A COMPENDIUM OF THE HISTORY OF BLACK ROCK SDA CHURCH by L.C.
Now the beginning of the Black Rock S.D.A. Church was on this wise when the Holy Spirit spoke to the heart of the servant of the Lord even Pastor W.W. Weithers he interviewed certain members of the congregation of the Lord at King Street Church and said unto them come lets go down to Black Rock and pitch a tent there, and preach the three angels message to them. And behold his saying pleased them and they said unto him all that our Lord sayeth we will do.
The Servant of the Lord prepared a budget, and appeared before the Captains of the Lord’s Hosts at Brittons Cross Roads, and he presented his plans to them. And the leaders of Israel inquired of the Lord and were impressed of the Holy Spirit to approve his plans. They gave him a tent, many benches and a little money, and blessed him saying go up and the Lord be with thee to bless and prosper thy hands and so it came to pass that in the year of our Lord even the year 1954 on the 10th evening of the ninth month even the month September that the tent was pitched, and the hand bills circulated, and the helpers, Campbell the son of Davis and Muriel the daughter of Walker, and others of the congregation round about Black Rock came together and the strangers of the community also came to see what was being done among the people of God.
And the Servant of the Lord arose and nightly proclaimed the word of the Lord and the people’s heart smote them that they said come let us go again to the tent of the Adventist that is at Black Rock. So they came they and their wives, their concubines and their children, and they heard God’s last message to a dying world and they repented of their evil deeds, and accepted the message of the three angels as spoken by the Servant of the Lord and they said all that the Bible saith we will do and the spirit of the Lord came upon them and gave them power to be obedient unto the word of truth.
And after many nights of preaching the word and many days of visiting with the people in their homes that on the 23rd day of the first month even the month of January in the year of our Lord 1955, that the whole congregation gathered by the seaside at Graves End and the servant of the Lord went down into the sea and baptised them, even one score and seven did he baptise.
And all the congregation rejoiced over the first fruits the Lord had given them for their labours and behold the newly baptised members looked here and there to find a place of worship, but could find no suitable place but the Lord was with them and guided them to Mrs. Jackman the widow of Oliver who Sojourns at Walmer Lodge, and they rented the basement and fixed it up and made it a place of worship and they moved into the basement and Leon whose surname is Clement was appointed leader of the company.
They went out and brought in yet others of the strangers that were among them and the congregation grew. And when they called their first board meeting, they immediately made plans to build an Edifice unto the Lord, so the Lord blessed them and the people brought their gifts of money, and there was in the congregation a woman whose name was Emeline, the wife of Leon, whose surname is Clement; a zealous woman full of good works, she held outings, programmes, and socials, and the Lord blessed the works of her hands so that the building fund increased greatly.
Pastor Westney was now appointed as our minister and he on the 2nd day of the sixth month even the month of June in the year of our Lord 1956, organised the company into a church and Leon, whose surname is Clement was elected local elder.
The church was filled with Spirit of God and thought to do exploits for him, so we inquired of the Lord and was impressed of the Holy Spirit to scatter the printed page in Holder’s Hill and the surrounding districts, we proceeded to Holder’s Hill with tracts, magazines and Voice of Prophecy lessons, visiting the people in their homes, we visited Hall Village and the Heights keeping meetings, Sabbath and Sunday evenings. Down through the ravine and over the Hillock we went praying and working we became as one man with one desire, we were actually propelled by the spirit.
Pastor Milton Neblett was now appointed to be our minister, and we immediately asked him to conduct a tent effort at Holder’s Hill which he readily consented to do. In that effort we gained about forty souls and a company was raised up in that place to the glory and honour of our God.
Pastor Neblett, seeing our plight in the cellar made an appeal to the captains of the Lord’s host at Brittons Cross Road and they bought the church at Hillaby and we leased a spot of land at Seclusion Road and with the help of the brethren at Holder’s Hill at the appointed time we brought down the house of God from Mt. Hillaby to Seclusion Road and we rebuilt it after a different size and pattern and spent much money to enlarge and improve the house of God.
Pastor L.D. Brathwaite was then appointed and he held efforts and brought in other members.
We were encouraged to buy an organ by Sis. M. Hood. Sis Iris Deane Francis has been of inestimable value to our church in working with the children in our tent efforts and instructing the converts after their baptism and giving good advice to the church.
Pastor Lynford Williams was next appointed. He was a very active pastor. He held efforts and brought in many people and encouraged us to buy a plot of land at Ellerslie Road, and we with great joy removed the house of God to Ellerslie Road.
Then we had the ground breaking ceremony and present were Pastors, R.G. Thompson, W.W. Thompson, L. Williams, C. Lashley, and many of the churches helped us financially, even churches from the other islands sent us their contributions, and we were able to begin and plan the size of our church building.
Pastor C. Lashley was then appointed. He worked very hard with the building and carrying the responsibility of the church. Brethren, Stanley Lewis and Charles Worrell were appointed as builders. Bro. Lewis was the man to put up the structure and Bro. Worrell the roof.
The members of the church worked night and day with the building.
Mixing concrete and carrying it to the builders, the little children worked too. The young people of the church put themselves into the building effort and painted and puttied, putting up the ceilings. Bro. F. Bovell took on the wiring of the church. In February, 1980 the yard was barbergreen and the church was in full use. The P.A. set was installed.
Some have gone overseas, others have gone to the great beyond, but all have done their duty well. To God be the glory, great things he hath done. And now what shall I say more…….To God be the honour and the glory and the blessings and praise now and forever more.
MINISTERS LOCAL ELDERS
W.W. Withers Leon Clement
A.P Westney Richard Clarke
Milton Neblett Owen Phillips
L.D. Brathwaite David Francis
Lynford Williams Neville Parkinson
Earl Malone David Ollivierre
Leon Phillips Dr. Elliot Douglin
Charles Forde As written by