Memorial Biographies of General Baptist Ministers
REV. ARVEL OAKLEY
The Rev. Arvel V. Oakley was born February 20th, 1922 in Webster County, Ky., near Oakley Home General Baptist church. From early childhood he attended church there, and at Concord, another g.b. church. Impressions were made on his mind at these places of worship that have never been forgotten. Some of these were made by Rev. Billy Williams who was the first preacher that he remembers. Other ministers who have influenced his life have been Rev. W. W. Oakley and Rev. O. L. Duncan.
Thus from early youth the ministry appealed to him. He could imagine himself before a congregation speaking to them, and before he was converted. His conversion did not come until he had reached the age of seventeen. It was during the Summer of 1939 that he was saved. This took place at home, in bed, after he had prayed the publican's prayer. He later found that his mother was reading her bible and praying for him at the time he was saved.
He joined the Oakley Home General Baptist church the fourth Sunday in august, 1939 and was baptized by the Rev. C. J. Carrol. The first Sunday in October, 1939 he preached his first sermon at Oakley Home church. there were five ministers present to encourage him. they were Rev. O. L. Duncan, Rev. W. A. Kelley, Rev. Perkins, Rev. Ralph Oakley, and Rev. James Oliver.
He was licensed to preach by Union Association of General Baptists in the Spring of 1940 at Freedom church. His ordination took place at Cumberland Valley church October 15, 1942. Those ministers taking active part in the ordination were Rev. W. W. Oakley, Rev. M. L. Clark, and Rev. W. M. Frisby.
He has pastored the following churches sin Kentucky: Union Cross Roads, Pleasant Union, Beech Grove, Mt. Pleasant, Henderson. In Indiana he has pastored the following churches: Spurgeon, Savah and Fort Branch.
The Lord has blessed his ministry in that he had enabled him to preach 1196 sermons, witness 210 conversions, baptize 93 candidates and receive 91 members into the fellowship of the church. He has married 26 couples, conducted 36 funerals and held 28 revivals.
Rev. Oakley has been Moderator of Union Association; Moderator of Presbytery, Union Association, Moderator of Ministers' and Deacons' meeting; President of Sunday School and Christian Endeavor Convention. He is a good pianist and has a good voice for singing.
* - Source - History of Union Association of General Baptist 1840 - 1953
M.D. Mc Donald