The first organizational meeting for Community Church of God was held in January, 1966 in the home of Mr. and Mrs. Richard (Manilla) Riley. Founding members were Pastor Rudolph Smith, his parents Bro. Andrew and Sis. Lizzie Smith,Sis. Annie Dixon, Sis. Pearl McClendon, Sis. Daisy Odum, Sis. Mollie Peters, Sis. Manilla Riley and Sis. Catheryn Smith. On February 27 of that same year, the first worship service for the newly established church was held in the chapel of Alphonso Dawson Mortuary, with services scheduled twice monthly.
Recognizing the need for more regular services, Pastor Rudolph and members moved to the home of Bro. Herman and Sis. Catheryn Smith and began meeting weekly. On October 2, 1966 the growing congregation relocated to the chapel of Hines Funeral Home. On May 17, 1970 the church moved to its present location at 850 Cascade Ave.
Pastor Rudolph Smith assumed full time pastoral responsibilities in September of 1973 and in less than three years, on January 25, 1976 the church burned the $60,000 mortgage on the Cascade Avenue property.
With a vision for the future, the church undertook its first major building fund campaign in 1978, beginning construction on the Cascade Ave. property in 1979. The new sanctuary was dedicated in 1980. The mortgage on this property was retired six years later, on October 22, 1986.
Community Church of God has always had a heart for outreach, and in 1983 began its food pantry for the needy. In 1985 the church purchased the Salvation Army Thrift Store adjacent to the church property. In time, this building would become known as VICARS (Volunteers in Community and Related Services), dedicated in 1989.
In February, 1996 Pastor Rudolph Smith celebrated 45 years of service in Christian ministry and 30 years as pastor of Community Church of God.
February 1998 marked the beginning of a new era in the church's history when Michael A. Smith was called as pastor-elect to succeed his father. The mantle was officially passed in May with the installation service on October 11, 1998.
Under Pastor Michael's visionary leadership our congregation made several transitions which have enriched our fellowship including our worship celebration, organizational structure and technological advances. We purchased four additional properties including the Rudolph Smith Ministry Center.
During this time period, an even greater emphasis was placed on community outreach programs. The church partners with Remerge (formerly Church on the Street) on Friday evenings during the summer and provides block parties to the community on the church park.
The food pantry was reformatted into the Community Marketplace where persons in need are able to shop and make their own food choices. Additionally, our local outreach ministries include prison, hospital, nursing home, grief counseling, health resources, and emotional restoration.
In May 2016, Community celebrated 50 years of ministry and service.
2017 - present
It is our desire for the church to expand service to the community as a reflection of God’s love to us. Pastor Michael endeavors to continue the legacy of his father through the strength of his leadership in pastoral care, Christian education and church administration. Building on a solid foundation, Pastor Michael is diligently seeking to lead the church into twenty first century ministry.
While the message of the church has not changed, the methodologies of communicating the message are constantly changing. The basic Christian message is love and forgiveness which should transform our lives.
We must also remember that we are saved to serve. Serving is executing the ministry that our Lord has assigned to us. And in the years to come we will continue to celebrate and build upon our legacy of love and service.