2007 Regular Session

To: Rules

By: Representative Mims

House Concurrent Resolution 80

(As Adopted by House and Senate)


     WHEREAS, Fernwood Baptist Church, which began its journey, "Standing on the Promises," on Sunday, May 19, 1907, when 15 people met at the old Fernwood School and entered into a covenant with "God and each other" to form a Baptist church for the Fernwood Community, will celebrate its 100th anniversary this year; and

     WHEREAS, in July 1908, a building program was begun and by September 1st of that year, $3,000.00 had been raised towards the building of the church, when Fernwood Lumber Company donated the land and matched dollar for dollar the contributions of church members, allowing the edifice, a one-room structure, to be ready for Sunday service by December 1, 1908; and

     WHEREAS, for more than 17 years the church continued to grow and serve a growing vibrant community, when disaster struck in March 1927, upon the closing of the operation of Fernwood Lumber Company, causing an economic depression in the Fernwood Community, which had a severe impact upon Fernwood Baptist Church, forcing the local postmaster to become a door-to-door solicitor of funds to pay the church's utility bill; and

     WHEREAS, in a meeting held on November 6, 1927, to determine the fate of the church, the members, with an unshakable faith, voted to keep the church doors open until the end of the year; and

     WHEREAS, during the Great Depression hardships continued, but with the enduring faith that God would provide for his people, Fernwood Baptist Church began a building program, and in 1934, under the leadership of Dr. J.R. Carter, construction was completed on a new Sunday School room annex, furnace and baptistery; and

     WHEREAS, from the late 1940s until 1961, the church was led by Brother W.W. Tipton, a time during which a new organ and piano were purchased, and saw the addition of new Sunday School rooms with nursery and other annexations; and

     WHEREAS, from 1974 until 1979, Fernwood Baptist Church was led by a true man of God, Houston Phiffer Porter, whose love, warmth and vigor infused the church with a renewed spiritual vitality, and whose leadership oversaw the remodeling of the pastor's home, the bricking of the church and the placement of a new steeple; and

     WHEREAS, in 1986, under the leadership of Brother Wright Eavenson, the construction of a fellowship hall and educational facility was begun, and dedicated in 1989; and

     WHEREAS, currently under the leadership of Pastor J. Frank Smith, Fernwood Baptist Church continues its journey reaching souls for the Lord Jesus Christ and continues structural improvements, including new windows, light fixtures and parking arrangements; and

     WHEREAS, with excitement, humility and awe, Fernwood Baptist Church looks back upon its past achievements, and with sincere thankfulness acknowledges God's grace and love, which brought them through many tragedies and have given them triumphant victory; and

     WHEREAS, it is the policy of this Legislature to recognize outstanding and contributory religious institutions such as Fernwood Baptist Church, which continues to be a vital part of the Fernwood Community:

     NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED BY THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES OF THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI, THE SENATE CONCURRING THEREIN, That we do hereby commend and congratulate the diligence of the pastors and members of Fernwood Baptist Church upon the occasion of the church's 100th year anniversary and extend warmest wishes for continued prosperity, spiritual growth and success.

     BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, That copies of this resolution be furnished to Fernwood Baptist Church and to the members of the Capitol Press Corps.