Founded in 1866 by Rev. James F. Wright, St. John Baptist Church has been blessed under the leadership of eight Pastors.
St. John Baptist Church Pastors
According to the facts stated by Rev. J. G. Mont, one of the founders of St. John Baptist Church in March 1866. Some of the colored (Negro) members of the New Bethel Baptist Church (white) at Paiges, in Caroline County Virginia, asked the white members to allow them to have a meeting in the gallery of the white church on the third Sunday afternoon. The request was granted and Rev. James F. Wright preached his first sermon in the meeting to a mixed audience of both races. Mr. Arthur Beasley, a Deacon of the white church was so impressed with the service that he went to visit Deacon Giles Mont and told him the “white brethren” decided to let the “colored brethren” have another meeting on the third Sunday in April. On that third Sunday the “white brethren” licensed Rev. James F. Wright to be the regular preacher for the “colored brethren.”
Again Deacon Arthur Beasley visited Deacon Giles Mont and said the “colored brethren (men and women)” should have a church of their own and he would help them build one. After looking at several locations the brethren decided to build on the hill where the old church once stood known as the Brick-Kiln-Hill. The brethren organized and built the first church. The meeting held on the third Sunday in May 1866 included members (William Jackson, George Ross, Buckner Carter, Lawrence Coleman, Walker Bailor, York Nelson, Thomas Wright, Eliza Mont, Jane Nelson, Mary Jackson, Mary Carter, Roxie Wright and Daniel Webster). It was decided on that same Sunday, the church should be named St. John. The first church was a brush arbor covered with pines, cedars and piles of old broken bricks on Brick-Kiln-Hill. They worshiped there until the cold weather, then services were held at the home of Deacon Giles Mont until the spring of 1867.
In 1875, Deacon Beasley helped with the church again. He gave one acre of land and money helping the second church to be erected. Walker Bailor and Daniel Webster put the body and the rafters up for the church. However, they ran out of money and this is when Deacon Beasley assisted once again. Remodeling took place in 1900 and 1922. In 1936 the brick edifice was erected at a cost of $25,000.00.
The church was without a pastor for 2 years (December 1958 - January 1960). Deacon Edward Ragland, Chairman of the Deacon Board was chosen as the Church Moderator and Chairman of the Pulpit Committee in search of a new pastor. St. John has licensed and ordained a number of men and women to preach the gospel. During the past 154 years, God has blessed St. John with dynamic pastors with a vision of growth. Rev. W. G. Berryman served as pastor from 1980 -2019. He was preceded by the early pastors of St. John that included the following Reverends: James F. Wright, Spencer Todd, C. W. Berkley, C. A. Lindsay, J. B. Gordon, A. L. Hill and N. T. Young. Under the leadership of Rev. W. G. Berryman, St. John experienced unprecedented growth and expansion. In January 2012, St. John ordained their first five female deacons.
Today, St. John continues to grow in membership, outreach and community service throughout the county and globally. “To God Be The Glory for All That He Has Done!” AMEN
SUNDAY MORNING SERVICE
Join Rev. Dr. Tony J. Craddock, Sr., Pastor, and the St. John Baptist congregation for Sunday worship service at 10:00 am.
We encourage you to dial in or to attend in-person service to hear a Word from God.
WORSHIP WITH US
8:45 am - 9:45 am
SUNDAY WORSHIP SERVICE
FIFTH SUNDAY SERVICE
8:00 am Only
1st, 2nd, 3rd Wednesdays
6:45 pm - 7:45 pm
MID-DAY BIBLE STUDY
12:00 pm - 1:00 pm Only