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Church History

  • Mount Pleasant Baptist Church Reflections “Fifty-Seven Years”     May 1965       May 2002

    The Mount Pleasant Baptist Church is still standing on the “Solid Rock” due to its members’ strong faith in God. He has kept us for 56 “glorious” years. Together, let us reflect on some of Mount Pleasant’s key dates, events and milestones.

    On May 7, 1965, the Mount Pleasant Baptist Church (MPBC) was organized under the leadership of Pastor Joshua Webster Green. At that time, church services were held in the lower level of Mount Zion Baptist Church where Reverend James Smythe, Sr., served as their Pastor. With funds ($4,000.00) raised by the dedicated and committed members of the Mount Pleasant Baptist Church and a loan from Pastor Green and Sister Nellie Hill. The members marched into the church building at 562 Clinton Avenue on August 1, 1965.

    On January 22, 1966, Pastor Green called a special meeting to tell the members about a certain property he had looked at in the interest of the Church. After much discussion, a vote was taken to purchase the property and authorized Pastor Green and the trustees to proceed with the purchase.

    On September 25, 1966, with police escort and the band from St. John’s Church of God in Christ, members marched into the edifice in which we now worship and affectionately call, “The Mountain of Pleasantness” located at 441 Washington Avenue, Albany, New York.

    In January of 1968, the Mount Pleasant Baptist Church organizer and our first Pastor, Reverend Joshua Webster Green, submitted his resignation. For ten months, we were without a shepherd. During this time, our loyal and faithful trustees handled the financial part of the church. Our then Church Mother, Sis. Lena Clark would remind us over and over that we should “Thank God for Jesus”.

    In December of 1968, Reverend Lawrence W. George was called as our Pastor. He was installed in March 1969. His theme for Mount Pleasant Baptist Church was “The Church with God’s Spirit.” Reverend George remained as Pastor for 18 months. Under his leadership, we burned our mortgage, three years ahead of schedule.

    On December 27, 1970, after much prayer, God blessed Mount Pleasant with a new leader in the person of Reverend Edward-Earl Johnson. Pastor Johnson reorganized the auxiliaries that had ceased working and added new ones. He ordained (4) deacons: Branch Clark, James Dixon, James Edmondson and Clarence Lovelace. Reverend Johnson stayed with us for seven years as he was called back to pastor his former church where he served as Youth Minister. Deacon Clarence Lovelace, Chairman of the Deacons and other faithful officers continued to carry on the business of the church after his departure.

    On June 26, 1977, Reverend William Roland was installed as Mount Pleasant Baptist Church’s fourth Pastor. Pastor Roland was active and well respected in the Albany community and received many awards for his community service. Because of Pastor Roland’s strong faith in God and his love for his people, he guided us in the right direction for twenty years. Under his leadership, church membership increased significantly, and nine deacons were ordained. There were several upgrades and renovations made to the building. However, as time moved on, Pastor Roland recognized his health was failing and authorized the Deacon Board to be responsible for Worship Service. Deacon Louis Williams, Jr., gave Mount Pleasant Baptist Church his best leadership during this time as chair of our deacons. Pastor Roland resigned after twenty years of anointed service. On April 20, 1997, during morning worship, the members voted to give the title of “Pastor Emeritus” to Pastor Roland.

    On November 22, 1998, Reverend William Edward Morgan accepted Mount Pleasant’s call and became our fifth pastor. He came with his wife at his side, Reverend Shirley A. Morgan. He immediately introduced us to the meaning of true membership; being a Disciple of Jesus Christ.

    Under the leadership of Pastor Morgan, the following ministries were organized/reorganized: The Growing in Grace ministry (GIG) with Deaconess Patrice Burwell appointed as president (the current president is Sis. Angela Swazo); Liturgical Dance Ministry with Deaconess Doris Waiters as the initial coordinator (the current coordinators are Sis. Niquane Smith and Sis. Tonya Motley); Youth Ministry with the following ministers appointed as Youth Ministers: Reverend Shirley Morgan and Reverend Lisa Good (we now have a combined Youth/Young Adult Ministry with Deaconess Patrice Burwell as director and Sis. Adaviah Ward as president); The Pastor’s Aid Ministry renamed as, the Shepherd’s Assistants with Sis. Virginia Moody serving as president. Additionally, he has ordained five ministers and eleven deacons; eight deaconesses consecrated; ten junior deacons and four junior deaconesses set aside with twelve women appointed as Church Mothers. In addition, we have purchased the following: a parsonage (paid it off in two and a half years instead of fifteen), a new van (paying for it with cash), an organ and recently purchased a new sound system.

    During Pastor Morgan’s tenure we have learned the importance of Christian Education, knowing that meditating on God’s Word is more important than secular education in that the knowledge of God’s Word is sure to bring about obedience in following His Word. Knowing this as truth and using as a guide, II. Timothy 2:15, Pastor Morgan has implemented a Teachers Training class with students in MPBC and throughout the Capital District and the Board of Christian Education with the following members serving as director: Reverend Frank Turner, Sr., Deaconesses Mary E. Williams and Doris Waiters (current director).

    This anointed teacher/preacher has served as Area #3 Vice President of the Empire Baptist Missionary Convention Inc. and is a certified instructor of Baptist Doctrine for the Hudson River Frontier Missionary Baptist Association (HRFMBA) and the Empire Baptist Missionary Convention, Inc. He also teaches Articles of Faith, the History of Baptists and is currently serving as Assistant Financial Secretary of the Empire Baptist Convention, Inc.

    Mount Pleasant Baptist Church has never been without efficient and faithful church officers. With this said, in February 2022, there was a shift in our Deacons Ministry with Deacon Michael Good after serving more than twenty years given the title of, Deacon Emeritus. We now have a new chair and vice chair, Deacons Henry Howard and Larry Burwell.

    “The Mountain of Pleasantness” has remained financially secure. The Building Fund Committee implemented during Pastor Morgan’s tenure explored options to build a new edifice with the assistance from the following Building Fund Chairs: Brothers Andrew Adams and Don Young. The plans to move forward with a new building have ceased but renovations have begun to the existing building: repair of the existing parking lot (which will include adding a new fence), pave the new lot, restoration of the fellowship hall and kitchen utility room, installation of a new bathroom in the choir room, corking of windows inside sanctuary and add a new carpet on the second level.

    Time has moved on and after 57 years, “The Mountain of Pleasantness” continues to reap the rewards of our labor even though we experienced a Valley Season in 2020 with the Covid-19 pandemic. Due to the pandemic running rapid throughout our country and because it hit MPBC very hard, the decision was made to lock our doors in March 2020. Even though the church building was closed, in April we were able to have church and connect with Pastor Morgan to receive a WORD from on high on Sundays with Bible Study and Prayer Call on Thursdays. This success was a result of assistance from our Media Ministry. In addition, we continued to be ushered into Worship Sunday after Sunday with music under the direction of our Minister of Music, Bro. Dennis L. Edney. Yes, we lost some soldiers along the way during the pandemic, our Guiding Lights, but we know that God was and is, still in control.

    Mount Pleasant, we are still here, standing on God’s promises; running this race with faith and God’s Almighty favor; AND yes, we are anxiously waiting for a WORD from on High to, Revive, Restore, Renew and Reunite, Speak Lord.

    Humbly submitted, Sis. Virginia Moody