Part of what makes Calvary such a unique institution in the Denver Metro area is our rich history.
The highlights of our storied (and continuing!) journey include:
Calvary Baptist Church of Denver is founded and incorporated by Pastor Yerkes (after leaving his role as Assistant Pastor of First Baptist Church of Denver). Thirty-two people withdraw from First Baptist and join nine Baptists in the area to constitute the first 41 members, and the church is located at the corner of 27th and Stout Streets.
Calvary moves to its second location on the northwest corner of Ogden Street and E. 24th Ave. The church faces a financial crisis in 1894, and some of our members generously sell their goods (art, hardware, livestock) to help save the church. Many of Calvary’s female members, who are earning $1 a day in their work, work overtime to earn extra money to donate to Calvary’s cause, as well. Calvary lives on.
Calvary moves to 16th Street and Downing, and membership grows—by 1935, Calvary has more than 1,000 members and the choir has 85 voices by 1941. In this same year, the “Calvary Church Bulletin” becomes The Messenger, with the idea that an angel is defined as a ‘messenger of God.’
Calvary’s membership reaches 1,500, and the church gives more than $360,000 to important causes.
Acting pastor Pastor Rosenberger creates the prayer line; he begins receiving 500 phone calls a day.
Calvary and Temple Emanuel of Denver join hands and hearts, and break bread together at the annual Brotherhood Inter-Faith Dinner at Temple Emanuel. The Denver Post reports that the attendance of 912 is the largest ever assembled in the synagogue. This dinner leads to a pulpit exchange and interfaith relationship.
The groundbreaking of the Hampden and Monaco location begins.
The first worship service is conducted in the new building at Hampden and Monaco.
The first Sunday of the month is designated for members and guests of Calvary to bring canned goods to donate to the Denver Inner City Parish.
The first “Launch Sunday” (now “Gathering Sunday”) takes place at Calvary, and education and missions continue to grow.
The Calvary east wing, and chapel, are dedicated.
“The history of Calvary Baptist Church is not a saga of repeated successes but the record of a congregation with a mission. The past should be a teacher for the future. The past helped to “Spread Our Wings” – the future beckons “And Now To Fly”
Rev. Mary Hulst is hired as Calvary’s first-ever female pastor.
Rev. Brian Henderson begins his four-year tenure as Calvary’s senior pastor. He is credited with spearheading, and following through, with significant renovations of narthex, boardroom, library, office, restrooms, fellowship hall, hallway, artwork, and sound/lights. He also is remembered for leading the congregation through conversations to become welcoming and affirming, after which the congregation voted on Dec. 4, 2011, to officially become welcoming and affirming.
Calvary’s second female pastor in its history is hired: Rev. Anne Jernberg.