In 1955, the Church Committee of the Potomac Baptist Association decided that a church should be started in the Manassas Park area. Mr. I. J. Breeden gave the land for the church. Rev. Guy C. Heyl of Warrenton was called as our first pastor. The first service was held March 4, 1956 in Yorkshire Fire House and 13 persons joined by letter. Sunday School was started in the following month. Emmanuel Baptist Church was constituted into a Southern Baptist Church in April 1956.
In 1958, ground was broken for our first building. The building was completed enough to move into by the beginning of 1959. Since then Emmanuel has undertaken several building programs, which include the present day facilities and the Family Life Center.
Rev. Heyl retired in March of 1961, and Rev. Charles W. Gibson accepted the call to Emmanuel two months later, coming from Richmond, VA. With a one-year break, Rev. Gibson served until 1971. Later in 1971, Rev. B.R. Yarbrough assumed the pastoral duties until 1977 and returned in 1978 and served until 1984. Dr. James L. Ryan served as pastor from 1977, to 1978. In 1985, Dr. Samuel H. Letson became our pastor and served until 1995. Dr. Rodney Autry accepted the call as pastor in 1996 served until spring of 2010.
Emmanuel has always been a mission-minded church. In the summer of 1961, plans were made to establish a mission in the Loch Lomond area. Loch Lomond Baptist Church was constituted as a Southern Baptist Church 1964. In 1987, plans were taken to establish another mission in the local area. Occoquan River Baptist Church was constituted as a Southern Baptist Church in 1991.
Another mission effort was started in the fall of 1979: Emmanuel Baptist Church Pre-School (Grades K-3 and K-4), which evolved into Emmanuel Christian School. Each year thereafter one or more grades were added. Since the first graduating class in 1986, Emmanuel Christian School has graduated 600+ students, with over 90% going on to college. Emmanuel Christian School is accredited by the Association of Christian Schools International (ACSI).
In February 1997 Emmanuel Baptist Church voted to align with the new State Convention, The Southern Baptist Conservatives of Virginia. Since then Emmanuel Baptist Church has been directly involved in the planting of numerous missions, including Anglo, ethnic, and language. More recently Emmanuel assisted in the purchase of 14 acres of land for our mission, Grace Church of Gainesville. It was constituted into a Southern Baptist Church in 2005. Our thriving Hispanic mission, Iglesia Bautista Hispana Emanuel, meets in our Family Life Center.
Emmanuel’s most recent church plant is IMPACT Church, pastored by our former youth pastor, Pastor Brandon Hembree. It is located in Fairfax County and adds a new dimension to EBC’s outreach to the culture of Northern Virginia. They are currently meeting at Colin Powell Elementary School in Centreville, VA at 10:30 a.m.
Emmanuel is currently being transformed by God’s hand. In the process of refinement, the Word of God is being preached and taught by our Transformational Pastor Dr. Lindsay Sadler and our Worship Pastor Rev. Scott David. It is our prayer that God will give us direction, wisdom, and discernment that we may carry out His purpose for His will to the glory of Jesus Christ.