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New Here?

We’re Saving a Seat for You


Visiting any church for the first time can be somewhat difficult.  We want to put you at ease at Tabernacle.  On your first visit to TBC, you will be greeted by one of our friendly greeters at the main door and then one of our ushers will direct you to a Sunday school class or help you find a seat in the auditorium.

We want you to receive a blessing from the helpful teaching and preaching of God’s Word, the soul-stirring music, and our friendly people.

Who We Are

We strive to be intentional in our love to people, our exaltation of Christ, and our discipleship of believers.
Who We Are
Loving People

God-like love is the singular act that separates God's people from all others. "By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another." John 13:35.  Because we recognize our own deep need for God's grace, we are quick to extend that same love and grace to our church family and to any guest who may come.

Exalting Christ

Other than a warm greeting from an usher, the very first thing that everyone sees when they enter the lobby of our church is this verse above the doors entering the auditorium, "That we should be to the praise of His glory."  Eph. 1:12.  This expression is not just to show on a website or wall, but it is truly our thrust and our constant desire.  From the look of our landscape and maintenance of our facilities to the singing and preaching in the services, we maintain that Christ must be made pre-eminent.

Discipling Believers

The greatest message is the message of God's salvation made available to all men.  We pray that anyone who attends our services will receive the truth of the gospel and receive Christ as their Savior.  We then strive to help our church people grow in their walk with Christ through practical Bible teaching, times of fellowship, and intercessory prayer.

What to Expect
Piano Lesson

What to Expect

Walking into a church for the first time can be intimidating, so we want you to help you know what to expect when you visit.

We promise not to embarrass you or point you out. If you wish you can fill out a connection card and we’ll follow up with you later. You can come knowing you are in the midst of a group of broken people, whom all need God’s grace.


The greatest message is the message of God's salvation made available to all men.  We pray that anyone who attends our services will receive the truth of the gospel and receive Christ as their Savior.  We then strive to help our church people grow in their walk with Christ through practical Bible teaching, times of fellowship, and intercessory prayer.


First and foremost, music must please God in both its message and its delivery.  The message must not be overwhelmed by the music.  We love for our congregation to sing old and new hymns, choruses, and spiritual songs.  Often, we will have solos or group singing from our church members.  These songs especially encourage the listener in their walk with Christ.

Growth Groups

Our Growth Groups (Sunday school) classes meet each Sunday morning at 10 am.  The purpose of this ministry is for small group fellowship and discipleship.  Each class is age-appropriate and our teachers through the doctrines, narratives, and characters of the Bible. "As newborn babes, desire the sincere milk of the Word, that ye may grow thereby."  1 Peter 2:2


Our church people will give systematically to the Lord's work but we don’t encourage and invite people to come to TBC for their offering.  It is our prayer that our service will be a gift to you.  The important thing about being a guest at Tabernacle Baptist is that you are blessed and encouraged from having been with us.

Service Format

Our service is intentional in that it follows a deliberate order of worship, but it's not formal in style.  We open with a warm welcome or video announcements, sing hymns or choruses, and enjoy special music from one of our singing groups or instrumentalists. After the message, we allow anyone to respond to God's speaking  and then we close in prayer.  The typical service will finish around 12:10 or sooner.


Preaching is primary at Tabernacle Baptist Church.  You will find that Pastor Mike and other preachers normally preach expositionally, meaning that they work through passages of Scripture.  Sunday mornings are dedicated to the year's theme and Sunday evenings are usually a verse by verse message through a book from the Bible, alternating from Old Testament to New Testament.  In every sermon, the invitation to salvation and close discipleship is given.

What to Wear

There is not a specific dress code at Tabernacle Baptist Church for members or guests.  Our church ministry leaders and most of our church family dress in a traditional “Sunday” Dress; however, our main goal is that you feel welcome on your visit to Tabernacle Baptist Church.


One of the purposes at TBC is to show the next generation the praises of Christ.  Our children's ministry is called HOPEKidz based on Psalm 78:7- "That they might set their hope in God and not forget the works of God, but keep His commandments."  On Sunday morning, children have dedicated Growth Groups classes based on age or school grade.  During the Sunday morning service, they have two specific classes for Li'l HOPEKidz and HOPEKidz church.  On Sunday nights, our HOPEKidz choir meets for singing and teaching.  And on Wednesday nights, we have teaching classes for all ages.  

Meet the Team

Meet the Elders
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Michael Free

Lead Pastor

Pastor Mike came to Tabernacle Baptist Church in July of 1991 following his marriage to Preacher Jack and Miss Pat’s daughter, Sherri.  He served as the youth and assistant pastor for nearly 11 years.  When Preacher Jack stepped down in 2001, the church then called Pastor Mike to be their pastor in January of 2002.  They have three adult children: Jonathan, Jessica, and Jordyn.


Jonathan Free

Media and Video

Jonathan grew up in Tabernacle Baptist church having both his grandfather and father as pastor.  After Bible college and seminary, Jonathan came to TBC as an intern and is now the media and videographer of the church and camp ministry.  He has his own videography business and he and his wife Rachel work in our HOPEKidz ministry on Sunday mornings.

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Joe Allred


Joe grew up at Tabernacle Baptist and recently completed his bachelor's degree from Pensacola Christian College.  Joe works with our teens, children, and our camp ministry. He is studying for his master's degree in Bible Exposition online from Pensacola Theological Seminary.

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Joel Potter

Choir Director

Joel and his family came to TBC in the fall of 2021.  Having served in ministry in Florida, West Virginia, and Ohio, Joel is gifted not only in music, but teaching and preaching as well.  His wife Charis assists in our ladies' ministry and they have three teenage sons, Caden, Cohen, and Cavan.

What We Believe

What We Believe

Our History

Tabernacle Baptist Church began in 1976 when the Lord laid on the heart of Jack and Pat Phillips to come back to the Candor, NC area. Preacher Jack had pastored Candor Baptist Church for several years in the 1960s. He left Candor to pastor Ebenezer Christian Church in Raleigh and then Grace Chapel in Sanford.


Through the prayers of several faithful friends and the leading of the Lord, Preacher Jack and Ms. Pat, along with their children, Chris and Sherri moved back to Candor and planted Tabernacle Baptist Church. The initial meetings were on the grounds of Living Water Youth Camp. God grew the church numerically and in 1980, the congregation moved out of the camp Chapel and into the existing church sanctuary. That chapel building was dedicated to the faithfulness of Preacher Jack and Ms. Pat and was renamed The Phillips Chapel.  A gymnasium/fellowship hall was built in 1986 and was named in honor of Johnson and Odell Livingston who were charter members and donated the land to the church and camp.  An additional wing was added to the church in 1995.  


In 2002, Preacher Jack stepped away from the pastorate to go into evangelism and his assistant, Michael Free, was called to be the pastor where he still serves today.  Preacher Jack went home to be with the Lord in April of 2023.  In 2001, Ms. Pat, after 43 years of faithful service, stepped down as the choir director. Ms. Pat is still living with her daughter Sherri and Pastor Mike.

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