Macedonia Missionary Baptist Church
“The Church Where Love is the Prevailing Factor”
The first Macedonia M.B. Church was erected in the area that the cemetery is today. The land was given as a gift by W.W. Keith, dated December 7, 1888, 123 years ago. Mr. Samuel Thomas and Mr. Ed Griffin were trustees. The record also shows that four acres of land for cemetery use were purchased from George Washington James on August 7, 1920, with Henry Sullivan, John Ed Thomas and Alex Griffin as trustees of Macedonia Cemetery. The cornerstone was established in 1896. The building was also used for school. Wood burning heaters provided heat and kerosene (Coal Oil) lamps attached to walls supplied the light. After a period of years, the Church began to lean to one side, and the men being concerned and interested in preserving the Church, cut logs and propped it so that they could continue to have worship.
Unfortunately in 1923, the Church was destroyed by a storm, and for a while, worship services were held under a bush harbor prepared by the men. During this interim, the Macedonia School was built, and Church Services were held in the school.
In 1930, the second Church was constructed in the spot where we are now, and this land was given by Mrs. Cody Brown. Being anxious to move into the new Church, they began having services before the building was sealed, and it was very cold inside during the winter months. They decided to have services in the Church in the summer and in the school in the winter. This Church had a steeple in which a large bell hung which was used as a source of information to Church members and community people (no telephones). Mr. Rufus Griffin was the one appointed to ring the bell on Sunday mornings to alert members that Church Services would be held. Finally, the luxury of electric lights was added during the late 1930's.
In 1972, Pastor Nehemiah Bowdre and members added restrooms, a water fountain, new piano, chairs, tables and pulpit
In 1977, Pastor Raymond Bullard and members purchased new pews and partially carpeted the floor.
In 1981, Pastor Zannie Leland, Jr. and members installed air conditioning and speaker system.
In 1986, renovations on the church were windows and light fixtures replaced, and the building bricked. Additions included two rooms, constructed three bathrooms, pastor’s study, a kitchen, a baptistry, ceiling fans, front porch, sidewalk, more air conditioning and indoor carpeting.
In 1994, the sanctuary was completely renovated, the front bathrooms and forum renovated, a new steeple installed, and the baptistry reworked.
In 1995, Ralph Bledsoe, a local artist, painted the Baptistry with scenes of the Jordan River.
In 1996, Rev. Arnette Ray Morris, was led by the Holy Spirit to unite with the Macedonia M.B. Church serving in the capacity of Associate Minister. This was a historic first for the Church Family.
In 1997, under the capable direction and supervision of Bro. Jack Lamberth a road was added to the South west corner of the Macedonia Cemetery, that had been previously opened for burial.
In 1998, roof repair was done to the back of the Church and a new piano was purchased.
In 2002, The Church concreted the parking lot and a New Church sign was added.
In 2008, The Macedonia Church and Concord Church paid the finial note on the Community Center which is named Macedonia Concord Community Center.
In 2010, The Church purchased the land south of the Church which connects the old property with the cemetery. Hopefully one day this will enable us to expand our location for future generations to come.
In 2011, The Church added and purchased new musical instruments and new stove for the kitchens.
In 2012, The Church first web page, Bro. Brooks being the web designer with the domain name Macedoniabatesville.net, we hope that with this many people around the world will be introduce to our Church.
Today, we look back with tender memories as we remember the people who first had the desire to establish this Church. We thank God for all this Church has meant to all down through the years. We remember the people who were instrumental in maintaining the Church. It affords us the opportunity to come and renew our friendship with God and our fellow man, here, we can have our hopes renewed, our sins forgiven, and our hearts encouraged.
The most recent chapter in the history of Macedonia M B. Church began with the opening of the doors of the new church. The Groundbreaking Ceremony for the new facility was held Sunday, September 6, 2015, under the holy leadership of Reverend Dr. Zannie Leland, Jr. Associate ministers at the time were Dr. Barbara Bledsoe, Rev. Clarence Powell, Sr., Rev. Francis Harris, Rev. Eugene Lamberth, and Rev. Loretta Logan. The diaconate included Lygunnah Bean, Jack Lamberth, William Lamberth, Jr., Jeffrey Bean, John Morris, Roy Ellis, Billie Key and Ralph Bledsoe.
Each auxiliary of the church played an important role in planning for the building of the new church by providing input to help serve the auxiliaries’ needs. Members were also instrumental in planning as each was encouraged to offer suggestions to help design a building that would be functional and aesthetically pleasing for all. A committee made up of members of the ministerial staff, deacons and deaconesses, other ministries, and the congregation was utilized to bring about the successful construction of the building.
Funding for the project was contributed by the Arthur Pearson Building Fund, donations to the Wall of Jerusalem (located in the breezeway between the old and new facilities), and pledges from current and former church members.
The beautiful sanctuary is surrounded by a spacious foyer, meeting and classrooms, and a generous study for the pastor. Additional rooms for various activities and a balcony with extra seating are located on the upper level.
The official opening of the new sanctuary and ribbon cutting was Sunday, July 31, 2016. Dedication services were held nightly August 30-September 1, 2016, culminating with a Worship Celebration on Sunday, September 4, 2016 with a “packed house”.