Wyldewood Baptist Church was founded in June of 1961 under the name "Southside Baptist Church." It was located on the south side of Oshkosh in a former Methodist church building, on the corner of 11th and Minnesota. A handful of people gathered under the leadership of Pastor Doug Kasten and began to build a Bible-believing, independent Baptist church. For a brief time, the church was also pastored by Ilah Claycomb, until June of 1965, when Pastor Howard Nelson was called to lead the church.
For the next 22 years the church grew tremendously! In 1975, having outgrown their first building, the congregation moved west of town onto a 20-acre site in the flourishing Wyldewood development. The church was renamed Wyldewood Baptist Church.
In 1975, a Christian school was opened, with 50 students enrolled in grades K-12. Wyldewood Christian School continues to maintain high academic standards and Biblical principles, helping Christian families educate their children in a godly atmosphere.
All along this time the youth ministry was expanded, with weekly programs for all ages and many adults volunteering to serve in different capacities. The church still operates three buses on a regular basis, providing free transportation to anyone needing a ride to the youth programs or Sunday School.
In 1979, Couriers for Christ was founded. The focus of these men and their wives is to provide Bibles, Christian literature, and other needed material to the former Eastern Bloc countries. Through this thriving ministry more than a million pieces of literature have been given out to these needy people.
Also in 1979, the church started a Bible publishing ministry, called "Bearing Precious Seed." This ministry prints and distributes Bibles right from our facilities in Oshkosh. To date, 35 countries around the globe have had their language published, much of the focus being Central and South America. The scripture is provided to the missionaries at no cost, with churches across America partnering to help make this financially possible. In 1996 the Virginia Nelson Memorial Print Shop was built to allow individuals to personally assemble Bibles and Biblical literature, greatly enhancing the publishing ministry.
Pastor Nelson, after stepping down as Senior Pastor founded "Scandinavians For Christ," a mission outreach to Norway, Sweden, and Finland.
After serving as the associate for 18 years, Pastor Randall King was chosen to succeed Pastor Nelson in 1988. Under his leadership, the church has grown to more than 500.
Another exciting facet of the ministry is Rev. Alan Ives and his ministry in Music Evangelism. He and his family provide music and preaching all across America, and they have a bookstore called Concord and Harmony that is an excellent source for Godly music and materials.
In September of 1996 Wyldewood Baptist Bible Institute was established to provide additional ministry training for those in our congregation. The curriculum is being developed for a three year certificate program. Later in 1996 our church became the home church for a missionary aviation ministry, "Wings As Eagles." This ministry serves mission fields around the world by providing transportation for pastors, missionaries, and support teams who serve on the field. These dedicated men operate a hangar at Whittman field with 3 planes which are used to train young men and transport people to the mission field.
Wyldewood Baptist Church strives to be an outreach into the community by hosting the statewide ACE school convention in March, "Blue and White Sunday" honoring law enforcement personnel in July, an aviation conference "Meeting In The Air" during the EAA fly-in, and the state wide ladies meeting "The King's Daughters" every September. In addition to this an annual mission conference is held in the fall, leading to the support of over 50 missionary families across the world.
Today, the congregation is growing and enthusiastic. In February of 2013, the congregation extended the call to Jason Brenenstuhl to become the new Senior Pastor. Now, Pastor King serves as the Missions Pastor here at Wyldewood, providing direction and vision to expand the mission ministries.
We continue to seek more ways to honor God, help Christians, and reach the lost for Jesus Christ. Our goal is to reach our community with the gospel message of repentance and faith. We believe that all people everywhere need a Saviour, and that Jesus Christ came into the world to save sinners. Our ministry, both here and abroad, is to make plain God's plan of salvation through the atoning blood of His only begotten Son.