Our Story

How it all started...

October 1949 
In October 1949, a newly organized group of people worshiped together for the first time. There were 40 in attendance at the home of L.S. Barron. Together these Christians sang their first hymn, Footsteps of Jesus. This marked the beginning of Friendly Baptist Church.  A short time later, the group began to meet in a store front,
March 1950 
Brother Ewell J. Humphries was soon called as the first pastor. In March 1950, the first building program was implemented and People's National Bank agreed to finance the building. Early in the Fall of 1950 the first sanctuary was built on the corner of Porter and Ferdell streets. In 1953, Bro. Humphries left the church. From then until 1963, Bro. G.H. Bailey, Bro. C. Goss and again Bro. Humphries pastored the church.
By 1957, the church was in need of more room. While planning to expand, a tornado destroyed the original church building. The church met in the Bonner School until a new building could be completed. With the insurance and borrowed money, additional property was bought and a new sanctuary was built on the corner of Porter and Houston streets (This building presently serves as our Fellowship Hall).
In 1963, the church called Bro. Milton Gardner as pastor. The church was at a low ebb; attendance was down in both Sunday School and Church. But the Lord has said "All things are possible to him who believes."
In 1966, the Lord provided a beautiful new sanctuary and eight houses which were used for Sunday School rooms and parking. Sunday School attendance continued to grow reaching 576 by 1976.

Expanding the Vision...

The "Together We Build" program was soon implemented to raise funds for a new Children's Education Building. This facility was completed in 1979. The old sanctuary was then converted into a Fellowship Hall and office space was added. A full size gymnasium was also completed that year.
In 1992, the church called Bro. Dale Perry as pastor. In the years which followed the church saw remarkable revival in the fellowship and outreach.
In 1996, a new Student Ministry Building was completed. In that same year a complete renovation of the auditorium and Children's Education Building was begun and completed in 1997.
The budget doubled between 1992-1999 and in mid-1999 the church voted to begin construction of a 1200 seat auditorium and two story education building. In the summer of 1999, the gymnasium was completely remodeled into a worship center for use during the time of building the new auditorium and services began there in August of 1999.
The new auditorium was officially dedicated in February 2001 and for the first time in several years, the entire church has been meeting in one joint service, at 10 a.m. As of 2003, the average Sunday School attendance of 833 persons and an average worship attendance of 950.
The new Children's Building was officially dedicated in November 2010.
In December of 2012, the church called Bro. Chris Robeson as pastor. During his pastorate, Bro. Chris brought a renewed focus on prayer and missions which led Friendly to support the planting of several mission churches.  His emphasis on evangelism and outreach led to many lives being changed for the Kingdom of God.
In June of 2016, the church called Bro. Pat Alvey as Senior Pastor. Prior to that, he had served at Friendly since 1984 as Associate Pastor and Executive Pastor.  In October, Bro. Steve Lyles was called as Executive Pastor.  Previously, he had served at Friendly as Student Pastor since 2001. Bro. Chad Johnson was called to be Student Pastor also in October. Prior to that, he had served at Friendly as Student Pastor Associate since 2010.   As pastor, Bro. Pat led the church to focus on ministering to the Midtown area of Tyler.  This included life-changing ministries to Moore Middle School, Bell Elementary, and TJC.  Bro. Pat retired in June of 2020.  
In March of 2022, the church called Dr. Dan Lewis as the new Senior Pastor. 

Come Join Us as We Look Towards the Future
of Equipping Believers who will Engage Our Community to Advance God's Kingdom

Join us every Sunday as we gather to worship together at 10:15 am.