True Light Missionary Baptist Church was established on March 16, 1935. At that time there was a small and faithful band of 15 worshippers, who all attended worship services regularly in the home located 303 East 34th Street. In this small home, the word of God provided the light to guide their path and the love to inspire fellowship. The membership steadily increased and recognizing the need for a larger church home the congregation moved to a new building at 7010 North Main Street. During Reverend Dickey’s tenure, the church was moved to 7102 North Main.
Between the periods 1935 to 2011, five illustrious and capable pastors have led True Light. Among them were Reverends Ware; Earl Graves; F. L. Dickey; William Bowie, Jr.; and John William Bowie, Sr. Records indicate that Reverends Ware, Earl Graves, and F. L. Dickey served a short period during the periods 1935-1938.
On March 1938, the Reverend William Bowie, Jr., was called to serve as the fourth pastor of True Light. He served this church and community tirelessly for 54 years. Pastor William Bowie, Jr., was very instrumental in building three edifices: a brick church in 1947; a rock-structured sanctuary in 1964; and a glass-engulfed educational activity building in 1969.
Under the divine Leadership of God and our fifth Pastor, The Reverend John William Bowie, Senior, who has the heart of a shepherd, continues to be an instrument in the hand of God served for 18 years. He retired July 2011 and became pastor emeritus.
Though the years 2011 and until 2015 presented struggles and challenges for True Light as did the year 1938 for its faithful few, blessedly, the current fellowship has the benefit of a varied and victorious past to act as an encouragement toward new victories in Christ.
With the Church facing major challenges, Retired Pastor Bowie, Pastor Emeritus realized that the Church must have a Shepherd to feed the Sheep on a regular basis. Being obedient to the Holy Spirit, he was led and inspired by God to seek help from Bishop James W. E. Dixon, II.
In 2011, our pastorship became vacant upon the retirement of Pastor John William Bowie, Sr. The members went through a four-year period of listening, waiting, watching, and praying for direction from God for a new spiritual leader.
Bishop James W. E. Dixon, II of the Community of Faith Church was appointed to serve as interim pastor until God send us a pastor. On October 2, 2014, Interim Pastor, Bishop James Dixon, II, reconstructed plans to move the church to the next level.
Under his leadership, a leadership counsel and a pulpit committee were implemented.
During Bishop Dixon tenure, he continues to provide counseling and guidance with leaders and ministries. It was Bishop Dixon’s immense faith and desires to see the church body draw closer to Christ during the Church Family’s changing and challenging season.
Bishop Dixon’s official tenure ended on September 13, 2015. However, he continued to serve until the first Sunday of November 2015.
September 2015 brought about a new chapter in True Light’s history. September 13, 2015, the church members elected Reverend Anthony F. Halley, II as pastor-elect of True Light Missionary Baptist Church.
November 8, 2015, Reverend Halley preached his first sermon. During his transition to Houston, Texas and True Light, God tested Reverend Halley’s faith as he made preparations for the move. After the test, Pastor Halley brought us an inspiring sermon on Sunday, December 13, 2015.
As the sixth pastor of the True Light Missionary Baptist Church, Reverend Anthony F. Halley, II immediately began to make his mark by implementing organizational changes and improvements.
Having worked as a youth Pastor for his former churches, he is committed to implementing programs for the young adult and children. Pastor Halley immediately involved the young adult in taking an active leadership role in church ministries. He renamed Wednesday’s Bible Study to “Refuel Wednesday.”
Pastor announced that he would be teaching Sunday school on the first Sunday of each month. Reverend Halley brought back “Watch Night Service” to True Light. January 3, 2016, Minister Jerrel Thomas was appointed assistant pastor.
Reverend Anthony F. Halley, II was officially installed as the sixth pastor of True Light on February 28, 2016. An elaborate pastoral installation service was given that included city officials, county officials, representatives of the historic independent heights, local and out-of-town churches, and the community witnessed such a momentous occasion. This momentous occasion was witnessed by many.
Under Pastor Halley’s brief tenure, new members united with the church and former members have restored their memberships. February 2016, Pastor Halley performed his first christening.
Now as the first family of True Light, Pastor Halley, and First Lady Jenay, aspire to set a platform for God to create a growing ministry where members can openly worship and learn about God’s word.
As True Light moves forward, it will continue to carry the legacy of its past, walk in the blessings of the present and strive for the manifestation of the Holy Spirit in its future.