Rome Baptist Church



Mission Statement

We are a multi-cultural, English speaking body of believers in Christ. We are committed to obeying and glorifying God, proclaiming the Good News of Jesus Christ, growing together in His likeness, and reaching out to the community through Bible-centered worship, teaching, fellowship, evangelism, and service.
See also details on What We Believe

Our history

Twelve people met in the worship room at Piazza San Lorenzo in Lucina, 35 in Rome on 12th August 1962. This was the beginning of what is now the Rome Baptist Church. The church was formally organized on 10th March 1963 with 15 charter members. Reverend William C. Ruchti and his wife, Helen led the organizational efforts, missionaries sent to Rome by the Foreign Mission Board of the Southern Baptist Convention.

The Ruchtis served the church until June 1985 when they were replaced by Reverend Kenneth and Irene Lawson, who served until May 1998. For the next few years, we had the privilege of having several volunteer and missionary couples serve the church. The current pastor and wife are Reverend David and Cathy Hodgdon who arrived in April 2001 from Buena Vista, Colorado.

In September 2000 the church became independent of the International Mission Board and from then became a self-supporting independent church.

Rome Baptist Church today

We are an international evangelical church in the heart of Rome and our congregation is comprised of people from all over the world. We come from different nations and denominations yet we are one in the body of Christ.

Rome Baptist Church today is a thriving congregation. There is an activity every night of the week, and there is something for everyone to get involved in or help out. We have Bible studies, English language classes, a well-stocked library, music program and much more!

The church building

The church is located in a palazzo owned by the Italian Baptist Union (UCEBI). This building was once part of Palazzo Ruspoli, originally built in the 16th century. It is said that the site where the church now stands was once the stable for the Ruspoli family horses.

The building was purchased by the Foreign Mission Board in 1920, and deeded to the Italian Baptist Union in 1994. The space occupied by the church consists of a sanctuary on the ground floor that seats over 200; a Sunday School and meeting space on the second floor; and the pastor’s apartment on the third floor.

The piazza

Piazza San Lorenzo in Lucina takes its name from the Catholic church that was originally built in the 5th century. Today, the square is closed to traffic and hosts various activities throughout the year, including the occasional “invasion” by our congregation.