In 1984 a group of 20-30 believers began meeting for Bible study and prayer in the basement of Skip and Cress Gerringer’s house on Ogden Center Road in Spencerport. In the fall of that year, the group felt led of the Lord to investigate the possibility of planting a church in the area. The American Mission for Opening Churches (AMOC), located in Olcott, New York, was contacted for their assistance.
The General Director of AMOC, Tom Buckley, came to meet with the group, was impressed with their strong desire to start an independent Bible-believing church in Spencerport, and encouraged their efforts. He suggested “Spencerport Bible Church” as a name because it was self explanatory–telling the church’s location and indicating that it based its beliefs on the Bible, God’s inerrant Word. He recommended that the group contact Jim Evans, a pastor who had just finished planting a church in Maine, as a possible founding pastor.
After meeting together, both Jim and the group felt it was God’s will for him to move to Spencerport and work with this group to plant Spencerport Bible Church. In the spring of 1985, Jim, his wife Joan, and two sons moved to Spencerport to begin the work.
The Lord led the group to an old gun shop on Amity Street in the middle of the village, which was in need of a lot of repairs. The owner had just purchased the building and was happy to pay for the material needed if the group did the work. He also promised a very reasonable rent–which was certainly needed at the time.
While still renovating the gun shop, land was being sought on which to build a church building in the future. Prayer and many inquiries led the appointed land-seeker, Skip Gerringer, to the late Mrs. Irving. She eventually decided to sell the parcel of land on which the church is now located.
On May 5, 1985, our first service was held with 85 regulars, visitors, and special guests. Charter Sunday was held on June 23 with 65 present and 43 becoming charter members. That building was used to house services and programs for 3 years.
Bonds were sold in order to hire a contractor to erect the shell of our present building. Monies from the bonds along with designated offerings were used to pay for material, and members of the church did most of the site and inside work on the building. The first service in the new building was held on June 5, 1988.
After serving as missionary pastor for almost four years and overseeing the congregation as it grew into a vital body approximately 135 strong, Jim Evans accepted the position as Assistant Director at AMOC. The church began praying diligently for the Lord’s will in calling their first full-time pastor.
Billy Ross, whom the church had first met when he was the keynote speaker in their first missions conference in 1986, was called to assume the pastorate. Pastor Ross, with his wife and two sons, began his ministry at Spencerport Bible Church on October 9, 1988. Under his ministry the Lord blessed and the congregation grew to approximately 250. In October of 1992, Dan Miller, and his wife Vicki, came to Spencerport Bible Church as its first youth pastor.
Tom Balentine became senior pastor of Spencerport Bible Church on July 6, 1997. With his wife, Sharon, and two of their five children, Lee and Michael. Pastor Tom faithfully served our church for 22 years through preaching, teaching, and counseling ministries.
After Pastor Tom Balentine retired in 2019, his son, Lee Balentine, continued serving as our Preacher, consistently teaching the Bible as we search for a Senior Pastor.
Domenico Danesi became our interim pastor in September of 2022. He and his wife, Leslee have 6 children. Dom is the founder of Rescue and Revive Ministries and has been leading gospel outreach in the Rochester area and beyond with an active mission in Kenya. Dom’s passion for evangelism is evident in his preaching and in his daily life.
Spencerport Bible Church is determined, by God’s grace, that His Word will always go forth from this place. As God grants us additional years of ministry, it is our desire to glorify Him by reaching people with the gospel of Jesus Christ, building up those who come to faith in Christ into spiritually mature disciples, and equipping them for effective Christian service.