The Church's one foundation is Jesus Christ her Lord. She is His new creation by water and the Word. From heaven He came and sought her to be His holy bride. With His own blood He bought her and for her life He died. "On this rock I will build my Church and the gates of Hades will not overcome it." Matthew 16:18. The Mount Calvary Baptist Church of Springfield, Massachusetts began in a two story building on Old Bridge Street in West Springfield, Massachusetts on May 16, 1919 with the first pastor and founder, Reverend Silas L. Dupree and seven members. Later in 1919, the church was recognized and became a member of the Westfield Baptist Association.
By April 1920, the church membership had grown to 150 members of which the majority wanted to move across the river to Springfield. They acquired the Old Patch home on Auburn Street which was renovated into a meeting hall. This location soon became too small for the increasing congregation of 400 members. Subsequently, the members purchased the Beth Israel Congregation on Grays Avenue in July 1924. The property had to be thoroughly renovated with much of the work done by the members and friends. Reverend Dupree did most of the plastering and masonry work. The auditorium held 600 people and below it was the Sunday School room and a covered passageway that led to the social and club rooms in the basement of the parsonage. Adjoining was a brick building with the choir room and office. Following Reverend Dupree's homegoing,
Reverend James H. Hamer (1943-1951) came to Mount Calvary and under his incumbency additional ministries were formed; the Gospel Choir, Usher Board No. 3, and the Willing Workers Club organized by the late Sister Elizabeth Robinson. Reverend Hamer founded the Faith Baptist Church in Springfield, Massachusetts. In February 1951.
Reverend Herbert S. Sumpter (1951-1955) succeeded Reverend Hamer and under his leadership the Evangelical Covenant Building which is our present house of worship, was purchased for $40,000. Several deacons and trustees of the church contributed their own money to help purchase this building because the bank wouldn't give the church a loan. In 1955 Pastor Sumpter organized the Friendship Baptist Church in Springfield, Massachusetts.
Reverend D. Edward Wells (1955-1964) hailed from New York City and became Mount Calvary's fourth pastor. During these years the Mt. Calvary Baptist Brotherhood Federal Credit Union (later renamed the D. Edward Wells Federal Credit Union) was organized on February 12, 1959. Reverend Wells burned the first mortgage on the church on May 25, 1961 and on December 23, 1963 the church purchased the property at 32 Plainfield Street and it became the new home for the Wells family. God called Reverend Wells home on September 7, 1964 after several years of faithful service. He was sadly missed.
Reverend Robert E. Rasberry (1965-1973) , a native of Philadelphia and raised in New York City came to Mount Calvary with his family in 1965. While serving as pastor he was the Pioneer Valley Baptist Moderator and an associate professorat Springfield Technical Community College lecturing in philosophy. Additional ministries were formed under his tenure. The interracial and interfaith ministry, the Women's Ensemble the Choraleers and Chancel Choirs. The church purchased the property on 1347 South Branch Parkway and raised $7,000 to purchase two buses for the church. Reverend Rasberry resigned in 1973.
Mount Calvary's sixth pastor, Reverend Gordon C. O'Neal, Jr. (1974-1993) a native of Portsmouth, Virginia preached his first sermon in August 1974 and was installed on October 15, 1974. Numerous ministries and accomplishments was achieved under his leadership..
Reverend Walter Thompson, Jr. (1994-2001) came to Mount Calvary from Vine Memorial Baptist Church in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania where he served as Associate Pastor. Reverend Thompson's Pastoral Leadership brought many wonderful changes to the church through reinvigorated all teaching ministries and . Recruitment and training a revitalized Deaconate Ministry. In 2003, Sister Marie High donated new hymnals in memory of her husband the late Lester High Sr.
Our eighth pastor, Reverend Johnny M. Wilson, Jr. (2003-2006) was installed on July 20, 2003. A native of Monroe Louisiana, Reverend Wilson grew up in Rochester, New York. Under his tenure he consecrated a new group of Deaconess and the church was renovated. A lighted steeple was installed in April 2004, donated by Deaconess Wadie Caudle in honor of her late husband Deacon Albert Caudle.
Reverend Mark E. Flowers was called to Mount Calvary Baptist Church on August 1, 2008 to become its ninth Pastor. With particular emphases on worship, Pastor Flowers instituted lection and liturgy as vital rubrics to congregational worship gatherings. Several ministries have been established, the official boards have been revamped, the Music Ministry has been restructured, and the church has embarked on three major projects.
In addition, Mount Calvary is affiliated with several organizations including the National Baptist Convention, the American Baptist Churches, the Council of Churches, Church Women United, and the CICUA (ushers organization). We also participate in outreach ministries such as the Foreign Mission, the Prison Ministry and the Open Pantry. Mount Calvary continues to grow both spiritually and physically as its believers remain One on Solomon's Portico.