Little Rock First Church of the Nazarene has been a vital part of this community and state for over 100 years. Beginning in 1900 in a small frame building on the northeast corner of Ninth and High Streets, Little Rock First Church of the Nazarene has seen incredible growth and God's hand at work over the years.
In 1906, after moving to a new facility at the corner of 14th and Johnson, FCN was officially organized with 20 members. While at that location, the property was expanded multiple times until it became apparent that a much larger facility was necessary. In 1928, with 200 members, FCN moved to Maryland (9th) and Battery Streets. It was at this location that the greatest growth was seen in the life of FCN. Under the leadership of Rev. Borders and a minister named T.W. Sharp, FCN began a radio ministry under the station KGJF. Each week, 50-60 church members contributed their time and talent to help this ministry succeed. Each day, KGJF broadcast to thousands of listeners across the region. Some of the more well known programs included Radio Sunday School of the Air, Youth Hour, Back Home Hour, Songs in the Night, Faith Hour, Promise Hour and the Children's Hour. In 1931, the station was sold to KARK, but maintained broadcast time through 1964. However, this radio ministry contributed greatly to the growth of FCN. Few will ever forget the London Rally Service held on May 24, 1931 which attracted 4,157 people. Still located at 9th and Battery, FCN continued to grow and expand the facility until the church eventually owned an entire half block of Battery between 8th and 9th streets.
In October of 1931, FCN welcomed Rev. Agnes White Diffie to serve as our pastor. Under her Godly leadership, our church continued to increase in membership and expand its ministry through the radio broadcasts. Known as Sister Diffee to people all across the state, she ministered to many of these when they were hospitalized in Little Rock. Unique in her day for being a well known woman preacher, she was also the first woman to be accepted into the Ministerial Alliance of Little Rock, was named "Woman of the Year" in Arkansas, and has had her picture hung in the State Capitol.
In 1964, under the new leadership of Dr. Thomas Hermon, the decision was made to purchase land at 1200 N Mississippi and begin building a new facility. On June 26, 1966, we held our first service at our current location with over 700 in attendance.
In 1987 the Living Nativity began under the leadership of Dr. Gavin Raath and associate pastor, David Hintz. This ministry involved nearly every member of the church and grew every year until it was known around the world. Like the Living Nativity, worship arts, drama and music continue to be a vital part of the life of FCN. Every year we produce summer, winter and spring concerts for our community and church family.
On July 10, 2016 we celebrated 50 years of ministry on Mississippi with a wonderful day of singing, worshiping, hearing from the leaders of the past and from the leaders of the future. Little Rock First Church of the Nazarene continues to grow and look forward to what God has in store.