South Carolina General Assembly
113th Session, 1999-2000

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Bill 5054

Indicates Matter Stricken
Indicates New Matter

                    Current Status

Bill Number:                      5054
Type of Legislation:              Concurrent Resolution CR
Introducing Body:                 House
Introduced Date:                  20000510
Primary Sponsor:                  Parks
All Sponsors:                     Parks, Allen, Allison, Altman, Askins, 
                                  Bailey, Bales, Barfield, Barrett, Battle, 
                                  Bowers, Breeland, G. Brown, H. Brown, 
                                  J. Brown, T. Brown, Campsen, Canty, Carnell, 
                                  Cato, Chellis, Clyburn, Cobb-Hunter, Cooper, 
                                  Cotty, Dantzler, Davenport, Delleney, 
                                  Easterday, Edge, Emory, Fleming, Frye, Gamble, 
                                  Gilham, Gourdine, Govan, Hamilton, Harrell, 
                                  Harris, Harrison, Harvin, Haskins, Hawkins, 
                                  Hayes, J. Hines, M. Hines, Hinson, Hosey, 
                                  Howard, Huggins, Inabinett, Jennings, Keegan, 
                                  Kelley, Kennedy, Kirsh, Klauber, Knotts, Koon, 
                                  Lanford, Law, Leach, Lee, Limehouse, 
                                  Littlejohn, Lloyd, Loftis, Lourie, Lucas, 
                                  Mack, Maddox, Martin, McCraw, McGee, McKay, 
                                  M. McLeod, W. McLeod, McMahand, 
                                  Meacham-Richardson, Miller, Moody-Lawrence, 
                                  J.H. Neal, J.M. Neal, Neilson, Ott, Perry, 
                                  Phillips, Pinckney, Quinn, Rhoad, Rice, Riser, 
                                  Robinson, Rodgers, Rutherford, Sandifer, 
                                  Scott, Seithel, Sharpe, Sheheen, Simrill, 
                                  F. Smith, J. Smith, R. Smith, D. Smith, 
                                  Stille, Stuart, Taylor, Townsend, Tripp, 
                                  Trotter, Vaughn, Walker, Webb, Whatley, 
                                  Whipper, Wilder, Wilkes, Wilkins, Witherspoon, 
                                  Woodrum and Young-Brickell
Drafted Document Number:          l:\council\bills\psd\7240jm00.doc
Date Bill Passed both Bodies:     20000511
Subject:                          Morris Chapel Baptist Church of Greenwood 
                                  County, Resolutions


Body    Date      Action Description                     Com     Leg Involved
______  ________  ______________________________________ _______ ____________
House   20000511  Received from Senate
Senate  20000511  Introduced, adopted, returned
                  with concurrence
House   20000510  Introduced, adopted, sent to Senate

              Versions of This Bill

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(Text matches printed bills. Document has been reformatted to meet World Wide Web specifications.)



Whereas, the Reverend Frank Morris organized Morris Chapel Baptist Church in Greenwood (then in Abbeville County) in the year 1865; and

Whereas, land for the church was given by Isaac Evans, first Superintendent of the Sunday School and uncle of C. H. Evans, who was second Superintendent of the Sunday School; and

Whereas, after Morris Chapel Baptist Church was first organized, church members used a brush arbor under which to worship, but the church and the members have come a long, long way from that day of one hundred thirty-five years ago; and

Whereas, when winter came, with still no church building in those earliest days of the church, a local Presbyterian church allowed Morris Chapel to use its old building for worship; and

Whereas, Morris Chapel was born during a very troubled time, the Civil War had just ended, and it was a time of unrest and uncertainty; it was a very difficult time for a people who had been so long in bondage and slavery, but newly-freed African-Americans set out to carve their place in American society; and, as a result, Morris Chapel Baptist Church was born; and

Whereas, during the administration of Reverend J. S. Marshall, in 1893, the church was rebuilt; under the administration of Reverend J. T. Dunbar, a bell was installed in the bell tower; and the bell is now installed in the bell tower of the present sanctuary; and

Whereas, over the generations, the members have built Morris Chapel Baptist Church into a thriving, dynamic congregation that meets the spiritual needs of its members and generously serves the community; and

Whereas, the Reverend H. B. Mitchell had the longest tenure of any pastor at Morris Chapel and the church experienced its greatest growth; Morris Chapel had the largest membership in Greenwood (around eight hundred and around five hundred of these became members during Reverend Mitchell's pastorate); at the time of Reverend Mitchell's retirement in 1968, he had successfully led the congregation in another effort to raise funds to build a new church -- the building in which the members presently worship; and

Whereas, Reverend Mitchell was called to the church in 1935; he helped the church members get rid of their debts; he made improvements both inside and outside the church building and repaired the parsonage; in 1946, under Reverend Mitchell's pastorate, the church held a building fund rally and began a campaign for a brick-veneer building; the cornerstone for the remodeled building was laid on August 31, 1947; and

Whereas, the Reverend Dr. Ed F. Johnson was called to Morris Chapel Baptist Church in 1969; on his first day in the pulpit as pastor, Dr. Johnson admonished his congregation to leave Morris Chapel and get involved with people in the community and make Christ known to them; his first sermon, "Away from Morris Chapel", came from Matthew 29:19-20; Dr. Johnson went right to work getting to know his membership and building relationships with people within and without Morris Chapel; he made excellent use of the local newspaper in Greenwood to gain exposure by announcing the church's activities and writing letters to the editor; he preached strong sermons and scheduled frequent meetings with various groups; he organized a youth choir called the "Ed Johnson Singers" -- an energetic group of young people who helped bring the Spirit back to the church; later, a children's choir was organized and, subsequently, an all-boys choir; these three choirs were later combined and named the "Morris Chapel Youth Choir" and, subsequently, the "Morris Chapel Young People's Choir"; Ms. Shirley Brooks played for these choirs; this group traveled throughout the upper Piedmont and many other places in the State and made a memorable trip to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; and

Whereas, Dr. Johnson also combined the Senior Choir and the Young Adult Choir to form one senior musical choir; the choir stand in the old building had to undergo renovation to accommodate this combined choir; the Gospel Chorus was the only group in the church's music department left intact; and

Whereas, the new parsonage for the church was begun in 1969, completed in 1970, and paid for by 1973 -- a great achievement for Morris Chapel; in Spring 1973, ground was broken for a new church building and the building was completed and dedicated in 1974; the grand total cost, including furnishings and an Allen organ, was two hundred forty-two thousand dollars; and

Whereas, early in his ministry at Morris Chapel, Pastor Johnson gained the respect of the young people in Greenwood; his doors were always open, and his study at home was frequented by young people and parents seeking counsel and advice; and

Whereas, Morris Chapel Baptist Church has very much been a part of the history of Greenwood and of Greenwood County; Morris Chapel has experienced many phases of American history: the ending of the Civil War, the coming of freedom, Reconstruction, Jim Crow, integration, and the end of segregation and today the move to establish an authentic role of leadership in the community, State, and nation; and

Whereas, today Morris Chapel Baptist Church has a very large membership; the church is concerned for the spiritual development of its youth and has a very progressive and successful Sunday School program and ministry; the church has many outstanding organizations that assist the church members, as well as the community, in numerous ways; Morris Chapel has gotten thoroughly involved in the community and has made Jesus known among the people of the community; church members are dedicated, hard working, and devoted to their religious beliefs and calling; Morris Chapel Baptist Church truly has a wonderful future ahead of it and is an integral part of the life and accomplishments of Greenwood and Greenwood County; and

Whereas, we are greatly pleased to have the opportunity to recognize this great congregation on such a joyful occasion. Now, therefore,

Be it resolved by the House of Representatives, the Senate concurring:

That the General Assembly of the State of South Carolina, by this resolution, recognizes and honors Morris Chapel Baptist Church of Greenwood County on the joyful occasion of its one hundred thirty-fifth anniversary and wishes the pastor and church members a bright future and many more years of success, happiness, and achievements.

Be it further resolved that a copy of this resolution be forwarded to Morris Chapel Baptist Church, in care of the church's pastor, the Reverend Anthony McCallum.


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