The History of Antioch Baptist Church

Our History

Antioch had its beginning in prayer meetings held in the homes of three charter members: Grandma Carr, Mrs. Emily Gain, and Mrs. Gilbert Vernon. God moved through these three Christian women who met regularly in their homes for weekly prayer meeting and the vision of Antioch became a reality. They were not contented to worship and feel the Holy Spirit within the confines of their small homes, for they longed to share the joys which they experienced with others. Seeing the need for a House dedicated to God, where on Sundays they could edify each other and lead sinners to Christ, these three women along with others who had joined them, sought a place to worship.

 

In 1857

Three (3) Negro women organized Antioch Baptist Church. Reverend Reasoner was the first pastor of Antioch. There was a total of 14 members. The pastors from 1857-1905 are not precisely known. However, the names of the following pastors are known: Reverends Hall, Stewart, Frank Bates, D.J. Tate, Jones, Alexander, Pearman, and Smith. The first church was a small frame building located on Spring Street. The first land given to the church was donated by a friend, Captain David L. Allen; the land was never to be sold and to be used only for church building expansion.

 

In 1909

Again, without a leader, a call was extended to Reverend J.A. McPherson of Lafayette, Indiana. His pastorate began in 1929. Reverend McPherson immediately began making plans to completely remodel the church. Before these plans could become a reality, the lot on which the church building stood at 600 Greenwood Avenue, would have to be purchased. A trip to Peoria, Illinois, was made by Reverend McPherson and others. There the heir and owner of the lot was contacted in order to secure a clear title and deed before any remodeling began. It was agreed that the lot be purchased for the sum of $500 and Mr. Sidney Dills submitted his written signature.

Antioch now belonged to its members and from this point on Antioch Baptist Church became Antioch Missionary Baptist Church. The first remodeling work included relocation of the pulpit, choir loft and baptistery, new furniture, carpeting of pulpit and aisle, and a new hot air heating system. A garage was built at the parsonage.

 

 

In 1957

We now come to the administration of Reverend Luke W. Mingo, who came to us from Carbondale, Illinois, in May 1955. He worked zealously toward a new church home and a united membership. Reverend Mingo was a devout, prayerful, and God-fearing man who trusted implicitly in his Maker.

After setting the example of tithing, many began to give from the heart and the $14,500 building fund balance from the former administration was greatly enlarged through sacrificial giving and a substantial payment of $35,000 was made on a $70,000 building, and the move to 525 North Church Street was made on January 18, 1957, the 100th year of our existence.

 

In 1999

With Antioch’s ever-increasing membership, the church was blessed with being able to grow in building size as well as members. During 1999, a historic event was Antioch’s sanctified move from 525 North Church Street to 530 West Mound Road.

After many months of investigation, negotiation, and prayers with the Nazarene congregation, the Antioch family purchased the building and made the move on February 7. With a police escort, the move was made in a majestic and long motorcade.