OUR STORY

SINCE 1908 WE HAVE BEEN PREACHING JESUS

IN THE BEGINNING......

Sixty-three years (1845) after the Florida Territory was admitted to the Union as the twenty-seventh state, and twelve years (1920) before the Town of Boynton was incorporated, many people from Alabama, Georgia, South Carolina and the Bahamas migrated to the area seeking better economic opportunities. Some of these newcomers were called a "Peculiar People" who showed special reverence to the cause of Jesus Christ. Even though they encountered many challenges, it was not unusual for them to assemble themselves together under "brush arbors" to worship and praise God.

A concerned landowner donated a portion of his property to Sister Sarah Sims (referred to as Mother Sims), a devout Christian lady with the expressed purpose to build a worship center. Sister Sims accepted the offer and reached out for assistance from other parishioners---especially the Rev. James A. Butler, a man of God and successful businessman, to move the idea forward. Since they had a goal in mind, they utilized their strong faith in God and worked tirelessly toward that end in establishing on September 6, 1908, the St. John Missionary Baptist Church as the second oldest African-American religious institution in the Greater Boynton Beach area.

First 50 years......

Rev. Joseph E. Wells, a Holy Ghost filled preacher from Alabama became the Church's first Pastor. He was instrumental in ordaining the first deacons: Cecil Adderley, Sr., Luther Baldwin, Walter Miller, Edward Terrell, and Bishop Thompson. After serving for ten years, Rev. Wells passed the baton in 1918 to Rev. Albert E. Williams. Rev. Williams was a dynamic leader. During his seven years of service, the interest in Christian work exceeded all expectations as the Church grew spiritually, numerically and of course, financially.

Like those who pastored before him, Rev. David S. Lucus, beginning in 1925 made a lasting impact on the church in such a short period of time.  Within his three years of service, he was able to lead the people of God into purchasing new properties and moved the Church to North East 12th Avenue.
 
On the eve of the Great Depression, Rev. William Porter in 1928 became the fourth Pastor of St. John.  He served the local community well for seventeen years and was instrumental in making necessary repairs to the church after severe damage was caused by three hurricanes.  His successor, Rev. James H. Harrington, Sr., during his tenure implemented two worship services to accommodate the growth of the church.  The church also established a strong Sunday School program, Baptist Training Union (BTU), weekly Bible Study, and during the Summer, a two-week Vacation Bible School for the Church and the community. He felt that the young people were the future leaders of the Church, therefore, they had to be trained. It was also during this time that the old Church building on NE 12th Avenue was demolished and a new structure was built.


                     Next 50 years......

The journey continued when, Rev. Dr. Randolph M. Lee of Daytona Beach, Florida became the sixth Pastor in February of 1959. Under his leadership, the church purchased several properties on North Seacrest Boulevard to build a new spacious state-of-the art sanctuary and Christian School. The groundbreaking ceremonies were held in 1981. It was also during this time that the membership of the church grew in large numbers and the R. M. Lee CDC was organized.  To this very day, Rev. Lee stands as the longest serving pastor in the history of the church.

After, his demise, a true community servant, Rev. Lance Chaney of Rock Island, Illinois became the congregation's seventh Pastor on June 3, 2002. Rev. Chaney was an anointed man of God. He was not only a preacher, teacher, pastor, but also a visionary, counselor, humanitarian, philosopher, and community leader. Under his leadership, St. John experienced a phenomenal growth in Christian discipleship. He served faithfully for 11 years.

The years still yet to come...... 

After the passing of Rev. Chaney, the church called The Rev. Dr. Gilbert Campbell, Jr., a native of Norfolk, Virginia as their Interim Pastor.  He was influential in keeping the church together during this difficult transition in the history of the church.

Subsequently, on December 31, 2015, the Rev. Dr. Jovan T. Davis, a native of Passaic, New Jersey (The Garden State), became the church’s eighth and current pastor.  Under his continued leadership, the church has expanded its reach beyond its four walls.  The church licensed its first female minister and is continuing to engage people of all ages through innovative, instructional and inspirational means of doing ministry.

The St. John Missionary Baptist Church is affiliated with The Florida East Coast Baptist Association, Inc., The Florida General Baptist Convention, Inc., and The National Baptist Convention USA, Inc., which is headquartered in the beautiful and spacious Baptist World Center in Nashville, Tennessee.

Our Pastors

Rev. Joseph E. Wells - 1908 - 1918
Rev. Albert E. Williams - 1918 - 1925
Rev. David S. Lucus - 1925 - 1928
Rev. William Porter - 1928 - 1945
Rev. James H. Harrington, Sr. - 1945 - 1958
Rev. Dr. Randolph M. Lee - 1959 - 2001
Rev. Lance Chaney - 2002 -2013
Rev. Dr. Gilbert Campbell, Jr. (Interim Pastor) - 2014 - 2015
Rev. Dr.  Jovan T. Davis - 2015 – Present

Be a part of our story...

Join us every
 Sunday as we gather to worship together at 10:00 am.
Wednesday for Bible Study at 7:00pm