A church called home

By Martha Frost: QCS staff

The First Baptist Church at Logan celebrated its 100th anniversary recently with a program that was a year in the planning, according to Centennial Chairman Sandy Charles.

The celebration included words from the current pastor, Steve Kulback Jr., and church historian, Lester Parrish, plus hymns and a good old-fashioned church luncheon.

Pastor Kulback credits the success and longevity of the church to God and to “the vision and faithfulness of the people in the past” — the men and women who loved the church and dedicated themselves to its work, as he describes them in the church history booklet.

As the First Baptist Church members at Logan look back on 100 years of history, they are also looking forward, according to Mary Caye Judd, editor of the church history.

She summed it up in the booklet’s last paragraph:
“God has been faithful to this church body for 100 years now.
He has blessed us with His love, His guidance and, most important, His presence with us. We look forward to seeing what He will do here in the next hundred years.”

So while working on plans for a fall carnival of games, food and costumes that was held Halloween weekend for community youth, church members were already looking forward to Christmas activities — like filling empty shoe boxes with necessities and toys for the world’s needy children and practicing their Christmas cantata “When Love Came Down.”

The members of the Logan Baptist Church are no strangers to work. Two of them said they recently returned from Slidell, La., at the north shore of Lake Pontchartrain, where they helped man a tent called the New Mexico Baptist Disaster Kitchen. Most a propos, a recent Sunday sermon was entitled “Conscientious Christian Employees.” Pastor Kulback stressed in his sermon that work should not be a dreaded four-letter word or just a means to achieving a beneficial style of living.

“Some people — when they work, they don’t work — they play at work and work at play,” Kulback said in the sermon. “Work should be what defines you, what gives your life purpose and meaning — it should be your mission,” he told his congregation as he challenged them to work “obediently, completely, respectfully, eagerly, excellently, diligently, humbly and spiritually” — yes, even for a difficult boss.

Logan Baptists Kenneth and Betty Terry certainly must have worked in the eight ways their pastor described as they helped feed 12,000 Katrina victims every day. The couple even gave a presentation documenting their disaster relief experiences during the Sunday morning services at the San Jon Baptist Church.

Betty Terry said they are hoping to stir interest in this particular ministry and are planning a disaster relief training session soon for anyone interested.

About his own work and his own boss, Pastor Kulback said, “When people ask me who my boss is, I just look up.”

Kulback said pastoring the Logan Baptist Church has been a family affair. His wife, Colleen, sings, plays the keyboard and serves the church as its choral/youth minister. One of their three kids, son Colton, plays the steel guitar and is practicing on the bright red drum set that sits at the front of the church auditorium.

Kulback and his family have been with the church since 1999. He is the 48th pastor of the Logan church and previously served as youth minister with Rev. Bob Miller at the First Baptist Church in Tucumcari.

The membership directory explains Logan has had so many pastors, averaging one every two years, because it’s a small church and many of the pastors were first-timers who were attending Eastern New Mexico University.

Church history

1905 — Missionary Baptist Church was established on Sept. 7 and first met in a one-room schoolhouse.
1906 — The church got its present name, the First Baptist Church of Logan, New Mexico.
1910 — The first church building was completed and was shared with the Logan Methodist Church on alternate Sundays.
1936 — The Methodists went out on their own.
1977 — A 5,700 square foot education building was dedicated on Sept. 18.
1980 — The old church building was removed to make way for a new auditorium.
1981 — The new auditorium was finished.
2004 — More education space was added.
2005 — The church celebrated its centennial on Sept. 11.

Source: Logan Baptist Church history booklet. For information, the church can be contacted at P.O. Box 382, 601 Armijo St., Logan, NM 88426 or by calling 487-2232.