Emerald Bible Fellowship (EBF) started as eight families meeting together for Bible study and prayer during 1970 and early 1971. Through prayer and the timely help and encouragement of Pastor Ray Stedman of Peninsula Bible Church, it became evident to them that the Holy Spirit was forming a new body of diverse, yet like-minded, people here in the Eugene area.
As a non-denominational church, EBF began to rent the Sheldon Community Center and held its first worship service on Easter Sunday in April of 1971. After several months of growing attendance, the small group of first elders became certain that God was leading them to seek a full-time pastor-teacher to help guide and shepherd this new body of believers in Jesus Christ. Again with the timely advice of Ray Stedman, EBF called its first pastor in July of 1971. Ray Benson became the pastor three months later. Many people around the Eugene area were influenced by this new work of God and many came to faith through the lives of these people who believed that the work of the ministry really does belong to everyday followers of Jesus.
This new church outgrew both Sheldon’s Community Center and the Sheldon High School auditorium. In September of 1974 God provided a piece of property on Cal Young Road that was offered to EBF for a fraction of its worth. Construction began in January of 1976 and the first worship service was held on Christmas Eve 1977.
The Lord graciously shepherded this early group of believers as they came to experience His loving work in and through their lives. "...Christ in you, the hope of glory.” (Colossians 1:27)