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Tulare Missionary Baptist Church
The Tulare Missionary Baptist Church is a Bible-believing New Testament church of Jesus Christ. It is dedicated to giving glory to the Lord through obedience to His Word. This church is an independent assembly of believers with no head except Jesus and no headquarters except heaven. For most of her existence, however, she has freely chosen to associate with the churches of the American Baptist Association.
The following is a brief history of the Tulare Missionary Baptist Church as recalled by Bro. Haskell Darst, a beloved deacon of the church who has gone on to be with the Lord:
"On February 16, 1941 following a series of revival meetings, held at the old Legion hall on No. K. Street, Tulare, California, a group of nine people opened a business conference for the purpose of organizing a New Testament Church, to be known as the Tulare Missionary Baptist Church. A missionary from Salinas, Bro. John Cooper was elected to moderate the proceedings. Besides the mission at Salinas, three other churches participated; Ducor, Corcoran, and Pixley. There were six people added to the original group the same day and, after the evening service, two more were added, making a total of seventeen members.
In November, 1942 the church rented a building on the corner of Sacramento and Kern Street at the cost of $10.00 monthly. In March, 1944 the church purchased four lots on the corner of California and Kern Streets for a total of $180.00.
In May of 1944 the church drew up plans for a new building to measure 30 by 54 feet "1620 sq. feet" at an estimated cost of $2,500.00. Construction began in 1945. In February, 1949 a house was purchased and moved on the church property to serve as a parsonage.
In 1962, classrooms were added on the East and West sides of the church building, and 2 new bathrooms built. What this adds up to is the old facility which we recently (1991) sold to the Tulare Living Christ Church.
For most of its existence the Tulare Missionary Baptist Church has been affiliated with the Cooperative Association of California, and the American Baptist Association."
Following is a list of all the Pastors, past and present:
Bro. John Cooper, 1941
Lee Dowdle, 1941-42
Ora True, 1942-43
Dow Sheppard, 1943-45
Charlie Price, 1945-48
L.E. Hatfield, 1948-50
Troy Mize, 1950-52
L.E. Hatfield, 1952-53
Lester McAlister, 1953-57
Clint Wilkins, 1957-59
Jeff Sweeney, 1959-61
Alvin Mayall, 1961-65
K.G. McKellip, 1965-75
Floyd Dawson, 1975-76
Keith Newton, 1976-86
Bill Hoppert, 1986-88
Dewayne Hoppert, 1988-2016
Scott Brooks, 2016-Present
This church is indebted to the many faithful members such as Bro. and Sis. Darst who have served the Lord in this church and have gone on to be with their Lord.
During the construction of its present facility in 1991, the church adopted a theme song that is an apt description of the gratitude of the present membership to those whom they have followed and a commitment to others who will follow us until our Lord returns; "May Those Who Come Behind Us Find Us Faithful"!