The Second Missionary Baptist Church of Battle Creek is proud to share its long and rich history of faith and fellowship with you. Read below to learn more about the origins of Second Missionary Baptist and where we are today as a congregation under the leadership of Senior Pastor, Rev. William J. Wyne, Jr.
Several years prior to 1849 a group of Christians, known as the Second Baptist Society, began meeting in different homes to have religious services, in 1849, this group was organized as the Second Baptist Church by the Reverends Parmalee and Harris at a meeting held at the First Baptist Church.The first official pastor was Rev. J.W. Lackley and the first house of worship was a frame building purchased from the First United Methodist Church in 1859 and moved to 323 East Michigan Avenue. The cornerstone for the first church built by the congregation at the Michigan Avenue site was laid in 1895 when Rev. C.R. Brown was pastor.
On June 24, 1924 Rev. E.L. Todd was installed as the seventeenth pastor. The church was incorporated as the Second Missionary Baptist Church during his tenure.
Rev. Paul D. Bigby was called in 1947. During his pastorate, land was purchased on North Washington Avenue and groundbreaking service for the present church was on May 27, 1962. Members formed a motorcade on December 23, 1962 to move from East Michigan Avenue to 485 North Washington Avenue.
After the untimely death of Rev. Bigby in December of 1966, Rev. Gilbert L. Jackson was elected in May of 1967. The Bell Tower on the south side of the present church was the fulfillment of Pastor Bigby’s dream. It was erected and dedicated to his memory on December 1, 1968. The church mortgage burning ceremony was held September 9, 1973.
Rev. Albert Thomas was called in June of 1978. His ministry broadened the outreach ministry and began various new ministries. Pastor Thomas retired in July of 1998.
Rev. William J. Wyne, Jr. began his service as the twenty first pastor in January of 1999. Rev. Wyne came to us with the fervor of a God called preacher. His leadership awakened an intense passion in the congregation to have a deeper commitment. That leadership has projected the vision of a Family Life Center addition as the ultimate goal. He has also followed one of his many dreams for the church by establishing a community Development Corporation under the name of “Second’s New Vision and Outreach Ministries.”
Under Rev. Wyne’s leadership in 2000, the Michigan Historical Society recognized Second Missionary Baptist Church with a historical marker indicating the Church as a Historical Site. That year the church celebrated its Sesquicentennial Church Anniversary.
Image of the Church's historical marker that reads "Second Baptist Church: Calling themselves the Second Baptist Society, a small group of Battle Creek African Americans worshiped in their homes prior to 1849. That year, led by the Reverends Parmelee and Harris of the white First Baptist Church, they officially organized as a church and purchased a building from the Methodists. The Reverend J.W. Lackley was the first pastor. In 1930 the congregation incorporated as the Second Baptist Church. Michigan Historical Center, Department of State Registered Local Site NO. 2082, Property of The State of Michigan, 2000"