We at Meridian Avenue Baptist Church believe in the unseen God of the universe who is both the Creator and Redeemer of life. We believe that God cares about us, that God loves us, and that accepting this love and sharing this love with others is what is most important in life, even beyond our lives here on Earth. Jesus taught that the greatest of all the commandments was to “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.” Then he added, “Love your neighbor as yourself.” (Mark 12: 30-31a) Then he told a story about a man who was traveling on a lonely road and was beaten and robbed but was helped by the Good Samaritan who was of a different culture and nationality. The moral of this story is that we are to care about all persons, regardless of our differences and regardless of our past experiences. We at Meridian Avenue strive to live up to this teaching. We invite you to seek God here at MABC and to find a community of friends.
Meridian Avenue Baptist Church was established as a mission of West Side Baptist Church. The first meetings were held in a small white frame building on the corner of First Street and Meridian Avenue. The women of West Side Baptist Church cooked chicken dinners and sold them to help raise money to buy the building which would become Meridian Avenue Baptist Church. The church was organized on July 25, 1925 with 54 charter members.
As the church grew, a brick tabernacle-type building was built and dedicated on May 27, 1928. In 1935 the frame church building was torn down and the brick education building was completed, west of the brick tabernacle sanctuary.
The mortgage held on these two buildings was burned in 1943 and planning and construction began on our present sanctuary in 1949. The dedication ceremony was held on November 9, 1952. A three-story educational building was completed in 1954.
Meridian Avenue Baptist Church owned property at 212 and 216 N. Meridian. The house at 212 N. Meridian was our Fellowship Center, also known as the “House Next Door.” In 1976 the property was converted into a parsonage for interim pastors. In 1977 this house was used as rental property as well as the house at 216 N. Meridian. In 1985 the church membership voted to expand the parking lot, so the two houses were removed to accommodate this project.
Several years ago, the church acquired the property north of the parking lot which is now a vacant lot and used for overflow parking on special occasions. In October 2000, the church celebrated her 75th Anniversary with previous pastors in attendance, releasing 75 helium balloons, and removing the corner stone of the building to view the contents and place new items within as well. We praise God for His faithfulness over the years and look forward to His blessings in the years ahead as we continue to serve Him in our neighborhood, community and around the world through missions.
Pastors Serving At Meridian Avenue Baptist Church
|Rev. J. Wayne Pinson||August 1925 to November 1926|
|Rev. Isaac C. Patton||December 1926 to January 1928|
|Rev. G.A. Creekmore||March 1928 to January 1932|
|Rev. Dr. O. L. Wood||April 1932 to March 1933|
|Rev. Daniel S. Brinkley||March 1933 to February 1937|
|Rev. J. F. Burlie||March 1937 to August 1941|
|Rev. R. L. Woods||September 1941 to June 1966|
|Rev. H. Wayne Fink||November 1966 to January 1971|
|Rev. Ralph Hunt, Jr||August 1971 to May 1976|
|Rev. Dr. Melvin B. Crane||June 1977 to January 1992|
|Rev. David Harader, Assoc Pastor||January 1983 to September 1987|
|Rev. Roger Megli||November 1992 to May 2002|
|Rev. Paul Shoemaker||April 2003 to August 2006|
|Rev. Jim Zier||November 2007 to Present|