History of North Broadway Church of Christ
260 North Broadway
Mount Clemens, MI 48043
The congregation that meets at 260 North Broadway in Mount Clemens, MI, is in fact, a transplant from Vernon, AL, that was established in 1931, by the late, renowned pioneer preacher, Paul D. English, Evangelist. The church’s records indicates the late Sister Cleo (Blaylock) Dumas, was the first in the Jones family to be baptized into the Church of Christ in Millport, AL, followed by the late Sister Estelle Woods. The late Sister Cleo (Blaylock) Dumas was introduced to the Church of Christ in the early 30’s by the Yarborough family, her employer! The strong faith, hope, courage and excitement of this Christian woman enabled her to introduce the Church of Christ to hundreds of souls by, inviting guest to worship attendance, gospel meetings, debates, and private Bible studies. She remained faithful to the cause of the Christian experience from Alabama to Michigan, near 64 years until her demise in 1993! Her brother, Owens Jones, was baptized in the fall of 1932, when Brother Paul D. English was conducting a gospel meeting and debate at Lamar County Training School in Vernon, AL, in the dfall of 1932. The late Sister Channie Jones, wife of the late Brother Owens Jones, along with approximately 62 other believers from surrounding communities were baptized in Christian obedience.
The names of some of the families and individuals that were present during the historic and successful debate between Brother Paul D. English and four preachers of different religious orientations were: John (father of the late Brother Edie Lee) Harrington; the Gunter family: Felix and Annie; Gent Hollis family, Coleman family; Amah Smith, Elmer Brunies, Matt Salter and son. Rispus Bondman, Dixie Curley, Elise and Modine, Andrew and Willard Walker, (brother of John Walker, who later obeyed the gospel). The church began in Vernon, AL, with a grand total of 64 precious souls that were baptized for the remission of sins.
The members of the church in Vernon met from house to house during unfavorable weather conditions and winters, however, during warm and favorable conditions, the worship assemblies, Bible classes and gospel meetings were held outdoors in hastily constructed brush harbors. In approximately 1933, the first church building was purchased in the Nebo building in rural Vernon, AL, that was partially constructed by another church group, they, did not complete.
Felix and Frank Gunter, Eddie Lee Harrington, Owen Jones, and Jesse Howard held leadership positions in those days. Due to the shortage of preachers in the church at the time, the church grew rather slow, but constant! The congregation however, was blessed with one of its new converts named Jimmie Hollis, who became a preacher and served the congregation approximately one year, and did a very good job. Other ministers who served were: Jesse Scott (Jim Hollis’ brother-in-law), Cottrey L. Moore, along with visiting minister, Brother Alexander Lucius.
In search of newer and better opportunities, Walter and Muggie Jones spear headed the move north from Vernon, AL, to join their sons: Owens and Ivan Jones in 1936; who first moved to Mount Clemens, November 12, 1935! Their source of transportation was by truck. They made two trips for everyone who moved north! And from 1936 – 1967, the members worshiped in various locations in Mount Clemens as follows: 209 North Walnut Street, 69 Brooks Street, 95 Gibbs Street, 225 Court Street; 23986 Colechester Street (first officially built church building in mount Clemens); then, to present facilities at: 260 North Broadway, built during the evangelistic leadership of Brother James E. Thompson, Minister. Brother Thompson has been serving the congregation over 40 years and counting!
Preachers Who Served – 1936-1966 (visiting preachers/ministers).
Brother J. D. Bynum, Brother O. A. Manuel, Brother G. P. Bowser, Brother P. E. Butler, Brother Thomas H. York, Brother Baldwin, Brother Samuel Berry, Brother Cottery Moore and Brother Thomas H. Owens. Brother Cottery Moore served as Minister to the congregation from 1939-1944, and he was succeeded by Brother Roscoe More. The preachers, who served the congregation from 1949-1966, were Brothers: Roscoe Moore, Ivan P. Jones, Samuel Garnett, Robert Wiggins, William Smart and Andrew Carney!
Brother James E. Thompson became the minister to the congregation, along with his wife Marva and children: Therrall and Mark in 1967. God's blessings have been favorable toward him and the over-all ministries morally, spiritually, numerically and tangibly. The following ministries with God's blessings have been put in place: 1968 - Radio Broadcast, airs Sunday mornings, 8:30 AM, WEXL, 1340 on the dial. Radio Chorus - (Provides some of the Acappella music for the broadcast) 1969, He began a preacher training program with Four Students; all of whom became preachers of the gospel. (Brother Charles A. Wilson, along with his wife Arma, obeyed the gospel in Mount Clemens and received training to become a gospel preacher. Who later served as co-minister with Brother Thompson approximately 3 years! He will be remembered for his labor and organization of the Ministry of Reconciliation and Christian Outreach). That program of course, led to the establishment of "Preacher Training Institute" in 1991 (PTI), presently known as "Midwestern Christian Institute" providing quality Christian education for men and women, in an innovative Saturday school only! Also, in 1969, the congregation began making plans to build a new and larger church building at the cost of approximately $250,000.00. The new construction was completed in 1971. 1979-1982, the first group of Bishops (3) and Deacons (3) were ordained. Bishops installed were: Owens Jones (deceased), Henry Harrington and Willie Harrington. The Deacons were: Lavon Pitts (deceased), Roscoe Sulton and Perry Wells (deceased). In 1985, Willie Crawley was installed to serve as a deacon.
In 1997, the church leadership and Brother Thompson realized the numerical and spiritual growth of the congregation demanded more space and conveniences in order to do the work needed to be done. Therefore, plans were put in place to build a new addition was completed in 2001, costing approximately $750,000, bringing the property value over $1,000,000!
Due to the deaths of Owens Jones, Elder; Perry Wells, Deacon; and Lavon Pitts; new Bishops and Deacons were ordained in 2001 as follows; Willie Crawley and Billy Gannt, new Bishops; and Vernon Clark, Richard Flack and Travis Harrington were ordained new Deacons. in 2004, new training in church leadership again was put in place to prepare more men to serve in church leadership. And in 2005 the following men were ordained to be Deacons: Dwayne L. Dixon, Clifton McGarity, III, Willie Otis, Anthony Patterson, and Rakaman Upshaw. We are pleased and thankful to God to have the men listed above, along with their wives and families serving the North Broadway church family in the city of Mount Clemens and the surrounding communities.
The North Broadway Church of Christ is a warm, friendly, hospitable, loving and soul-conscientious church. We look forward to serving everyone to the glory and honor of God.