Logan Street First Baptist Church
November 8, 2015
“One Hundred Twenty Years of Consecrated Service”
Motto: The Church with a Distinctive Christian Witness
Nestled between mountains in the Tug River Valley of the historically famous Mingo County, First Baptist Church began to play her role 120 years ago. Although sin, vice and human injustices were rampart, First Church was established in a dance hall on Third Avenue, Williamson. Reverend S. L. Tucker and a faithful few organized and founded this church. It was called First Church because it was the only church, indeed the first church, in the area.
Though her given name has changed several times our church has never ceased to strive for the betterment of her members and the community. Logan Street First Baptist Church stands today as a tower of strength, a refuge and a Church of the Living God.
The Church’s mission is to fulfill the “Great Commission of Jesus Christ, through preaching, teaching and healing. Logan Street First Baptist Church supports and encourages Christian evangelism, home and foreign missions and Christian education, through its various auxiliaries and programs.
Logan Street First Baptist Church has had her ups and downs, but her songs, prayers and preaching have never faltered. When the church parsonage burned in the mid-forties, the Rev. L. A. Perkins and the members soon located and purchased a new parsonage at 972 East Fourth Ave. The parsonage had become rented property in recent years and because of the financial liability of its up-keep, the parsonage was sold in 2004.
By 1950, church attendance had increased to the point where the sanctuary was too small to accommodate its members. Feeling the blessing was still upon church started a program of God to raise funds to renovate and enlarge our edifice.
Church services and meetings were held in temporary quarters once the remodeling had begun. However, in 1954, we were able to move back into the regular building for services. 1961, church as re-dedicated as Logan Street First Baptist Church.
Our previous leaders have been Reverend, Dr. Roosevelt Hooks, serving twenty-three years until his death December 19. 1990; Reverend S. w. Williams, two and one half years; Reverend A. L. McCrory, seven years; Reverend L. A. Perkins, thirty-four years, and Reverends Tucker, Carter, Howard and Cotterell. Reverend Gerald Dotson became our pastor on April 21, 1991.
Under the leadership of Reverend Dotson, the church has seen many changes: the institution of a Youth Sermon during Sunday morning worship service, the purchase of a copier machine, new lighting and new carpeting in the lower auditorium, the installation of a new heating and cooling system (2 units), re shingled church, made some architectural changes for better drainage, purchased new microwave oven, vacuum cleaner, legal, fire-proof file cabinet, computer and printer with “Internet” access, dehumidifier for the church office, new tables and chairs in the lower auditorium, television and television monitor stand, program DVD player, shelving for Bible Bowl trophies, new hymnal for the pews, instituted an Pre for the academic achievement and outstanding character of our youth each grading period for pre-K through high school, made it possible for our youth to make a two-day educational and entertaining trip to King’s Island” and to COSI Scientific Museum in Ohio, to St. to see the “Passion Play,” to Chief Logan State Park to see the outdoor drama, “Cinderella,” trip to “Water Ways” Recreation Park.
Logan Street First Baptist Church, through the Sunday school, competed in the Tug River District Bible Bowl Contest, annually, for approximately twenty years. Our young people were successful and had the opportunity to represent the District at Hill Top, many times. They were First Place State winners in 2001, 2002, 2003 and 2005. They were “First-Runner Up” in 2004 and 2007. Logan Street First Baptist Church supplemented the State funds to send members of the Bible Bowl Team to the National Congress in 2002, 2003 and 2005.
Logan First Baptist Church sponsored several blood drives beginning in 1995, the year of our 100th Church Anniversary, through various the local chapter American Red Cross, participated in food drives to feed the needy through various organizations, community service projects and sponsored Men’s Prayer Breakfast.
The church’s mission is realized through its evangelistic ministry as it witnesses, proclaiming the message of John 3:16. A strong effort was made, through the missionary organizations of the church, prior to the Spring Revival of 2006 and 2007 as the members canvassed our neighborhoods with tracts, bookmarks printed with the “beatitudes”, and other information. This evangelistic community outreach has become an annual ministry of the Church.
The mission of the Church is further realized, as it extends its outreach through other ministries. Annual visits are made to the local nursing home and skilled nursing facility to provide services and Christmas caroling, cards, and on occasion small, floral arrangements for the residents.
For a number of years, the Church has given Christmas Tokens to the Senior Citizens and “Sick and in” persons in our Church and Community in the form of a fruit basket.
Beginning in the spring of 2011, a weekly program of visitation to the homes of “sick and shut in persons in our community was instituted by Rev. Dotson. Several persons make up the visitation team. It has proven to be very successful and rewarding to all involved.
The church, through the efforts of the Rose of Mission, sponsors programs annually and in of Black History on outstanding women of West American Heart a Prevention presented along to the congregation, and Breast Fire Safety and Prevention with the local firemen speaking to the congregation, and Breast Cancer Awareness and Prevention, and others.
The church edifices are always beautifully and appropriately decorated throughout the year as well is each special occasion.
Vacation Bible School, sponsored through the Christian Education Department of the Church, has been viable ministry for more than years, having been well established under such educators as the late Dr. Drue E. Culumns, Dean of Christian Education, and the late Ethel B. M Superintendent, the latter for whom the Church Library is named.
In recent years, the VBS has adopted a community service project that the students implement during the week school. One of the first projects, the collection of pop can “tabs” for use by the Ronald McDonald House, has become an on-going project of our church with the idea being brought by our pastor’s wife, Mrs. Evonne Dotson.
The 2011 project involved the making of 85 beautiful floral arrangements for the local nursing home residents, who were delighted and very appreciative. In 2012, the school was engaged in a canned food drive, donating to a local agency that provides meals for the less fortunate. “Thank You” cards were made by the students to honor our Veterans during VBS 2013, and sent to friends and family members locally and out of town. VBS took on the foreign mission project of helping orphans in Mexico through a generous donation to 2013 and in the collection of box tops for our schools and beautiful cross wall hanging for our sick-and shut in.
Students, staff and their families invited in September a Celebration Reunion, an evening of indoor and outdoor activities, food and fellowship at the church which has become an annual event. DvDs were made of photos and were showcased during the 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014 and 2015 events respectively.
During 2001, a Scholarship Program was established to assist the students of program on-going is Church who are pursing in of higher learning. The exception of one who proudly served twelve young people of our congregation, all of whom, with the exception of one who is this currently enrolled in such programs of study, are pursuing their careers.
The Church opened its doors more than thirty years ago to become a satellite of the WV Baptist State Convention Seminary Extension Program, offering an opportunity for members of the Tug River District Churches and community to enroll in programs of study in educational and for pastoral ministries. In years, the Church has “invested” in its membership and “underwritten” the program by covering them for those members of the Church who enroll in the seminary extension classes. A number of our members are graduates of the Seminary Extension Program.
Major renovations to the church were started in August 2001. The church has been re-roofed, with necessary structural changes made. The old rafters have been replaced with a new one. A new interior ceiling has been installed in the Sanctuary and the walls have been painted. In 2004, the church roof was recovered with a metal roof, due to problems with the existing one.
During 2002, the church’s fourteen beautiful stained glass windows were repaired and restored. This project included the windows in the baptistery, also. These fourteen windows were repainted and covered the exclusive Flex-span Installation System to maintain their “life.”
Other improvements have been made in the Ethel Thompson Church Library, the ladies lounge and the front doors of the church have been replaced. New folding chairs were purchased for the lower auditorium by the Nannie B. Perkins Guild, the computer and copier were upgraded in 2006 and the church office beautifully renovated in 2007. A new, state-of-the art sound system was installed in 2007, enhancing our worship services.
A pictorial church directory was released in 2007, with current members and their families, receiving a copy along with many former members.
A beautiful church steeple, selected by the congregation to replace the original bell tower, was ready for installation in 2010, having been delivered and in time for the 115 Anniversary. However, “unanticipated” installation problems were encountered preventing the placing of that steeple.
The Trustee Board Church in upon the vision and recommendation of Rev. Dotson, had two interior chair lifts installed to make accessibility to the upper auditorium more feasible for those who may need assistance. The chair lifts have already proven “their worth”.
Over the years, the upper level entry concrete porch, the wooden door to the entry way beneath the porch and the glass panels on either side of the door way had become worn and in a state of much needed repair. In the summer of 2012, the Church through the Trustee Board had a new concrete porch “poured, a new steel door installed and the glass panels replaced with brick for more stability and added security.
Projects that became a reality in 2013 are the installation of carpeting in the lower auditorium with carpeting and tile flooring in the upper auditorium and the placing of new Bibles in our pews, which were dedicated during the 118th Anniversary.
In 2014, exterior work was done on the gable and roof system to provide further insulation and to prevent future water damage. In an attempt to correct and prevent further damage on the exterior as well as the interior, caused by inadequate drainage in the rear of the church, a major project of sealing the building and providing for drainage was undertaken. A dehumidifier was purchased for both the upper and lower auditoriums.
Other future projects are the installation of an audio visual system in the upper auditorium and the professional cleaning of the church furniture, paneling, chandeliers, and windows.
A Committee was appointed by Rev. Dotson at the December 2008 Church Meeting to begin work on writing a “Constitution” for Logan Street First Baptist Church, as an original document was unable to be located The Committee presented a completed “Draft” of the “Constitution to the Church at its quarterly Church Business Meeting of September 14, 2010. The Church membership was provided a copy of the Draft and asked to review the Document for approval in June 2011. After revisions, the Constitution was adopted at the quarterly church business meeting of June 12, 2012. It has been printed and distributed to the membership.
Logan Street First Baptist Church was placed in 2006 on the National Registry of Historic Places of the United States Department of the Interior National Park Service, having been within the confines of the area cited as the “Williamson Historic District.” The Church is having a plaque made for the exterior the building to honor this distinction
We are faithful in our support of both the Tug River District Baptist Association and its Auxiliaries and of the WV Baptist State Convention and its programs, fulfilling our financial obligations, supporting the financial campaigns, playing our part in the 2001 Campaign of the Convention to retire the mortgage, in the 2003-04 Fund of Rene Project to rebuild the “Perkins” Dormitory, and in contributing over one thousand dollars to the 2005 Hurricane Relief Fund of the WVBSC/NBC, USA, Inc. The WVBSc has presented the Church with several plaques in recognition of its outstanding financial support of the work of the Convention. Logan Street First Baptist Church is in “good standing” and a “voting member” of the National Baptist Convention, USA. Incorporated.
In addition, Logan Street First Baptist Church made a generous contribution during the Spring of 2012 through a local church to disaster victims had experienced tornados in the Eastern Kentucky area and most recently to the American Red Cross for disaster relief of those suffering, primarily in New York Jersey along the Atlantic Coast, in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy in early November 2012. In 2013, Church voted to give to the American Red Cross on a quarterly basis.
Other charitable donations made on an annual basis with some, quarterly: the Harry L Joyce West for Youth, the Greater Williamson Area Ministerial Association, The American Cancer Society Relay for Life; The March of Dimes, The Williamson Branch NAACP and Youth Council Scholarship Fund. Hunters Helping the Hungry WV DNR. Williamson Redevelopment Authority-AmeriCorps Volunteers
In 2013, Pastor Dotson, asked that we take on 2 community service projects on a continual basis in un 2013 in addition to the year- round collection of the pop can tabs for the Ronald McDonald House, Charleston. December canned food drive would be replaced with a year-round canned food drive that would provide a regular basis for feeding the hungry in our community. The other was to give support, made possible through generous, personal donations, to a community agency helping those in need. The agency receiving the canned food is Jacob’s Well, downtown Williamson. Monetary rapport is given to Christian Help of Mingo County, founded in 1994, based in Kermit, respond to situations of emergency or dire need with immediacy and simplicity, respecting the dignity of all in the spirit of Jesus Christ.
A Children’s Ministry became a reality in 2015, making it available to families with children that attend our morning worships. The children, following the Children’s Sermon, are invited to engage in further learning and Christian education experiences while their parents participate in the regular worship service. 2012, 2013, 2014 and 2015 Logan Street First Baptist Church received several new members, coming to our congregation on Christian Experience and by Baptism. We have been richly blessed by blessed by their fellowship and inspired by testimonies of faith. Their joining with us, oh, ye saints of the Lord, “how firm a foundation is laid for your faith in His excellent Word” and by those who have gone before us! With such leadership and membership, devoted to the cause of Christ, Logan Street First Baptist Church continues to stand. A Bible-believing, a Bible-teaching Church, she stands in the name of Christ!
Let us encourage one another and “pace” ourselves, enduring to the end, as we witness and share the Good News of the Lord! Witnessing is our responsibility (l Peter 3:5). The results are God’s, as only Christ can save. A witnessing church is a growing church. “Give thanks to the Lord, because He is good, and His love is eternal.” (Psalm 118:1)
“Give and it shall be given unto you; pressed down, and shaken together, and running over, shall men give into your bosom or with the same measure that ye mete withal: it shall be measured to you again. Luke 6:38