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Our Church History


Cornerstone Baptist Church began in January 1993 as the dream of a few men and women who were meeting and praying each week in homes. The Bible Study Group then began meeting in the Chapel of Kirksey Funeral Home in Valdese, North Carolina. As the numbers grew, services were moved to a vacant grocery store on Lovelady Road in February 1993. After long hours of hard labor, the group renovated the building into a worship center and place for bible study.

On June 6, 1993, Cornerstone Baptist Church was organized with 60 charter members and ten children. The interim pastor was Reverend Lawrence Carroll.

Reverend Rob Evans was called as Cornerstones first full-time pastor in November 1993. He was pastor for one year and left to further his education and Reverend Lawrence Carroll returned as interim.

In February 1996, Reverend Bill Abrams was called initially as interim pastor and in October he was asked to serve as the Senior Pastor; serving Cornerstone for seven years.

In November 1996 the church selected a Building Committee and purchased 13 acres of property off Highway 70 East in Valdese. The property was sold in 1999 to assist with the purchase of 20 acres of land on Lovelady Road. The land has been paid in full. In May 1998, the church voted to conduct a Capital Fund Raising Campaign called, Together We Build.

Through many prayers, determination and guidance from God, Pastor Abrams contacted Carpenters for Christ in September 2000. The leaders of Carpenters for Christ met with Cornerstone in December 2000. Cornerstone was notified that they had been selected as the 20th church to be built by the Carpenters for Christ, and was the first to be built in North Carolina.

The Carpenters arrived on Wednesday, June 6, 2001 and began their work on Thursday, June 7 with a total of 139 Carpenters representing 13 states. They worked non-stop through Thursday, June 14, 2001 with much help from Cornerstone members and the community. By the time the Carpenters left, there was an 8,700 square foot building with exterior walls and a roof in place on the 20 acres of Lovelady Road property. The remainder of 2001, the Building Committee continued to lead the church in completing the first unit building.

The church family moved into the new facility on February 24, 2002 and Cornerstone Baptist Church was dedicated to God on March 17, 2002 in a special service with more than 300 people in attendance. In appreciation to God and the Carpenters for Christ, Cornerstone continues to send a team of hardworking men to help build churches each year.

In August 2003 Pastor Abrams followed God’s calling to a church in eastern North Carolina. A Pastor Search Committee was formed. Reverend Bob Shepherd served as interim pastor for one year. Pastor Shepherd spiritually led the church through bible study and sharing Gods word.

The Search Committee continued to seek a pastor and Reverend Ande Myers was affirmed by the church on October 24, 2004. Pastor Ande and his wife Michelle served faithfully at Cornerstone until May 2012 when they followed Gods call to Williamsburg, Kentucky. Once again, Reverend Bob Shepherd prayerfully returned to lead until a new pastor was selected.

In 2007 a Picnic Shelter was constructed and dedicated in loving memory of June Franklin by her family, extended family and friends.

In March 2013, Reverend Eddie Graves was selected as the new pastor of Cornerstone, being voted in as our fourth full-time pastor. Rev. Graves and his wife Marilyn relocated from Baltimore, Maryland, and having previously served in the mission field in Chile.

Cornerstone has always had a heart for missions. The church has found great joy in serving the Lord through local, national and international missions. Some of the mission projects include: Little Samaritan Mission Face of a Child, Prayer Shawl Ministry, Angel Food Ministry, Samaritans Purse Shoebox Ministry, and the Annual Toy Store (toys and the love of God shared with needy children and their families each Christmas). There are many other local needs met through the mission program at Cornerstone, including the Food Bank at the Presbyterian Church in Valdese, book bag/School Supply Ministry, Men of Recovery Program, and Draughn High School faculty recognition.

In 2014, Cornerstone voted to set aside the 5th Sundays for a special offering which will be used to lower the church’s debt. On March 14-15, 2015 Cornerstone was led by Reverend Francis Smith in a renewal weekend. The Theme was Repentance-The Posture of Grace. In 2015, we had the completion and dedication of our new Cornerstone Church sign. Through a generous donation Cornerstone was able to purchase a new baby grand piano. It too was dedicated on June 7th of 2015.

August 27, 2017 Ed and Marilyn Graves were lead to move to Virginia and a new search committee was formed. Dr. David Smith came on October 1, 2017 as our interim pastor. April 29, 2018 Cornerstone paid off our building fund DEBT and vote Dr. Smith as our Pastor. A deacon family ministry plan was implemented to serve our church families.

Dr. Smith faithful served Cornerstone until May 5, 2019. We are in progress of forming a new search committee.

Whereas, this brief summary of the history of Cornerstone Baptist Church is a living testimony to the goodness and many blessings of God, and therefore, be it resolved that we come this first Sunday in June celebrate our Anniversary of Cornerstone Baptist Church, by giving thanks to God the Father for everything in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ. (Ephesians 5:20). To God be the glory, great things He has done! Amen!




Copyright © Cornerstone Baptist Church, Valdese, NC, 2002 - 2019


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