Bogalusa’s First Pentecostal Church continues growth in mission

Published 8:35 am Monday, August 25, 2014

First Pentecostal Church of Bogalusa traces its history from the early 1900s.

In 1926 land was donated by the Great Southern Lumber Company under the direction of General Manager William H. Sullivan. Once again, this man’s vision has continued to impact the lives of those living in Bogalusa today.

A small and humble band of believers led by the Rev. Martin Mizell held the first services at 1040 Avenue E. Many godly men continued the work of the Lord at this location, and the congregation grew in number and fervor.

When the time came for a move and expansion from the facility on Avenue E, a building committee was established. Under the direction of the Rev. J.W. Magee First Pentecostal began to plan for a beautiful and functional building to meet the needs of its growing congregation.

In 1974 the Rev. Virgil Cox came to lead the congregation. Much hard work and sacrifice from the church’s congregation and leaders paid off when the land on Louisiana Highway 21 South was purchased for the location of the new church campus.

The property at 14532 Highway 21 South was raw land and had to be cleared and prepared for the building to commence. Dreams of what the Lord would do with this property began to take shape in the minds of this tight-knit congregation.

Pastors came and went, but the people of First Pentecostal never lost their vision for a place where more people could learn of the good news of Jesus Christ. From 1986 through 1997 the church grew and prospered under the leadership of the Rev. Kevin Cox. The educational building was completed in 1990.

In 1997 Cox was elected district secretary and moved to Tioga, La. Again the congregation had to start over with a new pastor.

The Rev. Jonathan Suber was elected pastor and caught the congregation’s vision for a new sanctuary. After 21 years of praying and planning, construction on the new church was begun. The sanctuary where the congregation now worships was completed in1999.

The Rev. Travis Houston has been leading this congregation since 2008. Sunday services are held at both 10 a.m. and 6 p.m. Wednesday evening services begin at 7 p.m. First Pentecostal offers a variety of ministries to meet the needs of people of all ages and welcomes visitors.

According to the church’s website, “First Pentecostal is all about people — people from different backgrounds who have encountered Jesus Christ and are learning to live a new life for the glory of God.”

Said Travis, “Perhaps you’re searching for some answers to life’s perplexing questions or maybe even looking for a church home. Whoever you are or whatever your situation, we invite you to get to know us and discover how God is being exalted in the midst of our local church. Please let us know how we can serve you.”

First Pentecostal Church of Bogalusa began in a small wood frame building and is still growing in its mission of serving for the glory of God.