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St. Luke Missionary Baptist Church was organized in December 1950 at 818 West Florida Avenue, Richmond, California under the leadership of Reverend Robert Howard. Charter members were Brothers, Clifton Baten, John Martin and Din Davis; and Sisters, Connie Houston, Nancy Baten, Mildred Houstin, Carrie Talton and Mildred McCoy.
Pastor Howard presided as pastor from 1950 to 1951, worshiping God in a warehouse building. The good news could be heard throughout the canal.
The church began to grow spiritually and numerically. Sister Isabel Thomas, as well as the entire membership, was very concerned to find that the Canal site where the church was meeting would be demolished when the shipyard closed. Sister Thomas learned through a co-worker that a church located at 633 Florida Avenue in Richmond, California would be selling their church building. Sister Thomas shared the church building information with the Pastor and members and the church was purchased.
In June 1955, the members marched to to the new location at 633 Florida Avenue, singing ‘How I Got Over’ under the leadership of Reverend Tommie Davis, who presided as pastor from 1951 to 1963.
In December 1963, Reverend E. Paul Perkins Jr., a man of vision, was called as pastor. The Lord continued to bless the church, under the leadership of Reverend E. Paul Perkins, and in 1964, the project to add the first addition to the church was started. Reverend Perkins presided as pastor from 1963 to 1969.
In 1969, Reverend O’Neal Young was called to St. Luke as Pastor and during his tenure, the church continued to grow. Reverend Young ordained the first Deacons of St. Luke. The Youth department was revitalized, the Christian Education department was organized and the church also burned the first mortgage. Reverend Young remained a wonderful and inspirational leader from 1969 until his death in 1974.
From 1975 - 2010, Reverend John H. Green led the church as pastor. Our church theme states: ‘We are many members, but only one body’. Scripture reference Matthew 16:18. Every first Sunday of the year - ‘Lord Make us One’ John 17:11. Reverend Green continued to build on the same foundation as the Pastors before him. Reverend Green organized the Deaconess Board, New Member orientation classes I and II, remodeled the church, and updated equipment. The mortgage was paid off more than twenty-eight years ahead of time. God has been good to St. Luke!
Our current pastor, Reverend Dr. Charles J. Stewart, took the steering wheel in 2010 and continues to maintain the course, keeping in the forefront the teaching and preaching of God’s unchanging word in these rapidly changing times. Pastor Stewart added video technology to the services, upgraded equipment and remolded the bathrooms.
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