Fifty-five years ago, three Middletown churches merged to form one church, United Missionary Baptist Church.
The late Rev. James Holloman was named pastor of the newly-formed church in 1963, and since then, 11 full-time and interim pastors have served the church. For the last 25 years, the Rev. Gregory Tyus has led the congregation.
That history will be celebrated during a two-day affair, Sept. 29-30, that will include a musical, a re-enactment of the march from the former Booker T. Washington School to the church, and a sermon delivered by Middletown native, the Rev. David Bryant Sr., pastor at Greater Saint Paul Missionary Baptist Church in Cocoa, Fla.
Sylvester Richards, 83, and Bruce Hughley, 70, both longtime members of United Missionary, said the church and its members have always been involved in the community. The church financially supports several college scholarships, provides back-to-school supplies to local students and volunteers at Rosa Parks Elementary.
Hughley said United Missionary has been “a catalyst” for education and personal and spiritual growth.
He said instead of marking its anniversary with a fund-raiser, the church needed to celebrate its impact in the community.
“After 55 years and the struggles, the loss of elders whose shoulders we stood on and are still standing on, we need to celebrate where God has brought us from,” he said.
Click here to read more.