East New­ton Bap­tist looks back

The Covington News - - Religion - By Colleen Capes Jack­son

Church that started in mo­bile unit cel­e­brates 25 years of growth and fel­low­ship

Sun­day, Oct. 12 will be a day of cel­e­bra­tion for East New­ton Bap­tist Church as they wel­come old and new ac­quain­tances into their sanc­tu­ary for home­com­ing and their 25th an­niver­sary.

“We are gath­er­ing to­gether for home­com­ing to cel­e­brate the past, to con­tinue to pro­claim Je­sus Christ in the present, and to press on with Christ in the fu­ture,” said the Rev. Tom L. Lee, pas­tor of East New­ton Bap­tist Church. “We want our church to be a place where peo­ple hear the gospel and see it change their lives as they grow in their faith.”

The home­com­ing ser­vice will be­gin at 10:30 a.m. with a wel­come by the Rev. Tom L. Lee, pas­tor of East New­ton Bap­tist Church. The Rev. Larry Cheek will bring greet­ings from the Stone Moun­tain Bap­tist As­so­ci­a­tion. An eight minute video pre­sen­ta­tion of the his­tory of ENBC is sure to bring laugh­ter and tears as the church is re­minded of those who have at­tended and sup­ported the church faith­fully over the past 25 years.

For­mer pas­tor, the Rev. B.G. How­ell, will bring the home­com­ing mes­sage.

“He came to us di­rectly out of sem­i­nary as a church planter and stayed on as our first pas­tor,” said Al­ton Jor­dan, chair­man of the home­com­ing com­mit­tee. “He was very in­stru­men­tal in get­ting this build­ing we are in.”

South­ern gospel group, New Again with Ed Nolan, Greg and Wendy Cham­bers, Holly McCul­lough and Ran­dall David­son will be in con­cert dur­ing the morn­ing ser­vice and again im­me­di­ately fol­low­ing din­ner on the grounds.

“We will sing our sig­na­ture song, ‘New Again’,” said Ed Nolan, founder of the south­ern gospel group. “You’ll hear some of our new-old fa­vorites, ‘Good Morn­ing, Lord’ and ‘His Name was John.’ We don’t just come in to en­ter­tain; we come to present Je­sus Christ through song and through the word.”

Each fam­ily will be given an ENBC cof­fee mug as a thank you for at­tend­ing. They will be asked to re­mem­ber the church with prayer each time they use the mug.

The his­tory of the church be­gan on May 22, 1983, when Cal­vary Bap­tist Church voted to plant a mis­sion and pur­chased 16.758 acres at $3,000 per acre from W.S. Cook. On Oc­to­ber 23, 1983, ENBC held its first Sun­day ser­vice with the Rev. Her­bert F. Wood­yard in a leased sin­gle-wide mo­bile unit.

Wood­yard and the Rev. Franks Daws led wor­ship ser­vices for 13 weeks un­til the Rev. Ben Har­ris was asked by the mis­sion com­mit­tee to serve as in­terim pas­tor. The Rev. Dickie John­son led their first re­vival ser­vice. A dou­ble-wide mo­bile chapel was added on Septem­ber 1984 and the Rev. G.B. How­ell was called as pas­tor the fol­low­ing March. An ad­di­tional class­room was made avail­able by the do­na­tion of a 12 foot by 24 foot build­ing in 1986.

For­mer pas­tors who were in­stru­men­tal in grow­ing ENBC from its orig­i­nal mem­ber- ship of 24 to 218 in­clude the Rev. Her­bert Wood­yard, the Rev. Frank Daws, the Rev. Ben Har­ris, the Rev. G.B. How­ell, Jr., the Rev. Dan Shad­doch, the Rev. Jim Size­more, the Rev. D.D. Har­ris, the Rev. David Stokes, the Rev. Huey Perry, the Rev. Jeff Bishop, the Rev. Ken Kirby, the Rev. Stan­ley Young and the Rev. Hoyt John­son.

A note burn­ing cer­e­mony was held in 1987 pay­ing off the land. ENBC be­gan plan­ning to­ward es­tab­lish­ing them­selves as an in­de­pen­dent church. On Novem­ber 19, 1989, they held a build­ing ded­i­ca­tion ser­vice.

The church has made sig­nif­i­cant ren­o­va­tions to in­clude brick­ing the ex­te­rior, the ad­di­tion of a stor­age area and kitchen cab­i­nets, re­placed pews with chairs, added new ta­bles for the fel­low­ship hall, placed a canopy over the en­trance way and pur­chased an ice ma­chine. Fu­ture plans for the next phase in­clude a new fel­low­ship hall and kitchen, a pre-school wing, a multi-pur­pose room

Mandi Singer/The Cov­ing­ton News

(Above) East New­ton Bap­tist Church Pas­tor Tom Lee, left, stands with mu­si­cal group New Again mem­bers Pat Nolan and Ed Nolan in front of the church. New Again will per­form at the 25th Home­com­ing Cel­e­bra­tion for East New­ton Bap­tist Church on Oc­to­ber 12.

For­mer pas­tor B.G. How­ell will speak at the home­com­ing ser­vice.

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