The History of Hopewell Baptist Church

 According to a history of Hopewell Baptist Church in A History of Current River Association, Hopewell Baptist Church was first organized in 1886 by Brother Tom Watson.  His wife Mary said, “Oh, I hope it goes well,” so they named it Hopewell.

According to a member of the John Park family, who were faithful members of the church from its beginning;  the church was reorganized in 1906.  Meetings were conducted in the Watson School House located on the present site of the home of Mrs. Alma Curtis, until a building was erected at the present location.

Hopewell became part of the Current River Baptist Association in 1908.  Our first preserved minutes begin with a baptismal service in August of 1908.  In 1910, a list of female members had over 105 names.  Most of the list of male members has been lost, but contained names that most would recognize such as, Watson, Park, Huggins, Carter, Jonas, Johnson, Curtis, Miller, Winningham, Adams, Griffin, Bellah, Lyons, Whittenburg, Ingram, Mabry, and several others.

The original church building burned in 1929.  The present building, built in the shape of a cross, was built while Brother Hubert Johnson was pastor in 1930.

We shared a pastor with Shiloh Baptist Church, having preaching every other Sunday until 1959, when Brother J. D. Midkiff became our Pastor.  He volunteered to preach full-time for what we were paying for part-time preaching.  Under Brother Midkiff’s leadership, we started a building fund and built our educational building.  He brought some of his students from Southern Baptist College to help with the construction of the building.  Some of the students later preached revivals for us.  At one time he wanted to leave to pastor a church near Ravenden Springs so that he could help build up Current River Baptist Association summer camp.  We persuaded him that he could do that and remain our pastor.

He served our church for 15 years until he had to retire because of his health.  In 1959, we celebrated our 50th anniversary with Brother Behannon of Southern Baptist College as our speaker.

Since most of our members had April birthdays we had an April birthday dinner which later developed into an annual homecoming dinner that was well attended by non-resident members.  This lasted for several years as long as there were enough of us to prepare a large dinner.

In spite of the fact that we have had many outstanding pastors, and have fostered many who have gone out to serve faithfully in other churches, our attendance in the eighties and nineties fell to a faithful few.  Many who served faithfully have gone on to be with the Lord.  People who come to visit are disappointed that those members are no longer with us.

Although we are a small church, we have received many awards for generous giving to missions.

When Brother J. D. Passmore, former Current River Baptist Missionary, became our pastor the church began to grow again and has continued to do so.  His grandson, Brother Steven Baily has joined him as associate pastor.

We enjoy close fellowship and love for each other that people comment on when they visit or first come to be a part of our church.

May we continue to be salt and light to the community until Christ returns.

Written by Mrs. Alma Curtis, on the occasion of Hopewell's 100th anniversary, celebrated October 28, 2007


W. O. Taylor


Hubert Johnson


C. F. Guinup


Knox Belew


G. E. Neeley


Alvin Wiles


J. T. Midkiff


J. Russell Duffer


Gene McNeeley


Jim Acklin


Audrey Emberton


Keith Marlin


Steve Patterson


Tracy Archibald


Steve Patterson


Bobby Crabb


Greg Keen


Brad Hearkness


Jeff Fisher


Matthew Woodside


J. D. Passmore


Steven Bailey, Jr. (Assoc. Pastor)


Updated 18 Jul 08