Church History

In 1938, under the leadership of Reverend B. T. Grisby, a few gathered in a small building on 41st and
Hooper Street, Los Angeles, California to form Mount Olive Missionary Baptist Church.  These
dedicated few met every Sunday in their tiny location, having a good time in the Lord.  As the word
spread about what was going on in that little building, the congregation grew.  Soon, with a new Pastor,
Reverend Richard White, the church moved to a larger building on 32nd and Morgan Streets.

In 1940 Sister Lonnie Loggins decided it was time Mount Olive praised God in song and with the help
of her daughter, Sister Ottie Loggins, as pianist and
Brother James Rials, Sr., as president, the church’s first choir was formed.  

Also in July 1940, the Senior Usher Board was organized under the administration of Pastor White with
Brother Rials as president.  

During the early years of the church’s development, Deacon Jesse W. Loggins was ordained as a
minister. Reverend Jesse Loggins was elected Pastor when
Pastor White left the pulpit.  Sister Lonnie Loggins was elected Church Secretary and Deacon Richard
Berry as Church Treasurer.

The congregation continued to grow and once again the membership realized the need for more space.  
After scouting for prospective sites, they purchased property on 21st and Naomi Streets.  Property on
43rd and Compton Avenue was also obtained; Pastor Loggins preferred the 43rd Street site and

In 1949 Brother James Rials, Sr., formed a youth choir consisting of ten of the church’s youngsters
ranging from 5 to 11 years of age.  Brother Rials directed the choir and Sister Ottie Rials served as

Deacon Berry resigned as Church Treasurer in 1951 in order to devote more time to other areas in the
church; Deacon Leon Woods succeeded him.  

The following year, 1952, Sister Loggins who was now president of both the Sunday school and
Mission, resigned as Church Secretary and was succeeded by

Sister Hazel F. Davis. It was also in 1952 that Pastor Loggins ordained three new deacons:  Robert
Davis, J.T. Ellis and Charlie Wade.

The pastor’s study, restroom and choir room were added during Pastor Loggins’ pastorship.  Due to the
lack of funds, Pastor Loggins did the majority of the work, with the assistance of Reverend T. T. Turner
and Deacon Robert J. Davis.

Early in 1953, Pastor Loggins became ill.  His illness prohibited his further service and Reverend James
Crudup served as Pastor in his absence.  In August of that same year Pastor Loggins passed away.

Reverend Crudup continued to serve as pastor until 1954 when
Reverend H.P. Parker of Weller Street Baptist Church was elected to the position.

Due to the illness and subsequent death of her husband, Sister Loggins resigned as president of the
General Missions.  Sister Claudia Parker was elected to the office and served until her death in 1966.  
Under Sister Parker’s leadership, the mission grew from two to eight circles including a Sunshine Band
for the young girls.

The Lord continued to bless Mount Olive in the form of new members and in 1957 the building was re-
modeled to include a basement, kitchen and dining area and more seating space in the church sanctuary.

With the possibility of continued expansion in mind, the church considered purchasing property
surrounding the existing church.  In 1966, the church was able to purchase the lot next door.  The
purchase price was $6,000.00.

1968 brought with it the sale of the church’s property on 21st and Naomi Streets.  The sale netted the
church $6,000.00.

Once again the membership was outgrowing the existing structure and in 1974, under the leadership of
Deacon Jasper Brown, a building fund was started with a paper drive.  The membership was to commit
$5.00 to the fund and a special offering was taken every Sunday during the morning worship service.

In 1977, the church had the opportunity to purchase another piece of property; this one located next to
the existing parking lot was purchased for the sum of $13,500.00.

Through a radio show hosted by Brother Prince Dixon, a member of Mount Olive and the church’s
organist, Mr. William Rempal became aware of the church.  After contacting Brother Dixon, Mr.
Rempal decided to donate property valued at $115,000.00 to the church.  The property located at 4300
East Tweedy Boulevard consisted of two stores and parking lots.  The church held on to the donation as
income property until March 1980 when the property was sold and the monies deposited in the
building fund.

Many other fund-raisers were held during these years including musicals and banquets.  Each auxiliary
also donated monies from their individual fund-raising activities.

By November 1981, the membership was ready to start construction on the new home for Mount Olive
Missionary Baptist Church.  A temporary home for the membership was found at Mercy Seat
Missionary Baptist Church, 246 East 53rd Street, Los Angeles, Reverend Alfonso Beard, Pastor.  The
membership worshipped with Mercy Seat Missionary Baptist Church until the completion of the

On the first Sunday in June 1982, Mount Olive marched into their newly completed church home, under
the Pastorship of Reverend H.P. Parker who remained Pastor until his retirement in October 1984.

On June 14, 1985 Reverend Lowell D. Ford was elected Pastor of
Mount Olive.  In that same year, two of Mount Olive’s sons in the ministry were ordained under Pastor
Ford’s leadership: Reverend J. C. Johnson and Reverend Ronald Brown. Reverend Leon Arterberry also
joined the ministerial staff.

In 1986 Sister Hazel F. Davis resigned as Church Clerk after 34 years of faithful service.  Soon
thereafter Sister Dorothy Moore was elected Church Clerk and Financial Secretary.

In 1987 the cornerstone was laid and dedicated to “Jesus Christ, the Chief Cornerstone,” to the founders
and pioneers that have prayed and sacrificed so that the Mount Olive family could have a beautiful
edifice wherein to worship. Brothers Ronald Billups, Lawrence Porter, Herbert Daniels, Alvin Dexter,
Henry Taylor, David Whittaker and Robert Johnson were ordained as Deacons.

In 1989 Reverend Ross Wells was licensed to preach and left the church soon thereafter.  The Mount
Olive Bible Study was renamed in remembrance of our

beloved Susie Cook.  A New Convert Class was formed to aid new members in learning the Bible, with
Mother Vallie Dyer and Sister Hazel Davis as teachers.

In 1990 the Junior Deacon Board was formed to train the future leaders of the church.

In 1991 with treasured memories, a memorial plaque was dedicated to all deceased members of Mount
Olive; names are added to this plaque yearly to form the great cloud of witnesses that have gone from
labor to reward.  In May 1991, one of Mount Olive’s native son; Brother Lester Heath accepted his
calling to the ministry and was licensed to preach the gospel.

In 1992, a church school was organized for the children at
Mount Olive with Sisters Renee Williams, Donna Cook and Lisa Rivers as Directors.

Deacon Billups left the state of California and Deacon Dexter was elected Treasurer.

In 1993, the Willing Workers Circle was organized by Sister Merlene Grace, with Sister Othie
Washington as teacher.  The Brotherhood and Male Chorus banded together and began working in unity,
with Brother Sylvester Banks as Chairman.  The Lord blessed us with two buses for transportation.
Newly ordained
Deacons Johnell Freeman, Ira Moore III, and Sandy Thomas were added to the Board; Sister Dorothy
Southall to the Deaconess Board and Sisters Ruby Willis and Eldora Wainwright to the Mothers Board.

In 1994, Sister Barbara Johnson, President of the Susie Cook Bible Study, organized an Outreach
Mission from the Susie Cook Bible Study.  A mass group of Mount Olive’s singing Angels banded
together as the Mission Choir under the direction of Reverend Leon Arterberry and Sister Nell James.  
Sister Brenda Moore, Sister Dorothy Moore and Reverend Lester Heath organized the annual
Resurrection Weekend.  The Resurrection season consists of the “Seven Last Sayings of Jesus Christ on
the Cross,” Sunrise Service and Youth Easter Program.  

In July 1994, Brothers James Lyles, Willie Bell and Prince Dixon were added to the Deacon Board and
Sister Willie Mae Williams was added to the
Mothers Board.  Reverend Lester Heath was ordained and in March 1995 he left the Mount Olive
family to Pastorate.

In January 1997 a noontime Bible Study was started with Sisters Hazel Davis and Othie Washington as
teachers.  In April of that same year the Inspirational Choir was organized under the direction of
Brother Phillip Marshall.

The 1997 Women’s Day Committee with Sister Dorletha Marshall as Chairperson, vowed to re-
upholster the pews throughout the sanctuary.  With the prayers and pledges of the Mount Olive
membership, the pews were finished and dedicated to Christ Jesus in Mount Olive’s 60th Anniversary
Service on May 31, 1998.  

In May 1998 the Mount Olive Youth Department was formed with supervisors Sisters Dorothy Davis,
Valerie Mijares, Brenda Moore, Dorothy Moore,
Jimmy Young and Brother Phillip Marshall.  In January 1998 Sister Rene’ Williams was elected

On November 29, 1998 Reverend Lowell D. Ford resigned as Pastor of Mount Olive. Reverend Westley
Marshall was chosen as the minister-in-charge.

In 1999 the property located at 4316 South Compton Avenue became available; the church was
successful in purchasing this property and a building fund was re-established at the Homecoming/State’s
Convention Service to raise monies.

In 1999-2000 the Pulpit Search Committee was formed to embark on the difficult task of searching for a
shepherd to bring to the body of Christ.  

After much prayer and supplication, the Pulpit Search Committee presented the congregation with the
names of the candidates for Pastor and on December 8, 2000 Reverend R. Stanley Haywood was
elected, commencing his duties as Pastor January 2001.  

2001 brought new ideals, changes, and restoration: such as the New Members Class, the Nursery and
Bible Study Teacher.

In March 2003 Brothers Gerald Brown and Cleveland Jackson were ordained as Deacons; and as the
Holy Spirit took us to another level,
Deacon Lee Roy Goodman, another of Mount Olive’s native son, announced his calling to the ministry
and was licensed to preach the Gospel.  We were also blessed with a new van to transport the saints to
and from the House of God.

In July 2003 Reverend Haywood resigned as Pastor of Mount Olive in order for the Holy Spirit to take
him to new heights in his ministry. Once again God’s faithful servant, Reverend Marshall became
Interim Pastor.  

On Sunday, November 19, 2006 Sister Dorothy Moore resigned as Church Clerk. Soon thereafter, Sister
Gloria Nicholson was appointed Church Clerk and
Sister Delenia Garcia was appointed Assistant Church Clerk.  

In November 2004, the congregation requested that a Pulpit Search Committee be formed, once again, to
search for the man God chose to lead our church.  With the selections presented to us, Reverend Lester
M. Heath was selected Pastor of Mount Olive Missionary Baptist Church and on January 1, 2006
Reverend Heath’s pastorship began.

After several years and countless fund-raisers, the fellowship hall was completed and on February 22,
2009 in a special service; the fellowship hall was dedicated in honor of our faithful member the late
Deacon Daniel Moss.

December 2012 Sister Othie Washington resigned as Sunday school Superintendent after serving for 45
plus years; in January 2013 Sister Sherry Bates was appointed to take the reins.

The Mount Olive Missionary Baptist Church family is blessed:  
Reverend Lester M. Heath, Pastor, the Deacon’s Ministry, the Trustee Ministry, the Mothers,
Ministers’ Wives and Deaconess Ministry, Sunday school Ministry, the Matrons Ministry, the
Vacation Bible School Ministry, the Susie Cook Bible Study, the Noontime Bible Study, the Mount
Olive Mass Choir, the Male Chorus, the Inspirational Choir, Senior Ushers’ Ministry, Junior Ushers’
Ministry, the Nurse’s Aide Ministry, the Transportation Ministry, the Brotherhood Ministry and a
congregation of baptized believers praise and worship together to the honor and glory of our Lord and
Savior Jesus Christ.  And God continues to give the increase!
For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.
Matthew 18:20
©2015 Mount Olive Missionary Baptist. All Rights Reserved.

Proverbs 3:6
History of the Mount Olive Missionary Baptist Church