In the first years of Southland, many sacrifices were made to ensure that this young church was going to grow and move forward towards the Lord. The people gave of their time and resources to serve the Lord in church. Without the labor of the early group that the Lord had formed, the young church would have struggled for years. Those early members of Southland were faithful in their tithes and offering, witnessing, inviting others, service in a vast variety of ministries and their attendance week after week.
Each week as the church came together, the Word of God was proclaimed, songs of praise were lifted and a sense of excitement filled each worship experience. The preaching declared the gospel of Christ, biblical doctrine, hope for the hopeless, and a vision of what God wanted to do with this new body of believers.
Looking back we are thankful for the vision that pastors Gerald and Galen Berry had to plant this church and for the many faithful people that had a part in the founding of Southland Baptist Church. In July 2003, Pastor Galen berry moved to Salina, Kansas to assume the pastorate of Ray Avenue Baptist Church. IN May of 2004, the church issued a call to Pastor Gary L. Berry as Senior Pastor. In July 2004, he moved to Belton, Missouri from Desert Springs Baptist Church in Tucson, Arizona, a church which he planted, and assumed the duties at Southland Baptist. Gerald Berry continued to serve on staff until the age of 82 when the Lord took him home in November of 2020. He served along with both of his sons at Southland Baptist.
Now, years later, we find that Southland Baptist Church has moved its location twice and is now located in a prime location with 10 acres of land, a well-supplied church plant, a house and so much that the Lord has blessed us with.
Out of all the assets that the Lord has gifted the church with, the greatest assets have always been its people. If the measure of a church is its buildings, vehicles, equipment, and accounts the measuring rod is wrong. The people of Southland Baptist are our true treasures. Many of our people faithfully serve in two or more areas of ministry week after week. Each week many of our people consistently bring their tithes, offerings, and faith promise missions for the support of the church and the more than 50 missions projects, including being the sending church for the Arnold Belasco family to Spain and Charlie Joyce to Burkina Faso in Africa. Our people selflessly serve in the church and often there is no mention of their service, yet they serve the Lord with gladness and trust the Lord to gain the increase.
In the years to come, we should never lose sight of where we came from and why we are where we are. Southland Baptist Church has a bright future and great things are ahead for us. In the present and future let's remember that the Lord's priority of reaching PEOPLE should always be Southland's most important focus and main concern.
1992 - Present
Southland Baptist Church started with the quiet voice of the Lord speaking to two men about planting a new church in a small, yet growing, community of Kansas City, Missouri. The fruit of that vision sprang forth with the first service on a cold, icy Sunday in December 1992. Thousands of calls and visits were made leading up to that first service and all the hard work was rewarded with an attendance of 122 that first Sunday. From that first service at the old Air Force chapel on the campus of Calvary Bible College to the merge with Grace Baptist Church in October of 1994, the Lord guided each step of this young church.