International community welcome at Baptist church in Ringgold

International community welcome at Baptist church in Ringgold

April 20th, 2011 by Katie Ward in Catoosa

Joyce Bolis, left, and her husband pastor Rex Bolis lead International Community Baptist Church on the campus of Catoosa Baptist Association. Photo by Katie Ward

Joyce Bolis, left, and her husband pastor Rex...

International Community Baptist Church welcomes all nationalities to its weekly meetings on the campus of Catoosa Baptist Association in Ringgold.

"We try to disregard culture and look at the Bible in church," said pastor Rex Bolis. "We go with what the Bible says. That makes us more united as a church. We are different colors, but we all work together as brothers and sisters in Christ."

But Bolis knows about the differences in culture and how each one approaches religion. He was a missionary in the Philippines for 25 years after beginning his ministry in the Chattanooga, Northwest Georgia area in 2003.

"In the Philippines you are face-to-face knocking on doors sharing the Gospel," he said. "In America you ask for appointments, so people invite you to their houses to share the word of God. We have more freedom to share the Gospel in the Philippines."

He said there are a lot of Filipino people living in Dalton and Chattanooga, which is why he decided to put his international church in the middle in Ringgold. He said his congregation has American, Spanish, Vietnamese, Korean and Filipino members and stressed that the church is for everybody, no matter their race.

Bolis said he indirectly he became a Christian in the Philippines in 1975 due to Christian missionaries from the United States. He attended International Theological Bible College, started in the Philippines by Tennessee Temple University.

"We are here to thank America for sending Americans to the Philippines," he said. "Now we want to reach the Filipino culture in the United States."

International Community Baptist Church services are presented in English. Bolis' sons, Keith and Rick, help with the music portion of the service singing and playing the keyboard. Bolis said he personally likes to sing gospel music and traveled with the Singing Man group made up of six pastors for 25 years.

• The International Community Baptist Church is at 72 Old Mill Lane in Ringgold on the Catoosa Baptist Association campus at the end of the horseshoe driveway. The church hosts Sunday school at 10 a.m. and worship at 11 a.m. Wednesdays at 7 p.m. the church has Bible study. To learn more about the International Community Baptist Church, call CBA at (706) 937-5323.