In the early 1940s, a house boat was converted into a worship sanctuary which could travel up and down the waterways of the Atchafalaya Basin. This vessel, affectionately known as “the Little Brown Church on the Water,” formed the beginning stages of what eventually became Bayou Plaquemine Baptist Church. This mobile meeting place, navigated by missionary Ira Marks, moved through rivers and canals in order to bring the gospel of Jesus Christ to people living along the bayou. Missionaries and members of “the Little Brown Church” would invite community residents aboard to join in worship services, Vacation Bible Schools, and weddings. Some of the founding members of Bayou Plaquemine Baptist Church can still remember the sound of gospel hymns rising up in the warm night air as “the Little Brown Church” moved through the swamp.
In 1941, a mission location was established on land through the help of First Baptist Church of Baton Rouge (Eastland Bible Class) and was called Bayou Plaquemine Mission. A group of Christians who met in this place decided to particularize and formed an independent church on July 28, 1946. This congregation was named Bayou Plaquemine Baptist Church, which remains in existence over 70 years later. Our current church facility is located roughly 7 miles from the town of Plaquemine along the Grand River. We are situated on a stretch of Highway 75 around the corner from Jack Miller’s Landing and across the street from Verret Shipyard.
Bayou Plaquemine Baptist Church (BPBC) has an extensive outreach ministry to families and youth along the bayou, a bus ministry for those in need of transportation, an annual Vacation Bible School, and weekly Sunday School classes, in addition to children’s programs, music programs, and women’s ministry programs throughout the year. We strive by God’s grace to be a pillar and foundation of the truth (1 Tim. 3:15), calling the lost to repentance and faith while also building up believers in the teaching and commandments of Jesus Christ. We are blessed to be in gospel partnership with three other area churches, the “Unity Churches,” which consist of BPBC, First Baptist Church of Plaquemine, First Baptist Church of White Castle, and Bayou Sorrel Baptist Church. We have bi-monthly worship services together and partner in hosting a one-day Bible conference each year.
VIDEO: To watch a video that describes the history of “the Little Brown Church” and early missionary efforts in the Atchafalaya Basin, click here.
(Photo © Louisiana Baptist Foundation)