Formally called “Piney Grove,” Piney Grove Missionary Baptist Church in the Crossing Green Community was founded in 1868 when the period of reconstruction was underway.
The founders of the church were among the slaves who slipped away from their cabins at night to listen to the word of God and to worship Him through songs of grace, faith, and hope.
“This was a period where the 14th Amendment was brought forth and the scalawags of the South and the carpetbaggers of the North were soliciting the black vote while, at the same time, the Ku Klux Klan and other secret societies were working to prevent the blacks from voting. Voting was a new and probably almost unheard-of act amongst the black community; therefore, many turned to religion and used it as their main expression of a newly found freedom,” said member of the church, Elizabeth Harrison.
God’s grace through the years has kept the Piney Grove church family while they have been giving Him all of the Glory.
Rev. Michael Thomas is the pastor of the church and is a man of God with a vision to preach, teach, and do the work it takes as a leader in the church with 110 members on roll.
Harrison loves her church dearly. “I love my church for many reasons: I am able feel and give love when I enter to worship, able to give freely as God instructs, able to praise and thank God for his bountiful blessings, able to receive my spiritual food, able to fellowship with family, members, visitors, friends, and able to enjoy delicious soul food when church occasions permit.”
Prior to the pandemic the church was able to have many face-to-face, community-based initiatives to bring aid. Some of their outreach efforts include and tutoring program after school, health fairs, free car washes, and sick check-ins. This church family has brought so much joy into their community.
“Due to pandemic precautions, we presently worship via Facebook Live on the church’s Facebook page, @Piney Grove Missionary Baptist Church. Regular service is held on second and fourth Sundays at 11 a.m. and Bible Study Wednesday before the second and fourth Sunday at 7 p.m. All are welcome to join us as our virtual church doors are open. We look forward to a time where we can worship in person again soon,” said Harrison.