Desiring a place to worship and hold prayer meetings, around 140 years ago, a group of Baptist Christians migrated to the areas of East Lockland, Woodlawn, and Wyoming, Ohio. They started worship services in their homes. Then one evening at Sister Rebecca Mangrum’s home, living on the banks of the old East Lockland canal, it was decided to rent a building for Sunday services. Sister Savannah noticed a small building across the street from her home and decided to rent it for their services. Thus was the beginning….
Mt. Zion Baptist Church was organized by a small group of Christians under the leadership of Reverend Wallace Shelton. The church was named the Second Baptist Church of Lockland.
The first location of the church was in Wyoming, Ohio in a one-room dwelling on Mulberry Street. The first pastor called was Reverend Newsome. Under his leadership, a weather-board church was built in Lockland, Ohio. The name was changed from Second Baptist to Mt. Zion Baptist Church.
Rev. Birch was called to pastor the church, serving for two years.
Reverends Moore and Charles Johnson served concurrently as pastor.
Rev. J.G. Orr was called to pastor Mt. Zion, serving the church for 13 years.
Rev. Fisher served as pastor briefly, for 1 month.
Rev. Bellamy served as pastor briefly, until the call of Rev. D.C. Ross.
Rev. D.C. Ross became the pastor, serving the next 19 years. Under his leadership, the weatherboard structure in Lockland was restructured into a brick building at a cost of $50,000, and the membership increased to 400.
Rev. Sanders was appointed by Rev. Ross as church pastor. Under his leadership, the Gospel Choir was organized.
Rev. Mitchell C. Coleman was called to Mt. Zion and served for 25 years. Under his leadership, the church continued to grow spiritually and numerically. In 1938 the church was remodeled, adding an annex due to a membership increase of approximately 1000 members. The mortgage burning services were held on November 3, 1943. During his pastorate, special programs and groups were established, including Early Christmas, Easter, Family Communion, Women’s and Men’s Days, and the Ministers’ and Deacons’ Wives Club.
Rev. Otis Moss, Jr. became pastor. During his pastorate, the Allegro Choir, MIRS Club, Usherettes, and the Mt. Zion Federal Credit Union were established. In 1966, the Sharon JoAnn Moss Scholarship Fund was started in memory of the late Sharon JoAnn Moss. The church membership continued to increase, and the second mortgage burning took place in 1972. Rev. Moss envisioned the future need for a larger edifice and led Mt. Zion in the land purchase of the present church site. Under his pastorate, Mt. Zion experienced a spiritual and social awareness revival that spread throughout local and surrounding communities. The church became the local “Hub” of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC).
Rev. Donald Thompson was called as pastor. Under his leadership, our current edifice was built. On Sunday, July 20, 1980, the “Great Walk” from the church in Lockland to the new edifice in Woodlawn, OH took place.
Rev. Albert Lampkin served as Interim Pastor.
Rev. Eddie Martin served as Presiding Pastor until the calling of the next pastor.
Rev. Henry Wise Jones was called to pastor Mt. Zion. Under his leadership, the mortgage was liquidated through the “Debt Free 94” campaign. The mortgage was burned on September 24, 1994. During his tenure, the 100 Voices Women’s Day Choir, Senior Citizens’ Group, and Girl Scout Troop were established. The need for a Youth Ministry was emphasized.
Rev. Eddie Martin served as Interim Pastor until the search for a new pastor was completed.
Rev. DeQuincy M. Hentz was called to pastor Mt. Zion. He embraced the theme, “A New Beginning in a New Millennium.” Mt. Zion grew both spiritually and numerically under his pastorate. Under his leadership, a number of new ministries were formed: KNOWJ, the Young Adults’ Ministry, Men’s Ministry, and Children’s Church, to name a few. Rev. DeQuincy Hentz – Under his pastorate the membership increased to over 1,100 members. He also ordained 7 new deacons and 2 new Associate Ministers. Rev. Hentz increased the ministries within Mt. Zion to over 50. His ministerial teaching increased weekly which enabled the church to expend Bible Studies to include Wednesday Noonday and Saturday Bible Classes, as well as an additional Sunday Morning Worship Service. Under Rev. Hentz, a Breakfast Ministry was started to feed early morning worshippers. He started the first Mt. Zion Christmas Gala, talent show, and Mt. Zion At the Movies Night. The Mt. Zion Bus Ministry was increased in staff and services to accommodate KNOWJ (Kids Night out with Jesus) and the adults attending Wednesday evening Bible Study. In 2005, Pastor Hentz’s vision for the future of Mt. Zion included “Vision 2010”, which included church building expansion, ministry outreach and church growth.
Rev. Eddie Martin served as the Presiding Minister.
Rev. Dr. Dennis E. Norris was called to serve as Interim Pastor. He led the membership in embracing the reconciliation and healing process, preparing Mt. Zion for the call of a new pastor.
On February 27, 2008, Rev. Dr. T. Scott Swan, I. was called to pastor Mt. Zion. He came with 27 years of ministerial experience, including 12 years as Pastor and 8 years of Pastoral Care-Giving. His ministerial focus is toward PTL – Preaching, Teaching, and Loving the people. Once again, God has smiled on Mt. Zion by gifting it with an anointed leadership with a vision and focus that encourages us to continue Building Relationships and with more focus on Building Expansion-ships. More specifically, Pastor Swan has led the Church in a renewed effort and emphasis on The Great Commission and ‘Saving Souls’. Since his arrival the Church has also shifted focus and moving from being ‘a church’ toward being ‘The Church’ on This Mountain! A high place in the midst of a low place…