Progress Baptist Church began meeting together in January 2002 at G&B Energy on N.C. 280. “We would go in, move out the gas logs and water heaters, carry in the organ, set up chairs and have service,” said the Rev. Joseph Cox, former pastor of the church.
Before long, the church had out grown the store the store front and moved to a new location at the corner of Banner Farm and School House roads. While the members of the congregation were praying about and looking for property for a permanent site.
There were a lot of dead ends,” Rev. Cox said. “We nearly bought an old Nazarene church in Arden, but that didn’t work out. The next week one of our members saw our current piece of property.”
The nearly five-acre site at 1935 N. Rugby Road was being offered by a private seller. Research was done to make sure zoning would allow a church to be built in that area. The property had been condemned at one time for home development because the soil would not perk for septic systems but the soil changed and it perked for one septic tank. “That’s all we needed,” Rev. Cox said. “It was providence.”
The congregation broke ground for its new building in July 2002 and began building in earnest in October of that year. Every Saturday, members of the congregation met together and worked. Mike Nelson and the men of Carpenter’s Hands at Mud Creek Baptist Church came to help and by March 2004, the building was ready for occupancy.
“It might seem like a long time from October 2002 to March 2004,” Rev. Cox said, “but it was just the congregation doing the work on Saturday’s. The Lord has done great things.”
The congregation held its first service in the new facility in the middle of March 2004.