History

1831 

-As slaves, worshipped in the gallery of First Baptist Church at Adams and Second Streets (now located at E. Parkways and Poplar Streets)

 -Rev. Henry Lawrence, Preacher - A Negro Methodist

-Named Middle Baptist and worshipped separately from Whites

 

1850   

-Church relocated at Washington and Fourth Streets

-White frame building built for slaves and free persons of color

-Called Washington Street Church

-Became Missionary Baptist

 

1858 

-Church moved from Washington Street to Main & Exchange Streets

-Later moved to Quinn Street

-Called Quinn Street Church

 

1859 Rev. Finley, Pastor

-First white pastor

 Rev. T.J. Drand, Pastor

-Another white pastor

 

1862 Rev. William Brinkley, Pastor

-Born free, well-educated

-Exceptionable Bible Scholar

-Exerted leadership in religious, civic affairs and economic problems of Negros

(The beginning of the church’s involvement in civic affairs)

-Published a newsletter, “The Living Way.”

 

1866 

-Church burned during race riots because the church had been used as a school

-Borrowed $5,000 to rebuild the church

-Organized the Howe Institute (that later become Owen Jr. College, merged with LeMoyne College)

 

1885

-68 members expelled for joining secret societies (fraternal organizations)

 

1886

-Church burned and rebuilt

 

1896

-Rev. Brinkley forced to leave the city and went to Stockton, CA (taking all members except 6 with him.)

-Known members of the 6 are: Minnie Payne, Elizabeth Bond and Julia Lee

-Sold church to Baron Hirch Synagogue

 

1897 Rev. J.B. Woods, Pastor

-The 6 members reorganized the church

 

1900 Rev. William Winfield, Pastor

-Increased membership to 200

-Moved to Alabama and Hill Streets

-Bought first piano

-Minnie Payne, pianist

 

Ministers following Rev. Winfield

 Rev. J.C. Clark, Rev. A.D. Hurt, Rev. J. Mitchell, Rev. W. Springer, Rev. E. White

 Rev. M.L. Johnson, Rev. E. Johnson, Rev. T. Gatewood, Rev. H. Perry

 

1936 Rev. W.E. Ragsdale

 -Moved church to 821 Lane Ave.

-The church split forming Emanuel Baptist Church

 

1944 W.P. Tate

-Carried the church into the Friendship Association

 

1950 Rev. E.W. Williamson

-Added Education Complex which included a dining area and 8 classrooms

-Fostered Christian Education

-Emphasized servant stewardship

-Organized the Birthday Clubs as a part of the Missionary Society

 

1956 Dr. Benjamin Lawson Hooks, Pastor

-Added “Greater” to the name of Middle Baptist

-Increased membership

-Opened a Daycare Center

-Created new choirs:

Choral Ensemble

Mass Choir

Voices of Revelations

Frances Dancy-Hooks Chorale

-Founded the International Baptist Tea as a fundraiser for LeMoyne-Owen College

-Moved congregation to Lamar Avenue in 1970

-Purchased new van

-Moved congregation to 4982 Knight Arnold Rd. in 1997

-Emphasized religious, civil rights and business affairs

-Founded Madonna Guild Nursery

-Initiated Garden of Prayer

-Adopted Bethel Grove and Evans Elementary Schools

-Initiated Health Ministry

-Initiated Children’s Moments during worship service

-Emphasized Stewardship

-Involved members in Religious Retreats

-Weekly televised worship services

 

2009 Rev. Kenneth L. Pinckney, Pastor

-Served 15 years as associate pastor

-Emphasized and engaged the church in technology

-Developed first hard cover church picture directory

-Led Children’s Moments during worship service

-Oversaw Wednesday Night Bible Study Service

 

2010 Rev. Robert L. Mason, Pastor

-Started a radio broadcast ministry

-Initiated first Leadership Training for all officers

-Presentation of a convocation

-Purchased a new 25-passenger bus

-Development of a strategic management team and expanded Christian Education

-Added a nontraditional Sunday School Class

 

2014 Rev. William McKinley Jackson

-Reinitiated Beautiful Garden of Prayer

-Restructured Music Department

-Initiated New Members Class

-Developed Children’s Church

-Directed the development of after-school youth basketball program through Power Center Academy

-Administered new gymnasium floor in conjunction with Power Center Academy

-Initiated the following ministries:

Book Club

The Bridge Youth And Young Adult Ministry

Church Fellowship

The C.I.A. Children’s Department

Food Pantry

Legal Clinic

Men’s Ministry

Soup Kitchen

Pastor’s Aides

New Members 

Men’s Ministry

Women’s Ministry