Our Beliefs

Cape Charles Baptist Church is a family of faith committed to worship and personal devotion that finds expression in ministry and missions. We want to take the time to answer your questions and provide you with information that can help you decide if this can be your church home. Please take a look at the questions below, and click on the ones you are interested in exploring:

Cape Charles Baptist Church Vision Statement :  In the Streets, Meeting Needs, Sharing Jesus' Love.

Cape Charles Baptist Church Mission Statement: To the Glory of God, as led by the Holy Spirit,  Cape Charles Baptist Church mobilizes the body of Christ to share Jesus' love at strategic locations in communities of the lower Eastern Shore, by leveraging networks to meet needs, break adverse strongholds and establish the tangible presence of God according to His will.                                                                                                    

Who are you?

What’s your agenda? 

What does becoming a church member mean?

Why should I join a church?

What do you offer? 

The Baptist Faith and Message

CCBC History 

Church Constitution and By-Laws (links to PDF document)

Who are you?

When we talk about "the church" we're talking about the members, not the building or the pastor or the committees or other leadership.  The foundation of Christianity is having an individual, personal relationship with Christ.  Once we begin that relationship, we are drawn together with other followers.  That’s God’s plan.  He has important reasons for us to be together and work together.  The church is simply a group of Jesus’ followers gathered together and sharing a common purpose.

The church is a place for both believers and spiritual seekers.  One of the most important functions that the church performs is helping non-believers to understand the sacrifice that Jesus made for all of us, encouraging them in their quest for knowledge and understanding, and affirming their growing faith. The church welcomes any and all to join us in praise and worship, giving the glory to God the Father for the amazing gift He has given us through His son, Jesus Christ.


What's your agenda?

At Cape Charles Baptist Church, we don't have a "hidden agenda". We love to spend time with each other, accomplish good works together, and get to know new people. But our central focus is on a relationship with Jesus Christ. We believe that life is richer and more full of meaning, hope and love when we strive to understand and obey His Word. Experience bears this out. When a person accepts Christ as his personal savior and is empowered by the Holy Spirit, you can see the light in their eyes and the spring in their step. It is an incredible transformation.

Our grandest desire would be to see everyone experience that joy. But we don't use pressure tactics to try and make that happen. God Himself has decreed that if we are to have salvation, we must make that choice to accept His Grace. And if God is leaving it up to each individual to decide, we respect that choice. We simply want everyone to see the joy and true happiness that life with Jesus offers.

As a Christ-centered church, we strive to fulfill the five Biblical purposes* of the church:

  • Fellowship - Fellowship is more than just a feeling of goodwill in a congregation. It is a result of the intimate spiritual relationship that Christians share with God and other believers through their relationship with Jesus Christ. Fellowship doesn't evolve naturally in a community of believers but comes only by the power of God working through and among them.
  • Evangelism - Evangelism is the process of sharing the gospel with the lost and winning them to Christ, thereby enabling them to enter the kingdom of God. It is asking them to repent of their sins, put their faith in Christ for the forgiveness of sins and the gift of eternal life, and to follow Him forever as Lord. Evangelism is the good news spoken by believers and lived out in their lives.
  • Discipleship - Discipleship is a lifelong journey of obedience to Christ that transforms a person's values and behavior and results in ministry in one's home, church and world. Discipling is the process of teaching the new citizens in the kingdom of God to love, trust and obey Him, and to teach them how to win and train others to do the same.
  • Ministry - Ministry is meeting another person's needs in the name of Jesus, expressed as service to people inside the church family and expressed as missions to those outside the church with the resources God provides. This ministry grows out of a transformed and serving life. It is probably the best understood and most faithfully practiced function.
  • Worship - Worship is any activity in which believers experience God in a meaningful, spiritually transforming way. It leads worshipers to a deeper appreciation for God, a better understanding of His ways, and a deeper commitment to Him. Worship brings us face-to-face with our Creator and draws us closer to His image.

If you're a committed Christian already, we invite you to come and join us in worship and in fellowship and in study. If you are a spiritual seeker, we invite you to come and bring your questions. While we may not know all the answers, we will share what we know and help you explore the rest. If you're just curious, come on in, we do love to meet new people!  If you still have questions, you can reach us in person, by telephone, email, pigeon, or smoke signal.

* From "The Kingdom Focused Church", Gene Mims, 2003.  Used by permission.


What does becoming a church member mean?

Before we think about what local church membership should mean, we'd be wise to ask the more basic question: What is it that I join when I join with a local church in membership?

The Church is NOT:

  • a loose affiliation of people who hold roughly the same religious beliefs, no matter what those beliefs might be. You are not joining a religious club when you join a church.
  • a building.  A building is simply a place to meet.  You are not going to an exclusive clubhouse when you go to church.
  • a non-profit organization with a clear vision statement and lucid objectives.  You are not joining an altruistic or philanthropic society when you join a church.

The Church IS:

  • a regular assembly of people who profess and give evidence that they have been saved by God's grace alone, for His glory alone, through faith alone, in Christ alone.
  • a local, living, and loving collection of people who are committed to Christ and committed to each other.
  • a display of God's wisdom and glory (Eph 3:10).
  • a display of counter-cultural, Christ-like love (John 13:35).

The church is a place for both believers and spiritual seekers.  One of the most important functions that the church performs is helping non-believers to understand the sacrifice that Jesus made for all of us, encouraging them in their quest for knowledge and understanding, and affirming their growing faith. The church welcomes any and all to join us in praise and worship, giving the glory to God the Father for the amazing gift He has given us through His son, Jesus Christ.

Church membership, however, is for believers only.  It is not for those who simply give cognitive assent to the gospel.  The Apostle Paul said the church was like a human body (1 Corinthians 12:1-30). The human body is made up of many different parts – and all of the parts are important and needed. When a body is healthy, the parts work together and cooperate.  (Imagine how many body parts are needed for an athlete to perform well!)  It’s the same with the church. Each person is needed. When the church is healthy, the parts work together and cooperate. God has given each person in the church something unique to offer. And the church is complete and whole (and healthy) only when all of the different parts are present and working together.

Church membership signifies a church's corporate endorsement of a person's salvation.

  • If we believe that only genuinely converted Christians are to be members of the local church, then it makes sense to take time to hear people's testimonies and listen for evidences of godly fruit and increasing holiness in their lives.
  • When the church approaches membership in this way, membership can function as the church's corporate witness to the fact that the new member does indeed increasingly display the fruits and characteristics of a genuine Christian.

Church membership signifies an individual commitment to grasp hold of one another in mutual love and discipleship.

  • By identifying ourselves with a particular church, we let the pastors and other members of that local church know that we intend to be committed in attendance, giving, prayer, and service.
  • We increase others' expectations of us in these areas, and we make it known that we are the responsibility of this local church.  We assure the church of our commitment to Christ in serving with them, and we call for their commitment to serve us in love and to encourage us in our discipleship.
  • In short, we enter a covenant relationship with that church and its leadership.

Church membership signifies a regular responsibility that involves people in each other's lives for the purposes of the gospel.

  • Church membership should not be viewed as a loose affiliation useful to members only on occasion.  This is a self-centered way of looking at membership.  It says, "I want to join this club for the benefits that it can offer me.  But as soon as it starts demanding more than I feel I'm receiving, I think I'll start looking around."
  • Church membership is not a set of rights that I purchase with my tithe. It is a set of responsibilities that I commit myself to carrying out, both for and with other members in gospel fellowship, work, and joy.

Church membership signifies an inward love for God and His people.

  • By joining ourselves with God's people in local church membership, we show that we want to covenant with them to help and be helped, encourage and be encouraged, rebuke and be rebuked.  In other words, we show that we want to love God's people, and be loved by them.
  • According to 1 John, this willingness to love God's people is the fundamental indicator of our heart's disposition towards God Himself.  "If someone says "I love God", but hates his brother, he is a liar; for the one who does not love his brother whom he has seen, cannot love God whom he has not seen.  And this commandment we have from Him, that the one who loves God should love his brother also" (1 John 4:20-21).


Why should I join a church?

The simple answer is that we are instructed by Scripture to be holy.  Holy means "set apart" or "consecrated" for a specific purpose.  While we do not find indisputable proof texts for local church membership, we do find plenty of passages that imply formal membership in local assemblies.

  • Paul's reference to "the majority" in  2 Cor 2:6-7 seems to refer to a group commonly recognized as the church's members.
  • The early church kept a list of widows. We know from the widow list mentioned in 1Tim 5:9 that lists of people were kept and tracked.  If widows were listed, it is likely that a list of current members was kept and updated as well.
  • God Himself keeps a list of all believers (Phil 4:3, Rev 21:27).
  • God has always made a clear distinction between His people and the world.  Drawing this distinction was the reason for the ceremonial and civil laws of the Old Covenant - these laws distinguished Israel from the nations surrounding them, as a people set apart to the Lord.  Such clarity of distinction between God's people and the world argues for clarity and specificity on our membership rolls.
  • Paul's formal exclusion of the sinner at Corinth presupposes formal inclusion (1Cor 5:2, 7, 12-13).

The Bible teaches us that we need one another for growth, ministry, mission, and worship.  God has a plan and a purpose for us that we simply cannot accomplish alone.  So in His wisdom, God calls us together with other followers to share life and ministry together.

In the simplest terms:

  1. I need you.
  2. You need me.
  3. There are things that God would have us do that we cannot do by ourselves.
  4. In the process of working together, we grow in maturity as followers.

Special Pictures That Illustrate Our Life Together 

  • Baptism (Matthew 3:13-17, Romans 6:4)
  • The Lord’s Supper (Matthew 26:26-29,1 Corinthians 11:23-28)


What do you offer?

Being a part of a church can be, and should be, an exciting adventure. Through worship, growth, and shared experiences, we grow closer to God and to one another. Churches are not perfect (after all, they are made up of human beings!) – but churches can provide wonderful opportunities for ministry and maturity. God intends for Christians to be vitally connected with a church family. That’s part of His plan for us.

1. Church membership 

A church member is a follower of Jesus who makes a commitment to a particular church family. The primary requirement for a church member is a personal relationship with Christ. Based on that relationship, a person enters into a covenant with a church. The person becomes a part of the family – and the family embraces this new person as a new family member.

2. Opportunities to Enjoy Life Together 

We can cooperate with one another and share our life together 
Followers of Jesus, together in community, are like a team. We need each other and we can support and encourage each other.

I therefore, the prisoner in the Lord, beg you to lead a life worthy of the calling to which you have been called, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love, making every effort to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called to the one hope of your calling, one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all. (Ephesians 4:1-6)

We can pray together 
Prayer is our ongoing conversation with God. Together we can pray with one another and we can pray for one another. We also pray for people who are not yet part of the church.

Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18)

We can study the Bible together 
God has given us the Bible – which gives us instruction and guidance for how to live. The Bible also helps us understand how much God loves us. The best way to understand the Bible is to study it with other followers of Jesus.

All scripture is inspired by God and is useful for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, so that everyone who belongs to God may be proficient, equipped for every good work. (2 Timothy 3:16-17)

We can give together 
Everything that we have belongs to God. He invites us to be “stewards” (managers) of His resources. When we give offerings, we show that we understand that everything we have belongs to God. We give out of gratitude and thanksgiving. The Bible indicates that a tithe (10% of our income) is an appropriate starting point for our giving.

Bring the full tithe into the storehouse, so that there may be food in my house, and thus put me to the test, says the Lord; see if I will not open the windows of heaven for you and pour down for you an overflowing blessing. (Malachi 3:10) 

Each of you must give as you have made up your mind, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. (2 Corinthians 9:7)

We can use our spiritual gifts together 
God has given each one of us unique abilities to use in helping the church and other people. When we use those abilities, we build up the church and assist in God’s work.

Now there are varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit; and there are varieties of services, but the same Lord; and there are varieties of activities, but it is the same God who activates all of them in everyone. To each is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good. (1Corinthians 12:4-7)

Together, we can tell others about Jesus 
God intends for us to tell others about our life with Jesus. The Bible calls this “witness” and it’s simply telling others what Jesus has done for us. As we do that, other people will come to know Jesus and will become part of His church.

(Jesus said) “But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.” (Acts 1:8)

The Baptist Faith and Message

Southern Baptists have prepared a statement of generally held convictions called The Baptist Faith and Message. It serves as a guide to understanding who they are. Copies are available at Southern Baptist churches. The topics here provide only a brief, partial summary. The full text on the issue discussed is also available.

The Scriptures
The Holy Bible was written by men divinely inspired and is God's revelation of Himself to man. It is a perfect treasure of divine instruction. It has God for its author, salvation for its end, and truth, without any mixture of error, for its matter.

There is one and only one living and true God. …The eternal God reveals Himself to us as Father, Son and Holy Spirit, with distinct personal attributes, but without division of nature, essence, or being.

God the Father
God as Father reigns with providential care over His universe, His creatures, and the flow of the stream of human history according to the purposes of His grace. …God is Father in truth to those who become children of God through faith in Jesus Christ.

God the Son
Christ is the eternal Son of God. In His incarnation as Jesus Christ, He was conceived of the Holy Spirit and born of the virgin Mary. …He honored the divine law by His personal obedience, and in His death on the cross, He made provision for the redemption of men from sin.

God the Holy Spirit
The Holy Spirit is the Spirit of God. …He exalts Christ. He convicts of sin, of righteousness and of judgment. …He enlightens and empowers the believer and the church in worship, evangelism, and service.

Man was created by the special act of God, in His own image, and is the crowning work of His creation. …By his free choice man sinned against God and brought sin into the human race. … The sacredness of human personality is evident in that God created man in His own image, and in that Christ died for man; therefore every man possesses dignity and is worthy of respect and Christian love.

Salvation involves the redemption of the whole man, and is offered freely to all who accept Jesus Christ as Lord and Saviour, who by His own blood obtained eternal redemption for the believer. In its broadest sense salvation includes regeneration, sanctification, and glorification.

God's Purpose of Grace
Election is the gracious purpose of God, according to which He regenerates, sanctifies, and glorifies sinners. …All true believers endure to the end. Those whom God has accepted in Christ, and sanctified by His Spirit will never fall away from the state of grace, but shall persevere to the end.

The Church
A New Testament church of the Lord Jesus Christ is a local body of baptized believers who are associated by covenant in the faith and fellowship of the gospel…and seeking to extend the gospel to the ends of the earth. …This church is an autonomous body. …The New Testament speaks also of the church as the body of Christ, which includes all of the redeemed of all the ages.

Baptism & the Lord\'s Supper
Christian baptism is the immersion of a believer in water. …It is an act of obedience symbolizing the believer's faith in a crucified, buried, and risen Saviour, the believer's death to sin, the burial of the life, and the resurrection to walk in newness of life in Christ Jesus.

The Lord's Supper is a symbolic act of obedience whereby members … memorialize the death of the Redeemer and anticipate His second coming.

The Lord's Day
The first day of the week is the Lord's Day. …It commemorates the resurrection of Christ from the dead and should be employed in exercises of worship and spiritual devotion.

Last Things
God, in His own time and in His own way, will bring the world to its appropriate end. …Jesus Christ will return personally and visibly…the dead will be raised; and Christ will judge all men in righteousness. The unrighteous will be consigned to Hell. …The righteous… will receive their reward and will dwell forever in Heaven with the Lord.

Evangelism & Missions
It is the duty and privilege of every follower of Christ and every church of the Lord Jesus Christ to endeavor to make disciples of all nations … to seek constantly to win the lost to Christ by personal effort.

The cause of education in the Kingdom of Christ is co-ordinate with the causes of missions and general benevolence … there should be a proper balance between academic freedom and academic responsibility. …The freedom of a teacher in a Christian school, college, or seminary is limited by the pre-eminence of Jesus Christ, by the authoritative nature of the Scriptures, and by the distinct purpose for which the school exists.

God is the source of all blessings, temporal and spiritual; all that we have and are we owe to Him. Christians have a spiritual debtorship to the whole world, a holy trusteeship in the gospel, and a binding stewardship in their possessions. They are therefore under obligation to serve Him with their time, talents, and material possessions.

Christ\'s people should … organize such associations and conventions as may best secure cooperation for the great objects of the Kingdom of God. Such organizations have no authority over one another or over the churches. …Cooperation is desirable between the various Christian denominations.

The Christian & the Social Order
Every Christian is under obligation to seek to make the will of Christ supreme in his own life and in human society. ... The Christian should oppose in the spirit of Christ every form of greed, selfishness, and vice.

Religious Liberty
Church and state should be separate. The state owes to every church protection and full freedom in the pursuit of its spiritual ends. …A free church in a free state is the Christian ideal.

God has ordained the family as the foundational institution of human society. …Marriage is the unity of one man and one woman in covenant commitment for a lifetime. …The husband and wife are of equal worth before God, since both are created in God's image. The marriage relationship models the way God relates to His people. …Children, from the moment of conception, are a blessing and heritage from the Lord.


CCBC History

For over 100 years, Cape Charles Baptist Church has served the local communities of Cape Charles, Northampton County, and the Eastern Shore. Rich in history, but with a message as cogent for the world today as when it was first brought forward over 2,000 years ago, Cape Charles Baptist strives to provide an environment where believers can learn and grow in fellowship with our Lord Jesus Christ, and where spiritual seekers can discover what it means to follow Him. Cape Charles Baptist Church is a family of faith committed to worship and personal devotion that finds expression in ministry and missions.

The impact of our church reaches far beyond the Eastern Shore. Our church has been blessed by having four of its young people dedicate their lives to the ministry. Mrs. Gordon Bloxom was State President of the WMU, and both she and Mrs. Estelle Cassidy served as Superintendant of the Accomack WMU. We were also the first church to invite migrant workers to meet in our building. They held Bible School and worship services for several years. Several made confessions of faith and were baptized. Mrs. Estelle Cassidy started the migrant ministry on the shore and inspired migrant ministries throughout Virginia.

  Historical Dates in the History of Our Church

  1887 The first Baptist service was held at Kellam's Hall. The preacher was Rev. James Hope, the father of Mrs. Conrad Grimmer.
  1889 The first church organized with 12 members. A three room building was built on the corner of Randolph and Plum (present location). The Able brothers of the Baltimore Sun furnished the money for this building.
  1890 The Cape Charles Baptist Church was admitted to the Accomack Association. It shared pastors with the Eastville and Lower Northampton churches.
  1892 The Sunday School had an enrollment of 45.
  1895 Rev. J. R. Jones became pastor of the 30 member church.
  1896 The first hymnals were purchased for the church.
  1899 The first constitution and by-laws were adopted.
  1902 A great storm blew down the church, but construction began with a loan from the Northern Baptist Convention. It was built with a stick style roof and cross supports of the bell tower typical of church architecture in the 1880's.
  1904 The envelope system was accepted by the church. Rev. J. W. Hundley became pastor and the membership grew to 61.
  1909 Women members join the WMU (Women's Missionary Union) with Miss Orelia Williams as president.
  1913 The first wedding in the church was conducted when Mr. C. C. Andrews married Miss Maggie Charnock.
  1920 The church became a separate pastorate after sharing pastors with Cheriton, Lower Northampton, and Eastville. The parsonage on Tazewell Ave. was purchased for $4,750.
  1921 The total membership was 194.
  1922 Sunday School enrollment reached 228, and was still held in three rooms.
  1924-1935 Under the pastorate of Dutch Vough, the church paid off the debt on the church and the parsonage and started a Bible School.
  1938 The first service held in the church with the young people in charge.
  1941 Four deaconesses were elected to the church.
  1947   Clarence P. Moore was licensed to preach.
  1949 William Wall was licensed to preach.
  1952 On April 6, groundbreaking was held for the construction of the Sunday School building. Unsolicited gifts were received from two Jews, a Negro Woman, the AME church, and the colored boys on one of the ferries. The first interracial committee met in the church (6 white women and 5 negro women).
  1953 Members Norman Griffith and Charles Carson were instrumental in securing financing from Home Beneficial Life Insurance Co. for the Sunday School building. On July 26, the Sunday School building was dedicated.
  1955 A full church was present at the homecoming.
  1956 The Hammond organ was installed. The church opened doors to migrant workers among the Puerto Rican and Mexican migrants. Dr. Hemming preached.
  1959 Cape Charles WMU celebrated its 50th Anniversary.
  1975-1976 The brick veneer was added to the church.
  1976 H. Eddie Brooks, Jr. was ordained.
  1983 Patrician K. McFaden was ordained.
  1998 John Robertson was ordained.
  2000 Russell Goodrich was licensed to preach and ordained the same year.


  Pastors of the Cape Charles Baptist Church


  1889-1890 Rev. J.W. Turner
  1892 P.H. Purnell
  1895-1896 Rev. L. R Jones
  1896-1897 Rev. L.D. Craddock
  1898-1899 Rev. J. W. Reems
  1900-1901 Rev. R H. Purnell
  1901-1904 Rev. W. B. Daughtery
  1904-1908 Rev. John W. Hundley
  1909-1913 Rev. W. C. Foster
  1913-1919 Rev. J. M. Dunaway
  1920-1923 Rev. C. M. Billings
  1924-1935 Rev. Glen C. Vought
  1936 Rev. George M. Kissinger III
  1937-1941 Rev. J. E. Foster
  1941-1942 Rev. Edgar L. Patton
  1943-1945 Rev. R. Carter Ransome
  1945-1948 Rev W. S. Norman
  1948-1957 Dr. H. H. Heming
  1957-1961 Rev. Claude Gatling
  1961-1967 Rev. William Alford
  1970-1975 Rev. Scott Mears
  1975-1976 Rev. Ralph Fowler
  1977-1979 Rev. Alvin Ellis
  1981-1984 Rev. Dennis Campbell
  1984-1986 Rev. Danny Poyner
  1987 (interim) Rev. Charles Colonna
  1988-1992 Rev. Bill Haley
  1992-1994 Rev. Andrew Barton
  1995-1997 Rev. Kevin Daughdrill
  1998-1999 Rev. John Robertson
  1999-2000 (interim) Rev. C. Alan Hogge
  2000-present Rev. Russell Goodrich


Members of this Church Who Dedicated Their Lives to Christian Ministry:

Rev. William Wall

Rev. H. Edward Brooks, Jr.

Rev. Clarence Moore

Rev. Patricia K. McFaden


In Missionary Service, a Former Member of our Sunday School:

Laura Lou Suderno Gray


  August 2020  
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