As we walk through the halls of our 95 years of church history, we thank God for our past and are excited by the future God has in store for the Shiloh Community Church Family.
William M. Fisher, a vibrant young man and Deacon of the Pilgrim Baptist Church in East St. Louis, Illinois was called to the ministry in 1915. The Fisher family, (Rev. Fisher, his wife, Lena and their four children moved to Kansas City, Kansas in 1917. There, they united with the First Baptist Church where Rev. W.A. Bowen was Pastor. Rev. Fisher joined the Young Ministers Alliance, a group of ministers who met once a month to fellowship and expound the Holy Scriptures.
Rev. Fisher had a vision and was led by the Spirit to a section of Kansas City called the West Bottoms. Through the Holy Spirit, he saw a need in this area for evangelism and spreading the Word of God. Inspired by this vision, Rev. Fisher, along with other missionaries, began a door-to-door evangelism program in the West Bottoms. A prayer band was formed. This dedicated group of prayer warriors penetrated the West Bottoms, ministering and praying for God’s people. The fruits of their labor yielded, P.J. and Rosalee Gahiggins, Mary Washington, Theodore R. Charles and many others. This group of people, inspired by Rev Fisher and his dedication and love for the Gospel, asked Rev. Fisher to teach Sunday School lessons and preach the Gospel. Rev. Fisher was elated at their request and encouraged by the earnest and sincere desires of these new converts. After consulting his Pastor, Rev. Fisher was led to organize a church and to continue to minister to the new Christians.
On Sunday, February 15, 1920, the first Sunday School lesson entitled "Peter and Cornelius" (Acts 10:30-48) was taught by Rev. Fisher to the new Christians. The response to the Word of the Lord was electrifying.
While purposing in his heart to carry out the desires of the new converts, and following the lead of the Holy spirit, Rev. Fisher began to take the necessary steps to organize a church. Rev. Fisher discovered there wasn’t a Baptist church located in the West Bottoms. As a witness to the vision, Rev. Fisher saw the need for a spirited revival in the community.
A call, an answer, and a need –thus the Shiloh Missionary Baptist Church was born and organized on March 20, 1920 by the following clergymen: Rev W.A. Bowen, B.B. Jackson, D.A Holmes, R.J. Richardson, and George McNeal. Rev. William M. Fisher was named Pastor. All auxiliaries were inaugurated during the year 1920 with the exception of the Young Adult Choir.
The first home of Shiloh Missionary Baptist Church was on North James Street in the West Bottoms of Kansas City, Kansas. Many souls were saved and church membership began to flourish.
Geographical complications and industrial development caused feasibility difficulties thus the Shiloh Baptist Church relocated to Central Street (later Fowler Street) in the West Bottoms area in the early 1920’s. Facing additional issues, the Church was forced once again to move to Diggs Hall, which was on the Westside of Kansas City, KS (3rd & Washington Blvd.) Shiloh spent several years at their storefront location while planning to build a new edifice.
In 1942, the location at 2213 N. 3rd Street was purchased and construction began on the new home of Shiloh. The basement was completed and services were conducted in the lower level for a number of years. While working on the upper interior of the church, Rev. Fisher was called from labor to reward on July 18, 1959, leaving a portion of the sanctuary incomplete. Rev. Fisher was a faithful shepherd of Shiloh Missionary Baptist Church for 39 years (1920-1959).
After the death of Rev. Fisher, Rev. George Davis was elected Pastor on January 26, 1960. Rev. Davis served as Pastor until October 8, 1960. For a very short period, the pulpit was vacant and worship services were conducted by Rev. T.R. Charles and Rev. John Austin.
On January 20, 1961, Rev. Calvin Ruffin was elected Pastor. He delivered his first sermon at Shiloh on Sunday, February 5, 1961. Rev. Ruffin served Shiloh until September 27, 1970.
On December 8, 1970, Rev. L. B. Kelly of North Little Rock, Arkansas was elected Pastor. The growth of Shiloh again flourished. Rev. Kelly resigned in August, 1978.
The pulpit remained vacant until January 29, 1979 when Rev, Steve E. Ray accepted the call to Pastor. Under his leadership, many souls were saved, outreach programs implemented and an album of the Shiloh Church was produced. Rev. Ray was a faithful, dedicated and hard working shepherd of the church until his death on April 27, 1988.
After the death of Rev. Steve E. Ray the pulpit was conducted by the Assistant Pastor Rev. Marion E. Ray, Jr. During that time the Church body began to unite in both unity and spirit. On September 4, 1988, Rev. Marion E. Ray Jr. accepted the call to Pastor. Praise the Lord, progress continued! A revived spiritual awakening is included in the ministry here at Shiloh under the leadership of Rev. Marion E. Ray Jr.
In 2004, God gave Pastor Ray a vision to move this ministry to a new location in the metropolitan area. It was in July of 2007 that God made it possible for Shiloh Missionary Baptist Church to move into its present location at 13622 W 62nd Street in Shawnee, Kansas. By God's grace, on Saturday, September 15, 2007 we had our Ribbon Cutting and Dedication Service. Shiloh Missionary Baptist Church was officially changed to Shiloh Community Church.
Today we are in a new and exciting point in the history of Shiloh. We believe God has centrally located us in the Shawnee area to reach the lost, to revitalize this community and inspire people of all color to come to the knowledge of Jesus Christ.
We are excited about what God has done and what he is going to do with this ministry.
Shiloh Community Church