First Baptist Church (Atlanta)
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|First Baptist Church Atlanta|
|Denomination||Southern Baptist Convention|
|Founder(s)||David Gonto Daniell|
|Division||Georgia Baptist Convention|
|Senior pastor(s)||Charles Stanley|
First Baptist Church (Atlanta), is a megachurch located at 4400 North Peachtree Road at Interstate 285 in Dunwoody, Georgia. It is commonly known as First Baptist Atlanta. It is an evangelical, Christian church, and is a member of the Southern Baptist Convention. Dr. Charles F. Stanley, former President of the Southern Baptist Convention, has been Senior Pastor of the church since 1971.
The church has two Sunday morning services, a Wednesday night prayer meeting, extensive Sunday school, and midweek Christian training programs. Other meetings are held throughout the week. Dr. Stanley typically preaches at both Sunday morning services. The newly renovated sanctuary seats 3,000, excluding the overflow room. In addition to the sanctuary, the church building includes a chapel, a theater, a large youth facility (including a coffee shop, a rock climbing wall, and a gym), dining facilities, a bookstore, rotunda and other spaces typical of megachurches. The church is a theologically conservative congregation, and Dr. Stanley has longtime links to Jerry Falwell, Bill Bright and others in both evangelical and Baptist circles.
Addressing social and spiritual concerns such as parenting, finances, personal crises, emotions and relationships, FBA guides believers through the inerrant word of God for the purpose of personal spiritual growth. Through an applicable reference to God's Word, FBA focuses on prayer, the character of God, fellowship through the Holy Spirit and the Person of Jesus Christ. First Baptist Atlanta continually works to service the needs of believers, followers, and seekers of God's holiness through various missions, ministries, and programs.
First Baptist Church Atlanta began a television and radio ministry in 1972, one year after Dr. Stanley became the senior pastor. It is now known as In Touch Ministries. Together, the teaching of Dr. Stanley and beliefs of FBA are available globally—translated into more than 100 languages via radio, television broadcast, audiotapes, videotapes, CDs, DVDs, pamphlets, books and a monthly devotional magazine, In Touch.
First Baptist was originally located in downtown Atlanta, Georgia. In the late 20th century, a commercial facility was purchased on Atlanta's Interstate 285 and the church relocated to the larger, more accessible property in Dekalb County. The trend of churches relocating adjacent to major interstates and highways is not uncommon in commuter-oriented cities such as Atlanta.