And Jesus said… “Upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. Matt. 16:18
Lilydale Progressive Missionary Baptist Church was organized by Rev. D.C. Trice, Sister Mary Johnson, Deacon John Ford, and others in 1913. Between its inception and the year 1915, Rev. T.E. Brown and Rev. V. Robinson served as pastors respectively. Under the leadership of Rev. Robinson, the church home was finally located on property donated by Sis. Mary Johnson at 41 West 95th Street. After 14 years and having survived a war, the turmoil of the 20’s and the depression years, the leadership was passed from Rev. Robinson to Rev. B.R. Laden, who served both God and the Lilydale Community for six years.
Rev. T. N. Davis served from 1938 to 1942 at which time Rev. Samuel W. Wyatt was given the leadership. In 1944, Rev. Wyatt recommended that the name of the church be changed to Lilydale Progressive Missionary Baptist Church. He also organized four choirs and two clubs. The dedication of the new church was on Sunday, May 16, 1954. Rev. Wyatt served faithfully until his resignation in 1957. Later in that year, Rev. Lawrence R. Jackson was called to be the Pastor. Under the guidance of the Holy Spirit and the motto, “Follow Me While I Follow Christ”. A $65,000 mortgage was paid off on October 29, 1967. Lilydale was relocated to its present edifice in 1971. The church celebrated its 59th Anniversary with a second mortgage burning. On August 29, 1984 after 26 years of faithful service to God and Lilydale, God called Pastor Jackson home to a greater reward.
On March 10, 1985, Rev. Lawrence E. Mosley, Sr. of Richmond, VA was presented as Pastor-Elect and on July 21, 1985, was installed as Pastor. Establishing his motto, “Determined to Live for Christ”, Pastor Mosley quickly distinguished himself as a very capable leader and improved many aspects of the church and it’s ministries-including the establishment of an aggressive outreach ministry; an ongoing commitment to the study of God’s Word; spirit-filled worship; increased church membership; fervent support of our youth and their educational endeavors; and a strong effort to improve the administrative aspects of the church. On July 17, 1997, after 12 years of dedicated service to the Lord and Lilydale, Pastor Mosley was suddenly called to his place of “promise and reward”.
We began the 86th year in the history of our church with much rejoicing and thankful hearts for the manifold blessings God had bestowed upon us.
Rev. Rubin Ervin, II, was installed as Pastor on November 29, 1998. He served the congregation as Pastor for 5 years. Pastor Ervin adopted the motto: “All Hands Are Needed”.
On September 12, 2004, the congregation voted to extend the call of leadership to Rev. Romell Williams. Since that time, we have witnessed significant numerical expansion, astronomical spiritual growth, a renewed commitment to the study of God’s word as a result of Pastor Williams’ anointed preaching and teaching. Pastor Williams has adopted as mission statement for Lilydale “Progressively Pursuing the Expansion of God’s Kingdom” and has introduced as our vision statement “We believe that God has called us to be devoted disciples who co-labor with Christ to expose, explain, and experience God’s purpose in the lives of all people as we creatively bridge the gap of age diversity.”
Under the leadership of Pastor Williams, Lilydale is evolving into a Millennium Ministry. Numerous new ministries have been added to support the health and growth of the Lilydale Family. Our physical structure has been completely renovated and a new baptismal pool installed in the main sanctuary so that our church is now a physical representation of our vision statement. As we progressively pursue the expansion of God’s Kingdom, look at what God has done in the past 5 years.
As Pastor Williams continues to lead us and we expand on our Past to the glory of God, “Eyes have not seen, nor ears heard, neither has it entered into the heart of man, the great things in which God has prepared for them that love him.” Praises to God and the great things that God has in store for the future of Lilydale Progressive Missionary Baptist Church!