About Us

HISTORY

BETHEL MISSIONARY BAPTIST CHURCH, INC.

"The church's one foundation is Jesus Christ her Lord: she is the new creation, by water and the Word. From heaven he came and sought her to be his holy bride, with his own blood he brought her, and for her life he died."

"Upon this rock I will build my church and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it," (Matthew 16:18). The vision was born in the minds of a group of Christians who recognized the need for a public place to worship; then located at 503 South Parramore, the Bethel Missionary Baptist Church, was organized under the Reverend Bill Williams, who was the founder and Pastor on August 26, 1912. There is little information on the Reverend Bill Williams; however, after his leadership the Reverend H.M. Reddick was called to be the second pastor of the church. Under his leadership there were Mothers of the church instead of Deaconesses. The following Deacons and Mothers served under his administration.

Deacons
Deacon L. Smith, Chairman
Deacon J. Bryant, Secretary
Deacon W. Williams
Deacon C. Colton
Deacon P. Peterson
Deacon L. Donn
Deacon J. Benson
Mothers of the Church
Sister Jimmie L. Smith
Sister M. Bryant
Sister Mary Williams
Sister A. Colton

After the late Reverend H.M. Reddick's administration, the late Reverend J.S. Tinsley was called as pastor, from September, 1930 to February, 1953. He was the third Pastor of the Bethel Missionary Baptist Church. Under his leadership, the following Deacons were added to the board. Also the Mothers of the Church changed to the Deaconesses.

Deacons
Deacon Charlie Gregg
Deacon Charlie Rivers
Deacon F. Sampson
Deacon N. Elim
Deacons F. Levet
Deacon Artis McWhorter
Deacon George Delaney *
Deacon Issac Holland
Deacon Clemon Dawson
Deacon Ralph Adams
Deacon Barney Campbell*
Deacon Frank Goss
Deacon Charlie Mack
Deacon Allen Cason
Deacon Emmett Davis
Deacon Sylvester Clark
Deacon A. Kimble
Deacon J. Gilbert
Deacon Lewis Boatman, Sr.*
Deaconesses
Sister C. Gregg
Sister Alice Rivers
Sister Lillie Anderson
Sister Susie Dawson
Sister Sarah Levet
Sister J.B. Campbell
Sister E. M. Goss
Sister Corrine Kimble
Sister Allean Cason
Sister Katie G. Stevens
Sister Thelma Brown
Sister Bertha Belton
Sister Ossie Brannon
Sister Mary Boatman
Sister Louise Clark
Sister Willie Manuel
Sister Hattie Beauford
Sister Lola Varnadore
Sister Nancy Jackson
Sister Ida Mack
Sister Daisy Deloney
Sister Eliza Holland

*NOTE: DEACON ISSAC HOLLAND WAS BETHEL'S OLDEST DEACON*

(* Ordained by Reverend J.S. Tinsley)

The following auxiliaries were organized under Reverend J.S. Tinsley:

Mission No. 1 (1927)
(1931)
Junior Women Society
Choir No. 1
Choir No. 2



1947-1956
Youth Department
1948-1956
Usher Board No. 1
Sunday School
BTU
1950-1952
Deaconess Board
Sister Ella Ervin, President
Sister Maude Bryan, President
Sister Nettie E. Pelham, President and Organizer
Brother Edward Moore, President
Sister Janie B. Campbell, Organizer and Musician
Sister Ethel Cunningham, President
Sister Daisy Ward, Musician
Sister Edna Sampson, Musician
Sister Eula Pearl Jenkins, Director
Sister Leola Jenkins, Supervisor
Sister Eula Pearl Jenkins, Supervisor
Sister Nellie Cutts, President
Sister Leola Jenkins, Superintendent
Reverend S.D. Jenkins, Director
Sister Eula Pearl Jenkins, Director
Sister Sarah Edwards, President
In March, 1953, Reverend Lewis Boatman, Sr., was called to serve as the fourth pastor. Under his leadership the following Deacons and Deaconesses were added.
Deacons
Deacon J.D. Wilson
Deacon Jimmy Bryant
Deacon W. Howard *
Deacon Melvin Doctor, Sr.*
Deacon Lonnie Harvey
Deacon Walter Morris
Deacon Jack Regular
Deacon Edward Davis
Deacon P.W. Gardner
Deacon Mack C. McGhee
Deacon Jimmy Varanadore
Deacon Clyde Herbert
Deacon Eddie Banks
Deacon Leonard Mike
Deacon Lawrence Golden
Deaconesses
Sister Dorothy Wilson
Sister Lula Howard
Sister Annie M. Doctor
Sister Mary Harvey
Sister Ann Morris
Sister Delores Regular
Sister Sally Dixon
Sister Louise Mike
Sister Ella M. Davis
Sister Evelyn Gardner
Sister Thelma McGhee
Sister Annie Ruth Varnadore
Sister Catherine Banks
Sister Lula B. Golden
Sister Pauline Woods
Sister Odell Clark
Sister Sally Fulse
Sister Willie L. Locke
Sister Willie R. Herbert

The following persons were licensed and/or ordained:

Reverend Barney Campbell*
Reverend Thomas Woods
Reverend Allen Weaver, Jr.*
Reverend Tommy Stewart
Reverend Willie James Favors
Reverend George Clark
Reverend Henry Peoples
Reverend Melvin Doctor, Sr.*
Reverend Joel L. Dixon
Reverend Arthur Carson*

(* Ordained by Reverend Lewis Boatman, Sr.)

The following persons were on the Trustee Board under the administration of Reverend Lewis Boatman, Sr.

Brother James Ford, Chairman
Brother Theodore Belton
Deacon Frank Goss
Deacon Artis McWhorter
Deacon Allen Cason
Brother Lewis Boatman, Jr.
Deacon Joseph D. Wilson
Deacon Jack Regular
Deacon Issac Holland

The following auxiliaries were organized:

Pulpit Aid Board (August, 1954)
Bethel Baptist Chorus (1958)
Renamed Bethel Baptist Choir No. 3 (1968)
Sister Mary Alice Gaines, President
Deacon Artis McWhorter
Brother Lewis Boatman, Jr., organized the choir.

Since that time the Choir has had (8) Presidents and eleven (11) Musicians.

Presidents
Brother Artie Holmes
Brother Willie Boatman, Jr.
Deacon Jimmy Bryant
Sister Olivia Davis
Deacon Edward Davis
Deacon Jack Regular
Deacon J.D. Wilson
Deacon Jimmy Varnadore





Male Chorus (1960)


Senior Mission No. 2
(March 25, 1970)
Young Adult Choir
(September, 1972)
Nurses Guild (1969)
Brotherhood (March 3, 1967)
Usher Board No. 2
Blood Bank
Easter Sunrise Service
Musicians
Sister Janie B. Campbell
Sister Mamie Mobley
Sister Ethel Fortson
Sister Vinell Hardrick
Deacon Jimmy Bryant
Sister Regina Godwin
Sister Ola Morrison
Deacon Ralph Segar, Sr.
Sister Dorothy Justice
Brother Dale Carey
Reverend Hugh Brockington


Brother Lonnie Gamble, President
Deacon Jimmy Bryant, Musician and Organizer

Sister Deloris Leeks, President

Brother Anthony Hargrove, President

Sister Corrine Smith, President
Brother D. D. Jackson, President
Deacon Ralph Adams, President
Deacon Frank Goss, Chairman
Sister Nettie B. Thomas, Organizer

Under the leadership of Reverend Lewis Boatman, Sr., the following assets were purchased:

Building and Land

Lot/Church, Parsonage Annex, and Rental House
Furniture (Church and Parsonage)
Carpet
Paved Parking Lot
Lot/New Parsonage, 734 Jernigan Street

Instruments

(2) Two Organs

(2) Two Pianos

After serving faithfully and relentlessly 25 years of pastorate, and overseeing the building of our current Sanctuary, with the spirit of humility of a true shepherd, the Divine Providence provided the retirement of Reverend Lewis Boatman, Sr., on January 29, 1978.

Reverend R. W. Wiggins, was called by Bethel to pastor on June 23, 1978. Under his pastorate Bethel continued moving in the area of development and progress. As a result of this development and progress, three auxiliaries were organized, as well as several committees.

The Wiggins Mass Choir
(February 21, 1979)
Pastor's Aid Board
(August 2, 1979)
Orientation Class
The Orientation Class was organized under the B. T. U. Department,
(September 12, 1979)
Annual Program Committee
Finance Committee
Kitchen Committee
Calendar Committee

Membership Committee
Publicity Committee
Deacon Mack McGhee, President

Sister Thelma McGhee, President

Deacon Mack McGhee, President



Sister Delores Regular Chairwoman
Deacon Jack Regular, Chairman
Deacon Frank Goss, Chairman
Reverend R. W. Wiggins, and Auxiliary Presidents
Sister Queenie DeSue, Chairwoman
Sister Geneva Barker, Chairwoman

Under his leadership, 133 members (64 candidates, 46 baptisms, 48 Christian experiences, and 21 reinstatements were united with Jesus Christ our Lord. (Romans 6:23)

The following persons were added to the Trustee and Deaconess Boards:

Trustees
Deacon Mack McGhee
Deaconesses
Sister Dora Williams
Sister Marie Bankson
Sister Nettie B. Thomas

The following improvements were made:

Purchases

Public address system installed throughout the church
Pulpit Set
Furniture
Pews
New Air Conditioning
Carpeting installed throughout the Church
Steam Table
Small Van
Coke Machine
Refrigerator
Choir Robes (All Choirs)


Renovations

Enlarged Finance Office
Converted living quarters into Pastor's Office and Sunday School Classrooms
Parking lot extended to Long Street

Definite strides were made economically under Reverend R. W. Wiggins administration. Namely, the organ and the piano were paid off. The amount on the church loan was $17,200.00; leaving a balance of $10,800.00. The full church mortgage balance of $28,000.00 was paid in full.

The Church held its first Pre-Women's Day Observance on Sunday, September 30, 1979, and as part of this program Sister Annie B. Thomas organized the first "Little Miss Bethel" Contest on Sunday, October 21, 1979. There were two marriages and two baby dedications performed by Reverend Wiggins. Sister Susie Lawson was married on August 23, 1979 and Sister Brenda Frazier, March 3, 1979. Certificates of dedication were issued to Baby Corey Lamar Lamb, October 8, 1978 and Baby Tia Monique Jefferson, November 12, 1978.

After the Lord saw fit to end the tenure of Reverend R.W. Wiggins, the Lord called the present sixth and efficient Pastor, Reverend Rollie Murray, Jr. The Reverend Murray was called to Bethel on November 4, 1984. Under his leadership the congregation grew by leaps and bounds,

2,350 members, (889 by baptism; 841 by Christian Experience; 185 by restoration, 44 by rededication; and 15 by letter, and 1 by Watch-care) A major component of this ministry has been the praying, preaching, and teaching of the Word of God. This has enlightened the congregation to be supportive and cooperative in the organization, implementation, initiation, and revitalization of the various ministries of the Church.

These ministries include but are not limited to: The Women's Prayer Ministry, Outreach Ministries, which include feeding the homeless and distribution of food from the Food Bank; Inreach Ministries including Prayer Partners, Bible Conference, Workshops with ministries to promote a more effective ministry. Media Ministry to minister to those who are sick and shut-in, the New Member Orientation, Brotherhood Ministry, Radio Ministry to reach our community around us, Intermediate Women Mission Ministry, Membership Ministry, Evangelistic Explosion, Discipleship Training, Visitation Ministry to enhance church attendance and participation, Refreshment Center, Finance Ministry, Birth Month, Youth Church, and the organization of the Music Ministry with the development of the Bethel Mass Choir, Bethel Fishermen, Sanctuary Choir, Voices of Unity, Echoes of Joy, Unified Choir, Voice of Praise and Praise Team. The Church has also activated reinstatement of the corporation and an active non-profit organization. From another perspective there have been other strides made under his leadership.

We now realize the following purchases and improvements.

Building and Land
634 West Anderson Street
642 West Anderson Street
645 Long Street & Adjacent Lot

Renovations
Restroom Facilities
Executive Offices (Pastor & Secretary)
Music & Arts Offices
Parsonage
Church & Beautification of Properties
Piano
Lighting System (Church and Parking)
Purchases
Kitchen Supplies
Stove
Freezer
Sound System
Phone System
Computers (Pastor, Secretary)
Church Coach (Mini)
Church Coach (Full Size)

Instruments
Keyboards
Drums
Organ

Additionally, there have been several Ministers licensed and added to the Ministerial Staff. Several of these Ministers, have advanced to the Pastoral Ministry.

The following persons were licensed/ordained to the Gospel Ministry:

Reverend G. Christopher Clark *+
Minister Fernando S. Washington, Jr.
Minister Marvin Alls, Sr.
Reverend Anthony Parks *+
Reverend Patrick Thomas *+
Minister Harold Woods, Jr.

(*Ordained by Reverend Rollie Murray, Jr.)
(+ Presently serving as Pastors)

 

The following persons to serve currently with Ministerial Staff.

 

Reverend Rollie Murray, Jr., Senior Pastor
Reverend David Harrison
Minister Harold Woods, Jr.
Minister Fernando S. Washington, Jr.
Minister Marvin Alls, Sr.

Several Deacons and Deaconesses have been ordained and appointed during the tenure of Pastor Murray.

Deacons
Deacon Stephen Graham
Deacon Lonnie Gamble*
Deacon Charles Williams
Deacon Joseph Holmes
Deacon Dwayne Williams
Deacon Theodore Gideon*
Deacon Eugene Alls
Deacon Clarence Barber
Deacon Johnnie Bright
Deacon James Ford*
Deacon Thaddeus Lawhorne
Deacon Lonnie Washington
Deacon Raymond Carson
Deaconesses
Sister Irene Williams
Sister Florence Holmes
Sister Ida Williams
Sister Emma Goss*
Sister Teal Graham
Sister Georgia Thornton*
Sister Evelyn Askiew*
Sister Lela Alls*
Sister Audrey Barber
Sister Cleo Ford
Sister Della Lawhorne
Sister Twanza Washington
Sister Mittie Carson

(*Deceased)

There have also been a large number of marriages and baby dedications performed during Pastor Murray's tenure.

The following Trustees were added:


Trustees
Sister Shirley Hird-Carr
Sister Curisten Dixon
Sister Mary Waters
Brother James Ford*
Brother Nathaniel Shaw
Brother Roosevelt Lakes*
Brother Eugene Alls
Brother Harold Woods, Sr.
Brother Clinton Gillens, Sr.

(*Deceased)

...And God is continuing to bless Bethel Missionary Baptist Church.  As embrace our historic Centennial Celebration, we continue to strive for excellence as a Bible Teaching, Bible Preaching, Bible Believing, New Testament Church. We pursue Edifying, Elevating, and Educating...One Heart at a Time.  To God be the Glory!!!!!!






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