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Our History

“Church History is the record of God's gracious, wonderful and mighty deeds, showing how by his Spirit and Word he rules his Church and conquers the world.”

-Nils Forsander


1900 - 1920

In the year 1900, Rev. Elijah Brooks met with a group of dedicated Christians to establish a church in the Hanover community. Rev. Brooks bought the parcel of land for the first building, which was only 30x24 feet, and became the first pastor. Thus, the Nazarene Baptist Church was born. In 1902 Sister Elizabeth Brooks, Rev. Elijah Brooks’ wife, became a member and worked diligently by her husband’s side to help make Nazarene a church for the community. This included selling her jewelry during the lean years to help with finances. While laboring for the Lord, Rev. Brooks’ health began to fail and he sent for Rev. Henry Randolph to assist. On September 4, 1907, after serving faithfully for seven years as a dedicated pastor, Rev. Brooks was called from labor to eternal rest. The church elected Rev. Randolph as its pastor. He served faithfully for eight progressive years.

1920 - 1950

The next pastors were Rev. Arthur Williams and Rev. Thomas M. Allen. Their stay was short but progressive. The Rev. L. H. Dickerson was the next pastor elected. During his administration Rev. Elijah Hill was ordained to the ministry. Brother Alfred Robinson was ordained as a Deacon and the first choir was organized. Sis. Sarah Winston served faithfully. She was the first organist. Rev. Dickerson’s leadership was very successful until he left in 1932. When Rev. Dickerson left, Rev. Elijah Hill carried on for a while. During this time Rev. John L. Hobson, Jr. was licensed to the ministry. Rev. M. C. Brown was the next pastor elected. Under his leadership Rev. Hobson was ordained to the ministry and Rev. L. M. Bray, Sr. and Rev. J. E. Thornton were licensed to the ministry. Brother Isaiah Allen was ordained as a Deacon. Rev. W. Dudley was elected when Rev. Washington left. Under his leadership the members put on a drive to raise money for a choir stand. The amount of $650.00 was raised. During Rev. Dudley’s term Brothers Samuel Hill, Jr., James A. Hill, and Raymond Thornton were ordained as Deacons. After a period of illness, Rev. Dudley was called to eternal rest. Rev. George Ambrose was elected pastor and served for a short time.


1950 - 1975

In 1954, Rev. Elijah Hill was elected pastor. He was the son of one of the charter members and also a member of this church. During his administration the following Deacons were ordained: Brothers Cortez Allen, Beverly Green, Sr., Edwin Allen, Sr., Phillip Fox, Sr., and Theodore Anderson. Rev. James A. Hill was licensed to the ministry, and the Usher Board and Missionary Circle were reorganized and a Baptist Training Union organized. Under Rev. Hill’s guidance, Sisters Gladys Moore and Martha Allen Price were set apart by the church as Deaconess. In 1955 Rev. Hill called a meeting to consider the repairing of the church. After careful and prayerful consideration, the members decided that it would be wiser and less expensive to build a new church. The members propose fund-raising projects to raise finance in 1955 and 1956 – this was a successful venture. On Thanksgiving in 1956, ground was broken for the new church building. In April 1957, the footing was poured for the foundation and we began laying blocks in May. Brother John Winston was the contractor laying the blocks and Bro. Philemon Hill donated $1100 for the inside work on the building. On the fourth Friday night in June 1959, the first baptizing were Sisters Margaret Fox and Grace Anderson, Brothers Otis B. Weatherless and George Farrington, Jr. On the first Sunday in May 1960, our church was completed, and we marched from the old building to the present building to worship and praise God. Our special guest for that day was Rev. Hill’s brother, Rev. Thomas Hill from Philadelphia Pennsylvania, and his church family. During a church fellowship visit, Rev. Walter Downes suggested that the name be changed from Nazarene Baptist Church to the Greater Nazarene Baptist Church. The church continued to progress under Rev. Hill’s leadership – new pews, hymnals, rails, for the front steps, and Ditts machine were purchased. Ethel Hill donated the floodlights and Grace Bray Burruss donated a bulletin board. Rev. James Hill organized the junior church and Sis. Elizabeth Hill Taylor organized a junior Missionary Circle. On the first Sunday in July 1967, Brenda and Jacquelin Brent were baptized and united with the church. That Sunday ended with ministerial career of a great and progressive leader of the flock. On July 5, 1967 Rev. Elijah Hill passed into eternal rest. On March 16, 1969, Rev. Louis R. Blakey, Sr. was elected as the pastor of this church. He worked hard and sincerely in performing his ministerial duties. Some of the tangible evidence of his progress were: water cooler installed, central air conditioning, an organ, erected a pastor’s study, and carpeting on the floor of each wing. Also under his leadership, Rev. Thomas Winston was licensed to the ministry, Deacon Felix Allen was ordained, and Sister Catherine Dabney elected as the first financial secretary of the church.


1975 - 2000

In September 1975, Rev. Blakey ended his tenure as pastor by a letter of resignation. He left Nazarene debt free. On June 13, 1976, Rev. Rufus Adkins, Jr. was installed as pastor. He presented a full program in our church. He organized several choirs and usher boards as well as having services every Sunday. Under Rev. Adkins’ leadership, the following members were the first to be elected by the church and duly recorded in the Circuit Court of the Commonwealth of Hanover County, VA. as trustees of this church: Deacon Herbert Allen, Edwin Allen, Sr., Cortez Allen, Phillip Fox, Sr., Brothers James L. Weatherless, who was also superintendent of Sunday School and chairman of the Trustee Board, Thomas Allen, Sisters Catherine Dabney, Martha A. Price, and Carolyn T. Hobson Dabney. While serving as Pastor, 7 Deacons and 7 Deaconesses were added to our boards – Deacons Edward Nash, Maurice Weatherless, Leroy Banks, William Bassette, John Morris, Jr., Anthony Morris, and Gregory Morris; Deaconesses Cora Allen, Doris Morris, Doris Paige, Elizabeth Taylor, Ann Bray, Catherine Dabney, and Jeanette Bassette. In 1980, we entered into a building program. A hired architect drew the blueprints. For our new addition and we had the land cleared for the dining hall. In 1987, Bro. John Morris, Sr. was ordained as a Deacon and Sis. Bernice Nash was installed as a Deaconess. Rev. Adkins delivered his last sermon for our congregation on September 16, 1990. He will not only be missed in our church, but also in the community where he represented our families at Board of Supervisors meetings and helped to have the secondary roads paved for better travel. On May 3, 1991, Rev. Lorenzo Nicholson, Sr. was installed as our 14th pastor. Under his leadership, our children’s church was organized, the church’s sanctuary was renovated, the Saints in Praise and Rejoice choirs were organized, radio ministry, and a van ministry. Sisters Patricia Humphrey and Doris Paige and Bro. Clay Cofield were licensed to the ministry under Rev. Nicholson. Bro. Milton Winston, Sr. was ordained to the Deacon’s Ministry and Sis. Jean Winston was installed into the Deaconess Ministry, along with Sis. Doris Brown and Sis. Florence Moore. In 1994, our dining hall was renovated into classrooms and a Pastor’s Study. In June 1998, Rev. Thomas Winston, Rev. Jeanette Epps, and Rev. Clay Cofield were ordained. Rev. Nicholson delivered his last sermon on the 4th Sunday in October 1998. On July 25, 1999, the Reverend Earl B. Hall, Sr. was installed as our 15th pastor. Under the leadership of Pastor Hall and his wife Almon, we have truly been blessed. Pastor Hall has presented a full program to our church family with the goal and vision that God has given him. Greater Nazarene had begun to actively participate in the Baptist General Convention; Pastor Hall has reorganized the various ministries and instilled in the body new insight to no longer have auxiliaries or organizations, but ministries. There are five main ministries in which all ministries fall under: they are Proclamation, Evangelism, Worship, Fellowship, and Teaching. He has also implemented that all ministries began their meetings with Bible teaching. The church now has new financial and budgeting procedures in place. We have purchased a new piano. Also under the Pastor Hall’s leadership many souls have been converted and new members (disciples) have been added to our fellowship. Since Pastor Hall has been our pastor, he has baptized 24 souls and all new converts were given bibles.


2000 - 2020

Pastor Hall became our full-time pastor in June of 2000 and in April the church hired its first part-time secretary, Jolinda Smith. In January 2001, the church started its building fund drive to expand the existing church building. A building fund goal of $600,000 was set for the new building expansion, which will include a fellowship hall and classrooms. On March 11, 2001, Pastor Hall and the church consecrated Sisters Virginia Joshua, Earline Morris, Yolanda Morris, Doris Wingfield, and Peggy Wingfield as Deaconesses. Under Pastor Hall’s leadership on March 25, 2001, Rev. Aletha W. Lee was licensed to the preaching ministry. Further, Pastor Hall organized and implemented a Church-wide Institute, which is held annually during the month of October. The institute focuses on the Old and New Testament writings with emphasis on Doctrine, Authorship, Dating, and Theological reflections. A Deacon’s Family Ministry has been organized by Pastor Hall, for the purpose of each deacon ministering to assigned members of the church body. In the year 2002, Pastor Hall set the theme, “Pressing Through In the Presence and Power of God, While Praising Him All the Day Long.” This theme was set to focus on praise and worship, and Christian growth. The church birthed two new ministries. Under the leadership of Sis. Geneva Ellis, the Church Interest Ministry was formed. This is a ministry that supports all existing ministries of the church. This ministry was instrumental on starting Wednesday Early Morning Prayer and Mid-Day Bible Study. The E-Ministry under Rev. Anthony Ellis’ leadership was also formed. This includes the church’s web page and the use of emerging technology to minister to the people of God. The church also continues to participate in various missions and outreach such as CARITAS, a program for the homeless and the Baptist Children’s Home of Virginia, in addition to many other helps provided to the needy. Discipleship and evangelism still remains a high priority for this local congregation of believers in Christ. This church’s office has been equipped with the necessary hardware, software, and other technology needed to manage the administrative affairs of the church. The church now has an after-school tutoring program for all school-aged youth and it is held two days each week during the school year. The church has also, put new shingles on the annex, painted the annex, purchased new drums, new tables, installed three new air conditioning units in the sanctuary, and upgraded the sound system with drop down microphones in the choir stand. The church has included GNBC’s Family and Friends Day as an annual event that took place in the month of April. 2003-06 In 2003, the church installed a new heat pump in the annex, new carpet in the vestibule, in the hallway leading to the annex, and in the hallway of the offices. In April, the balance owed on the new air conditioner units in the sanctuary was paid off. Front doors were tinted and more interior painting was done. The church has established an Internal Audit Committee, which consist of these members: Sisters Marilyn Hembrick, Almon Hall, Melissa Farrington, and Deacon Milton Winston, Sr. Two of our Associate Ministers have been called to pastor. Rev. Anthony and wife Geneva Ellis have left to pastor Emmaus Baptist Church in North, VA; and Elder Johnnie and Linda Brown have been called to start their own ministry. The Greater Nazarene Baptist Church was blessed in 2004 to have Moses Allen and Delano Hall express an interest to join our fellowship. Pastor Hall was honored to license his son-in-law, LeMar Bowers, into the ministry of preaching the gospel. The new carpeting for the vestibule and annex was paid in full. We thanked Bro. Andrew Howard for painting the exterior window framing in preparation for our annual Homecoming and Revival services. Brother Junius Dabney, Sister Mary Curtis Darden, and Brother Richard Curtis Green went home to be with the Lord. In February, the church secretary, Sister Jolinda Smith resigned and was replaced by Sister Melanie Bowers.In 2005, the church was blessed with new choir robes, two new furnaces and a new heat pump, as well as having the sanctuary repainted for Homecoming and Revival. Our church was granted loan approval to purchase the five-acre George G. Holmes estate located next to the church. In September, we asphalted the church parking lot. Sister Cynthia Hall was licensed to preach in January 2005 and Brother Larry Peatross began training for the Diaconate Ministry. In November, the church originated a bank loan to purchase the five-acre George G. Holmes Estate, to pay for the two new heat pumps and to pave the parking lot. Two trustees, Reverend Aletha Lee and Brother Phillip Brashear, resigned and two new trustees, Brother Larry Farrington and Brother Wayne Lee, were added. Brother Brashear resigned due to military duties in Iraq. We had one marriage at the church, Lorenzo Weatherless and his wife Kimberly. The wedding was officiated by former pastor, Reverend Rufus Atkins. Three babies were born into the GNBC family, Makhi Jakari Wilson, dedicated in August, son of Milton Parker, Jr. and Levada Wilson, Jaeden Simone Smith, born to Dennis and Jolinda Smith, and Damon Clifton Gibson, grandson of Crystal Tucker. Four youth were baptized Darryl Hunter, Tevon Tucker, Tamara Peatross, and Anthony Wallace and two members re-dedicated their lives to Christ, Brother Gee Crawford and Brother Michael Moore. We lost two members in death - Brother George Washington and Deaconess Doris Brown. Also, Pastor Hall was elected as Moderator of the Chickahominy Baptist Association, Deacon Maurice Weatherless was re-elected President of the CBA Men’s Division and Treasurer, and Sister Victoria Lee, President of the Youth and Young Adult Division. Anthony Morris, Jr. (AJ) left to fulfill military obligations in Iraq. 2006 brought with it some very special blessings. On April 4, 2006, we were given clear title and the deed to the five acres next to the church and we now own the land. By our 106th Church Anniversary, GNBC had already paid 12% of the principal balance of our loan. We had new members to join, Brother Eric Taylor, Dr. Grace Norbrey, Brother Fritz Hunt, and Pastor Hall baptized Brother Larry Peatross. We celebrated two wedding vow renewals. Deacon Phillip and Deaconess Margaret Fox renewed their vows celebrating 63 years of marriage and Deacon John Sr. and Deaconess Doris Morris, renewed their vows celebrating 50 years of marriage. Both ceremonies were beautiful and truly blessed. 2006 also brought us some tears. Two very special members went home to be with the Lord, Little Miss Olivia Morris, the daughter of Deacon Gregory and Deaconess Yolanda Morris, and sister of Christalyn Morris and Deaconess Elizabeth Taylor, daughter of one of our founders, Reverend Elijah Hill. They both will be truly missed, along with all of our previously deceased members who were very dear to us. But God is good and His mercy is everlasting. Praise the Lord! 2007-2010 On January 14, 2007, one more deacon was added to our Deacon’s ministry. Bro. Larry Peatross was ordained. We welcomed 10 new members to our fellowship in 2007. Sorrowfully, we lost one member to death. Brother Junious “Todd” Grantley passed away in February. Three more ministries were birthed under Pastor Hall’s leadership. They are the Emergency Food Ministry led by First Lady Almon Hall, the Grief Management Support led by Reverend Cynthia Hall, and the Young Adult Ministry led by Reverend Edna Grier. Our foreign mission outreach began to expand with visitations by two native missionaries. On the fourth Sunday in March, Bishop Deo Mwamba and his wife Sarah from the Central African Republic, along with Elder Gary Dorcus a representative from Advancing Native Missions (ANM) shared with us at our 10:00 AM morning worship service. Bishop Mwamba gave his testimony and preached. We also hosted a native missionary from Ghana, Africa on the fifth Sunday in September, Rockeybell Adatura, accompanied by Reverend Oliver Asher, ANM Chief of Operations. Greater Nazarene is committed to missions at home and abroad. Brother Phillip Brashear returned home from active duty in Iraq and has been reinstated as a trustee. In June, Pastor Hall resigned as Moderator of the Chickahominy Baptist Association. God is still blessing Nazarene, even in 2008. Sorrowfully we lost several members in death. The first was in January, one of our faithful members, Sister Virginia Irene Terry. In April four converts were baptized by Pastor Hall — Izaiah Bowers, Joèl Bowers, Emanuel Brown and Britieney Moore. Sister Bernice Johnson also became a member. Rev. Edna Grier, Jasmine and Terrance Grier moved their membership, as did Sister Susie Stewart, John and Karla Taylor. Rev. LeMar, Melanie, Izaiah and Joèl Bowers also moved their membership. On May 18, 2008, Pastor Hall as given an honorary doctorate degree from the Infinity Bible Seminary in Richmond, Virginia for his years of Christian service and work in the community. In July, God called home Brother Isaac Allen, Jr. and Sister Carolyn Dabney (who was in service at Brown Grove Baptist Church when she passed). In August, our oldest deacon, Deacon Phillip Fox, Sr., was called home to glory and Brother Moses Curtis passed in September. Through all the sadness, we’re still standing. Our Young Adult Ministry (YAM) is now under the direction of Reverend Aletha Lee. They have visited the shut-in and done other great things for the Lord. Reverend Cynthia Hall and Sister Geneva Ellis began working with our Single’s Ministry. Other points of interest for the record: the church, under the leadership of our Women’s Ministry, purchased a new stove for the kitchen; our old marquee was torn down; and a new security system was installed. As we closed out 2008, on December 31, New Chestnut Baptist Church and Nazarene had a joint Watchnight Service. It was truly a blessing to come together with our sister church. Their pastor, Rev. William Wright preached the word of God as the new year entered in. Another year 2009 has embarked upon us, and God is still moving by His Spirit. We have lost one member since last year. Brother Robert Lee Bray was called to his heavenly home in January. Also in January, Pastor Hall baptized three new converts. God blessed our deaconess ministry on March 22 as Rev. Hall consecrated six new deaconesses: Sisters Bernice Johnson, Hattie Weatherless, Marilyn Hembrick, Cindy Peatross, Arletha Winston and Dr. Grace Norbrey. We thank the Lord for all of them. Also in July our new marquee was put in place as well as the expansion of our dining hall. Thanks to Pastor Hall for coordinating the marquee project and moving forward and selecting colors. Our neighbor Robert Thatcher did the brick work for the marquee at no expense to the church. Deacon John Morris, Sr. and Brother Welton Hembrick did the electrical work. In addition, Trustees Thomas Allen, Phillip Brashear and Larry Farrington; along with Deacons Gregory Morris and John Morris, Jr. also contributed in working on the marquee. Nazarene is truly blessed to have willing and abled men of the church to donate their time and talent as the work went forward to expand our dining hall. God bless them, especially Deacon John Morris, Sr. for his overseeing the expansion and doing much of the work. Our Missionary ministry began sending a monthly financial donation to foreign mission —Advancing Native Mission (ANM) — in support of four Ethiopian pastors who are spreading the good news of Christ and continuing to do missionary work through evangelism.Beginning in November, Rev. Cynthia Hall had purposed in her heart that the church start recognizing our seniors and shut-in members. Her vision was called the “King and Queen Corner” in our church bulletin. Each third Sunday we would briefly recognize a member as “Queen for a Day” or “King for a Day.” In January 2010, Rev. LeMar Bowers, Melanie, Izaiah and Joél Bowers reunited with this fellowship. In February we lost one of our members, Brother Douglas Green and then in March, his brother Lawrence Green went home to be with the Lord. Also, after 15 years as serving as our Missionary president, Deaconess Arletha Winston resigned. Sister Jolinda Smith is serving as acting president until election of officers. On March 21, associate ministers Rev. Cynthia Hall and Rev. Aletha Lee were ordained into the preaching ministry. In April two converts came forth to join our fellowship — Shayla Wilkerson (baptized on the first Sunday in July) and Robert Hobson came by Christian Experience. They both received the Right-hand of Fellowship the first Sunday in July. The first Sunday in May, 81 new “African-American Heritage” hymnals were dedicated to the Lord. This hymnal replacement project was spear-headed by our YAM ministry. Our old red hymnals were donated to the Bread of Life Ministry, pastored by Rev. Patricia Humphrey. A lot of additions/repairs have been made during the summer. In July, Deacon John Morris, Sr. installed 12 new windows in the fellowship hall and around the church. Deacon John Morris, Jr. assisted in this work. Brother Welton Hembrick donated and installed a ceiling fan in our kitchen. We have purchased two new speakers and four new mics to enhance our sound system in the sanctuary. The first Sunday in November 2010, 72 NKJV pew bibles were dedicated and placed in the pews. This bible replacement project was also spear-headed by our YAM ministry. 2011-12 We saw a need for prayer warriors to intercede every Sunday morning before service, so after much prayer, an Intercessory Prayer Ministry began praying every Sunday beginning at 9:45 a.m. They were also available at any time before or after service for those needing prayer. The ministry warriors that God put in place are Rev. Aletha Lee, Sisters Geneva Dabney and Amy Wilkerson, Deacon Larry Peatross, and Deaconess Bernice Johnson. God is truly blessing us spiritually and raising this ministry to higher heights. Mention should be made that the third Saturday in August, the Rejoice Choir celebrated with a Rejoice Reunion, inviting all former choir members and musicians back to lift up the name of the Jesus in song. In the month of December, close to the Christmas holidays, our Missionaries partnered with New Highland Baptist Church and served and ministered to a CARITAS group. We served dinner on a Friday evening and on Christmas morning we came back and served them breakfast. What a blessed time! As God continues to bless this church body and as we look ahead into 2012, as hearts and minds will be focused on mission. Our theme for 2012 which is also the Baptist General Convention’s theme — “Be the C.H.U.R.C.H.” The scripture references to back this up comes from Micah 6:8; Luke 4:18-19. In January, God called another faithful woman of God home to be with Him. Sister Ellen Parker went on to glory in January 2012. Laminated bookmarks with passed out to every member — one side with church officials and the other side the church mission statement and vision. Enlarged laminated posters with our vision and mission statements were also posted around the church. While God was calling home a few of our members, He was also bringing in new members. One project that was completed through pledges by our members was the re-surfacing and re-striping of our parking lot. The resurfacing was done in August. Bro. Donald Williams was led to involve himself in educating our young people with music. He graciously purchased and donated to the church various instruments such as drums, harmonicas, cymbals, flute, electric and acoustic guitars, just to name a few. He and Rev. Aletha Lee worked diligently and came up with the GNBC Musical Youth Initiative Ministry. The purpose was to give rise to and develop musicians from within the congregation with the intent of forming a church band that will one day become an orchestra. The first lessons started in September. An opportunity to witness and evangelize was made possible through Richmond Sportsbackers. Our church parking lot was used as an “aid station” to hundreds of bike riders passing through as they rode in the Richmond Marathon. This event took place the first Saturday in October. For our 112th church anniversary, we also celebrated Pastor Hall’s 13th pastoral anniversary. It was his preference to celebrate his anniversary in October instead of the actual date of fourth Sunday in July. One of our former members came back to the flock, Minister Kevin Clarke, who received the Right-hand of Fellowship today, the first Sunday in October. In November, another child of God went home to be with the Lord, Sister Josephine Curtis. 2013 Another year is here, and God is still looking down on this little church on the side of Georgetown Road. Great things He is still doing for us. Our 2013 Theme: Trusting the Lord through His Word, as we worship, witness and work together for the advancement of the Kingdom of God. The scripture reference—Proverbs 3:5-6 A new ministry was birthed – Health Ministry, led by Sis. Almon Hall. This year we lost seven members: Sister Dorothy Weatherless (February); Dr. Grace Norbrey (March); Bro. Curtis Thornton (March); Sister Beatrice Washington (June); Bro. Tillman Adams (September); Brother Isaac Allen (October); and Bro. Nelson Toliver, Sr. (November). Though God was calling His children home, He was blessing us with one new convert, Rashard Thornton who was baptized and received the Right-hand of Fellowship on the first Sunday in September. We had one baby dedication in August – Little Miss Amyah Morris (born in Germany), daughter of Anthony Jr. and LaTosha Morris. 2014 All honor, glory and praise is given to our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. There were several deaths, baby dedications, marriage ceremonies that took place this year. Rev. Hall officiated ------ The MMCE scheduled two Church-wide institutes this year – one in the spring and the other in the fall. We also started a mid-day bible study that would accommodate our seniors and members who worked at night. That began in March and lasted six months. We had two converts join the fellowship by baptism, Micah Dabney (June) and Alaina Howard (April). One of our former members rededicated his life through Christian experience. We were glad to welcome back Ricardo Green in February. Again, as new members were added to the fellowship, we lost a few members in death: John Bray (January); our dear associate minister, Evangelist Dr. Doris Paige (April); Derrik Hall (October); and Larry King (November). While our church body continue to worship God in spirit and in truth, the state was about to make some changes in the laws…same sex marriage. We held a special by-law meeting in October to change the church’s bylaws making a stand against this law. The purpose of the meeting was to take action on an amendment to our Constitution and Bylaws. It was the Statement of Faith, Marriage and Sexuality. Vote was unanimous. Our pastor and ordained ministers now have the right to refuse to perform such marriage ceremonies. Again, God has kept us through another year and we give Him all the glory. Here we are now, 2015. One hundred and fifteen years that God has kept us and we’re still Christ-connected. We lost three members in death, Curtis Wingfield, Margo Marks (November) and Deaconess Bernice Pannell (December). In April, one baby dedication, Josiah Edward Morris, the son of Anthony and LaTosha Morris who reside in Texas. One convert, Alaina Howard, was baptized. Work is continuing to be done to upkeep the building – inside and out. We give thanks to our trustees and others who have worked tirelessly to oversee various projects. A music scholarship has been established to honor the memory of Evangelist Doris Paige. Her family solicited donations and plan to have annual programs to bring in more monies. The kickoff was held the second Sunday in March. Civitas Health Services, owned and operated by LeMar and Melanie Bowers, donated eight security cameras that were installed all around the church grounds. We thank God for them. 2016-19 We are still standing. God is still smiling on us…a little church on side of Georgetown Road. We have lost a few members along the way as well as welcomed a few. Bro. Lloyd Taylor passed in August and Sister Goldie Hobson passed in November 2016. Our Ethel Hill Scholarship Committee has been blessing our graduates over the years. At this point more than 30 recipients have received a full scholarship or stipend and we continue to have fundraising programs Brother Kevin Thornton rededicated his life to Christ in July; Arthur and Rev. Patricia Humphrey came back and rejoined us in September; and Kiara Weatherless was baptized in October. In 2017, we began looking at the church building with more work to be done. We had fundraisers to purchase new stained-glass windows as well as family pledges to offset the cost. and we have paid off our mortgage and had a special Mortgage-burning service in October 2017. We started the grant application process with Oldham Little Church Foundation to get monies for edifice facelift. Another ministry was birthed this year – Ladies on a Mission led by Sis. Geneva Dabney. We had one death – Deaconess Jeanette Smith who was called home on her birthdate -June 17; Sister Deborah Mealy joined our fellowship by rededicating her life to church in September. Our new windows were installed in April 2018. Sadly, we lost a mighty man of God, chairman of our Deacons’ ministry for many years, Dea. John Morris, Sr. He worked tirelessly in the church and also within the Georgetown Community. He was a “Jack of All Trades.” He was funeralized in July at St. Peter’s Baptist Church (because of space) and buried in our church cemetery. We had one convert, Pastor Hall’s granddaughter Briana Hall who was baptized in November. In 2019, while waiting the outcome of our grant decision, praise God we were awarded with a $8,000 grant from Oldham Little Church Foundation to replace carpeting in sanctuary and choir loft. Our interior work was divided into two phases: the window replacement and new carpeting/pews. Our carpeting was installed later in the year. Another sad year for our church family, another beautiful soul has been called home – Deaconess Doris Morris – president of our Deaconess ministry for many years until her health began to fail. She was funeralized and buried here in May. Rev. Hall celebrated his 20th anniversary as pastor on July 28, 2019 with a celebratory banquet held at American Legion Post 175 in Mechanicsville. Rev. Dr. Ray McKenzie was our guest preacher. In October will be celebrating 119 years in God’s service.

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2022 - Present

It's 2020. God is still good. After the 3rd Sunday in March, our church doors were shut. We are now in a COVID-19 worldwide deadly pandemic. People were dying everyday by the hundreds and thousands. It has been a challenging time for all of us. Family members, friends, and a few in the CBA community have passed from this dreadful virus. Through it all, God is still in control. We kept the communication lines open for Wednesday night bible study and Sunday morning church school and worship via teleconferencing for many months. We put a Covid Team in place to implement guidelines and protocols (including CDC guidelines) for persons entering and exiting the church for business purposes only; as well as preparation to go back in person for worship. A media ministry has been birthed. We did lose three members through sickness, Sister Naomi Lewis in August, Deaconess Bernice Johnson in September, and Associate Minister Rev. Cynthia Hall. Our new pews as well as new choir chairs were also installed in September. We went from all red to all royal blue – carpeting and pews. In December, Rev. Hall announced that he would be retiring as pastor at the end of August 2021 after teaching, preaching and spreading the gospel diligently for 22 years. 2021-22 We are still worshipping and praising God via teleconference and now Zoom. We had two drive-up services. One was Resurrection Sunday when as gave the Right-hand of Fellowship to our two new members by Christian Experience Sisters Emily Allen and Muriel Beth Hopkins, and the other Mother’s Day. Our doors reopened for in-person worship on Father’s Day, the 3rd Sunday in June, but Zoom is still an option. Sadly, two of our faithful members passed from earth to glory. Deaconess Peggy Wingfield (March) and Sister Gale Brooks (April) both deceased from Covid. It was a sad time for us, but we kept the faith and encouraged each other through it all. Pastor Hall and First Lady Almon Hall celebrated 22 years as pastor and first lady on the fourth Sunday in July. A truly blessed worship experience with Dr. Don Hayes as our special guest minister for AM worship. We are now in August and on the fifth Sunday, Pastor Earl B. Hall, Sr., will be retiring as pastor after his last sermon. Now in 2022, as we continue to get back to some normalcy, we are still praising God in-person as well as on Zoom and we are searching for a new pastor. A search committee has been put in place. Nearly two dozen applications came in. The committee scaled the candidates down to 9 and then to the final four for members to cast their vote. The church cast ballots for our new Pastor-elect. Rev. Delano Medley was elected and called to be our 16th pastor. On the first Sunday in October 2022, Rev. Delano Medley preached his first sermon as pastor-elect. We did lose few members in death – one who should be mentioned, our oldest deaconess, Margaret Fox.

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