The Free Will Baptist denomination is a fellowship of evangelical believers united in extending the witness of Christ and the building of His Church throughout the world. The rise of Free Will Baptists can be traced to the influence of Baptists of Arminian persuasion who settled in the colonies from England. First in North Carolina (1727) and then in New Hampshire (1780), the denomination began on two separate fronts. Both lines of Free Will Baptists taught the doctrines of free will, free grace, and free salvation.
In 1935, the two groups came together to form the National Association of Free Will Baptists. Churches can now be found in 42 states and over 20 foreign countries. Four institutions of higher learning are spread out from east coast to west coast. A vibrant international and national mission program carries the Gospel to those who have not yet heard the good news. National, state, and local church men’s, women’s, and youth ministries give a place for everyone to be involved and serve. The National Association is headquartered in Antioch, Tennessee.
The Arkansas State Association of Free Will Baptists was organized in 1898, though churches had been established in the state as early as 1841. Today, 190 churches, divided up into 15 districts, comprise the Arkansas State Association of Free Will Baptists. The State Office is located at 2105 Harkrider Street in Conway, AR. The State work is carried out through four divisions: State Office (Executive), Christian Education, Missions, and Youth (which operates Camp Beaverfork in Conway).