ardrey

College Group Discipleship
Kristy Dunning, Gina Hunziker

Kitchen and Dinners
Gina Hunziker, Cathy Porter

Strategic Action Team
Vicki Ardrey

Nominating Team
Elaine Hardwig, Chuck Grammer

Deacon Care Team

Sue Lynn Johnson

Carol Dunning

Lou Polsgrove

Valerie Lipe

Diane Reader

Bob and Marsha Heiple

Worship Service

The worship service begins at 10:00am and ends at approximately 11:15am. It is a unique time for sharing which provides for a greater sense of family and belonging and in response to the scripture, "Carry each other's burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ," share each other's burdens. The service has contemporary and traditional music to reach a multi-generational church through Praise Team, Choir, and Special Music. Pastor Shaker motivates the congregation to live out the committed, convicted life of a follower of Jesus Christ through his inspiring messages. These messages are also streamed live to the cry room, located directly behind the sanctuary, so that no one will miss the service. Song lyrics, scripture references, and worship are enhanced by the multi-media resources integrated in the service. On Sundays we provide an opportunity for the young people to share their gifts and talents in our classes of all ages.

Nursery care is available and located in the Children's Area. The service is streamed live in the nursery.

The cry room is available for those who wish to take young ones out of the sanctuary without leaving them or missing the service. The service is also streamed live in the cry room.

Special Assistance

There is easily accessed close parking with elevators located nearby. Listening devices are located at the Welcome Center, which is just outside of the sanctuary.

Have questions?

Please feel free to contact the church office.

By Mail:
First Baptist Church
401 North 15th St.
Murphysboro, IL 62966

By Phone:

By Fax:

By E-Mail:

FBC Text Alerts

During the winter months weather conditions have made it necessary for worship and other church events to be cancelled. Sign up today to receive the alert text messages.

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Need something more specific?

Then contact any of our staff:

Shaker Samuel, Senior Pastor
Cell: 618-534-3795
E-Mail: shaker@fbcmurphy.org

Jesse Boudet, Director of Youth, Finance, and Technology
Cell: 618-713-7505
E-Mail: jesse@fbcmurphy.org

Jonathan Hunziker, Webmaster
E-Mail: webmaster@fbcmurphy.org

Ron Rahming, Custodian
E-Mail: ron@fbcmurphy.org

Kathie Grob, Nursery Director
Cell: 618-924-7017
E-Mail: kathie@fbcmurphy.org

Barb Troutman, Children’s Director
Cell: 618-924-7018
E-Mail: barb@fbcmurphy.org

Lynn Brady, Choir Director
Cell: 618-201-7230
E-Mail: lynn@fbcmurphy.org

Traci Hunziker, Pianist
E-Mail: traci@fbcmurphy.org

Karen Rahming, Organist
E-Mail: karen@fbcmurphy.org

Not listed? Contact the church office and we will take care of it.