On the 12th of August, 1943, a group of
people from Bethlehem Baptist Church met to consider and
discuss the establishment of a Baptist General Conference
church in the western Minneapolis suburb of St. Louis Park.
A decision was made to start the
Park Baptist Church and to
find a temporary location to house the new work. An old
empty tavern was located [the former Swan tavern at
Excelsior Blvd. at Natchez], and with great effort was
cleaned up and made presentable for worship. Later this
property was purchased for $62,000.00 plus $500.00 for an
adjoining lot. Four families were responsible for the humble
beginning. The first parsonage was built at 4624 Vallacher,
a block from the temporary site, in 1945.
Thirty-two (32) people attended the first meeting of this
new church on Sunday, October 10, 1943. Dedication was held
on October 31st of the same year. This church was officially
organized as a sister church by a Council of Twin City
Conference Churches on April 3, 1944. The charter membership
was twenty-two (22).
During September of 1946, several lots were purchased on
Vernon Avenue and 41st Street. In November of that same
year, two more lots were added. A basement church was built
on these lots, which was dedicated on June 6th, 1948. In the
fall of 1952, work began on the super structure of the
church. Members of the church worked four days a week to do
the finish work, such as painting, installing woodwork, and
laying tile. The new church was dedicated on November 22,
1953 with Mayor Hurd on hand for the festivities. Membership
was 120. The building was variously known as 4093/4095/4097
Vernon Ave. Its official address now, however, is 5450 W.
Park Baptist merged with the First Baptist Church of Hopkins
in October 1969 to become Cross of Glory Baptist Church.
Cross of Glory met at the Park Baptist location until
September of 1970 when that site was sold and the church
moved to the First Baptist Church of Hopkins site. Cross of
Glory’s website is
The new owner of the property in 1970 was the First
Foursquare Gospel Church.
From 1977 to 1996, the building
was the home of the Evangelic Missionary Fellowship and
Messianic Jewish Congregation/Full Gospel Temple/Faith
Assembly of God.
This information comes from a variety of sources: newspapers, books, yearbooks, phone directories, interviews, etc. Given the varied sources, we cannot guarantee that all of this information is correct, and welcome any additions and corrections. Please contact us with your contributions and comments.