The new millennium
Rev. Ron Schindel was inducted as new pastor on May 14, 2000. There were 56 people in the congregation for the induction service at which Dr. Paul Pearce (BC Area Minister) was the guest preacher. However, to some, the highlight of 2000 was the renovation of the kitchen and the installation of a dishwasher. Then in 2001, all eight windows in the sanctuary were completely replaced with modern thermally efficient units. The heritage of the church was preserved when the hand-made light fixtures from the Fourth Street building were installed to replace the light fixtures in the sanctuary on Fifth Street, together with four additional matching fixtures made by Dr Arthur Bartsch. He also modified the stained glass windows that were originally installed in the Stanley Street building, so that they would fit in the newly installed windows in the sanctuary.
In 2002 and 2003 the exterior of the church was painted, and in 2004 a baptistry was installed in the sanctuary. The following year (2005) the basement hall received a badly needed face-lift. Also in March 2005, Rev. Ron Schindel announced his intention to resign and retire, but he offered to stay as interim pastor, until a new pastor could be found. The pastoral search committee went to work and in August recommended to the congregation that they invite Rev. Wayne Morgan to be pastor of First Baptist Church. He accepted the invitation and preached his first sermon on December 4, 2005. His Commissioning Service was on January 29, 2006, when Wayne’s father Rev. Lance Morgan preached on Joshua’s Commissioning. Wayne submitted his resignation in July 2007 and preached his last sermon on October 14, 2007. In November 2007, Dennis Webster was appointed Interim Pastor, while the search for a new pastor was conducted. Then in February, 2008, Rev. Bob Roxburgh visted the church monthly, for about six months to guide the membership in a Visioning process prior to actively seeking a new pastor. In May and June 2008, the floor in the Sanctuary was refinished, the ceiling was painted and the lounge and foyer were renovated. July 2008 saw First Baptist Church hosting the BC and Yukon Area Assembly, with the theme “1 Lord, 1 Faith, 1 Church”. That being the 111th year of First Baptist Church in Nelson. The event was deemed to be a great success.
February 2010 saw Dennis resign to take a call in Prince George and the search committee continued the search. In August, Rev. Scott Simpson accepted an invitation from the search committee to preach for a call. That resulted in the congregation unanimously inviting him to be the next Pastor of First Baptist Church. He started as Pastor on September 1, 2010 and was inducted on September 26, 2010. Scott’s induction was conducted by Connie Cristall, representing the BC and Yukon Region of the Canadian Baptists of Western Canada. Rev Ken Siemens preached from Philippians. In September 2012, Cornerstone Children’s Centre was expanded provide after-school care for primary school children. Then in January 2014, Scott submitted his resignation to take a position with the denomination in Calgary. The Reverend George Sears was appointed as interim Pastor while the search committee worked on locating a Pastor to replace Scott.
After an invitation by the search committee to Rev. John Thwaites to preach for a call, the membership unanimously invited him to be the next Pastor. John accepted the invitation and preached his first sermon to a well attended worship service on November 23, 2014, and, he was inducted on January 24, 2015, by Rob Ogilvie, B.C. and Yukon Area Minister for C.B.W.C.