Below you’ll find stories of Laura Baptist’s beginnings. Since then, week after week and year after year, people have gathered to worship and pray.

The Word of God has been preached. Men and women have been joined in marriage. Deeply loved church and community members have been honoured at their funerals. 

Over the years, many people of all ages have given their lives to Christ, been baptised and nurtured in their faith, and gone on to serve God with the gifts and abilities that he gives each one. 

In early 2022 the church had a strong sense that they were to relocate to a building that would enable them to be a more visible presence in the community in a facility with greater flexibility for a range of ministry and service opportunities.

Laura Baptist has now sold the historic 147 year old building to Craig and Catherine Blesing and look forward to the restoration work they are planning for this beautiful part of Laura’s history.

Excerpt from Rev H.E. Hughes: Our First Hundred Years: The Baptist Church of South Australia, 1937

“One of the earliest settlers in Laura was Mr H.W.A. Walter. He made his home about a mile out of town, and as soon as his house was finished his largest room was thrown open for use as a preaching place on the Lord’s Day.

The Rev. David Badger was one of the first to avail himself of the opportunity of preaching in that room. He conducted Divine worship there every Sunday evening for some time.

Photo Trove

A building site was presented by Miss Lydia Walter, and the Baptist folk got busy and carted stone for the erection of a substantial Church building.

Converts were won to Christ, and on June 20, 1875, the first baptizing congregation assembled on the banks of the Rocky River to witness the ceremony. Mr Badger was the preacher.

The Church building was ready for use in November, 1875, but for some reasons not recorded the actual formation of the Church did not take place until August 18 of the following year, when 12 members were given the right hand of fellowship. It was agreed that only baptized believers should be eligible to hold the offices of pastor and deacons.

Fourteen ministers have had charge of the Laura Church in the past 62 years. It has always been a happy Church, and has counted for much in that pretty Northern town. The names of Walter and Campbell deserve a prominent place in our Baptist Book of Remembrance.”


Excerpt from Laura Baptist Church Constitution: August 18th 1876

“We, the undersigned members of various churches, being thrown together by the Providence of God in Laura and its vicinity, and believing it to be the will of God that His people should be banded together in visible church fellowship, hereby agree to form ourselves into a church of that great faith and order usually called Baptists.

We agree to watch over each other in love and to cooperate in upholding the ordinance of religion and the regular worship of God. We will mutually assist in maintaining the exercise of a pure and wholesome discipline in the church and will regulate all its affairs in harmony with the expressed will of Christ.”

See Laura Baptist Church – 50 Years of Christian Witness (The Register: 31 July 1926) for the full Constitution.

1882 – 200 locals decide to follow Jesus

In 1883 Mrs Emilia Baeyertz, a Jewish woman who had come to believe in Jesus, was invited by the SA Baptist Association to hold meetings in South Australia.

She visited nearly every Baptist Church in the state, including Laura Baptist.

From The Christian Colonist: 12 October 1883

“On Wednesday afternoon the Baptist Church was fairly filled at a meeting for women only, and at the close of the service several found peace in the blood of the Lamb.

Perhaps the most remarkable service was the meeting held at the Baptist Church on Saturday night, for men only. The writer was never present at a service where equal power was manifested. Our dear sister spoke with truest unction, and everyone present felt the solemnity of the occasion. Almost as soon as the invitation was given the vestries of the Church were filled to overflowing with anxious seekers; many of them were completely broken down under their sense of sin. At the close of the meeting it was found that about forty souls had been able to trust in Christ.”

1903 – Lecture Hall

From Laura Standard: 30 October 1903

A fine Lecture Hall has recently been erected at the rear of the Laura Baptist Church which is to serve as a schoolroom and as a hall for various functions. By the continuation of the wall of the old vestry, the church authorities have now a very convenient room 26×34. The building is to be divided off into six classrooms with wooden partitions, which will greatly facilitate the work of the SundaySchool.