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The Stoner Hill Baptist Church had a humble beginning. It began with a prayer band in the home of early pioneers such as Sister Anna Taylor and led by Reverend Early Jones; this was in the year of 1914. Eventually, the prayer band outgrew the home of Sister Taylor and had to be moved to the Old Lindsey Hall on Fort and Pecan Street. In the summer, once again the numbers increased by 40 baptisms and with the assistance of the Late A. H. Samuels they organized and named themselves as the Stoner Hill Baptist Church, calling Rev. Early Jones as the first Pastor.
After developing numerous boards and increasing church membership, Rev. Jones moved away from the city. In 1917, Rev. L.L. Williams was called to be Pastor. It was under the leadership of L.L. Williams that the music ministry grew and the church was able to secure property at the corner of Vaughn and Stoner. Rev. Williams served as Pastor for three years.
In 1920, Rev. C. H. Walker was called to be the third Pastor of this fast growing church. He can be credited with helping build the first church edifice at 328 East Stoner Ave which was built in 1925. He faithfully served for 17 untiring years of service. After Rev. Walker resigned, the late J. L. Thomas then served as the fourth Pastor of the Stoner Hill Baptist Church. By the time the fifth Pastor, Rev. John Wesley Jacobs was installed the church was in much need of repair. In 1942, under his leadership he had the church repaired inside and out. In 1947, the Rev. H.J. Price was called as Pastor. Reverend Price was known for his great revivals. He added many members to the church roster over the nine years that he was Pastor.
In 1955, The Rev. S.W. Jackson was called as Pastor. He was a Pastor that was able to draw unto the Lord the young and the old. Rev Jackson was a visionary. The church updated the Stoner Avenue location with a new roof. After updating the Stoner Avenue location, six lots were purchased from Eddie Alias on the corner of Vine and Cornwell. In 1967,during a church wide meeting the church gave the okay to go forth with the building of a new church (this is still the present day location at 1201 Cornwell Ave). On October 16, 1970 the members marched from the old church to the new church praying and singing. The members worked hard to pay for the new church, and in 1978, the church was paid off. After serving 33 long years, Reverend S.W. Jackson was called to rest and Reverend Clifton Montgomery, Jr. became Pastor. He served one year
The next Pastor was installed in 1990, Reverend Prince Gipson Jr. Rev Prince Gipson Jr. had a desire to get his message out beyond the church walls. The church services were broadcasted on the radio. Also, like his many predecessors he made many updates to the church including a baby grand piano. Reverend Prince Gipson Jr. served for only two years leaving the son of the house, Rev. Eugene Lemons as interim Pastor. Eventually in 1995, with much prayer and guidance from the Holy Spirit, the membership called Rev. Arthur L. Wilson Jr., to be the Pastor. Pastor Wilson implemented the month of March as Prayer month and the month of November as Visitor’s month. A yearlong building fund campaign for the renovation of S. W. Jackson Mission Complex. In addition, under his five year long leadership, the Covenant Partners were instituted to assist in Outreach Ministries.
The church next prayerfully selected Rev. Willie C. Sherin to lead the flock. A new church bus was purchased. Plans were made to evangelize the neighborhood. Reverend Sherin's focus was on fellowship. The church visited Dallas, Texas, its first out of state trip. Under his leadership, new Christian friendships were formed and old Christian friendships were rekindled. After serving as Pastor for five years, he left the congregation.
In 2008, the church heavily researched many prospective candidates. After very carefully praying and interviewing candidates, the Deacon Board took their findings to members of the church. The members selected our current leader, Reverend Don DeCarlo Taylor. Under Reverend Taylor's visionary leadership many members that relocated along the way have come back. Also, he implemented a Young Adult Ministry that catered to individuals 18-40 years of age. This ministry included a young adult choir and praise dance team. Also, through his leadership membership has grown, giving has increased, discipleship has grown, in 2012 the church added a new vestibule, restrooms, conference room, classrooms, and an audio/visual room. Chairs were added to the choir loft, the Sanctuary and Fellowship Hall were painted, new exit doors were installed, the existing restrooms, pulpit area and pastor's office were renovated, the sound system was upgraded, new recording equipment was added, and thanks to generous members two 47 inch T.V. monitors were purchased and installed in the Sanctuary, and a 60 inch T.V. was purchased and installed in the Fellowship Hall. Furthermore during his leadership, new pews, pulpit furniture, a communion table, 2 offering tables and 2 lecterns were added. In 2017 the Brotherhood Ministry sponsored a trip to the Bill Clinton Presidential Library in Little Rock Arkansas, they also sponsored an overnight trip to Memphis Tennessee in 2018, and in 2018 the Youth Ministry sponsored a 6 day trip to Orlando, Florida and Disney World. On June 30, 2022 the mortgage for the additions to the Church was paid in full and on August 14, 2022 the church celebrated with a note burning ceremony.
As we look back over the history of our church, though we have faced many hardships, we pressed on. Though the Lord has blessed the congregation to grow, some members were lost, but still we pressed on. We are indeed thankful and humbled because the Lord has shined upon the Stoner Hill Baptist Church for more than 100 years.
Stoner Hill Baptist Church History
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