Some places are perfect spots to leave the kids at home and getaway for a while. However, if you visit Second Macedonia Baptist Church, you are going to want to take the young ones with you. In fact, you probably should bring the whole family because at this 88-year-old place of worship, there’s something for everyone.
Second Macedonia has proudly been serving the Logan community for a very long time.
“Our church is a shining light in the Logan community,” said Second Macedonia pastor the Rev. Harold R. Jolley. “We are 88-years-old and stand on the foundation of wonderful pastors and wonderful members that have a heart for community.”
Jolley said members of Second Macedonia have a lot of love to share and hands that are willing and ready to work to spread the Gospel by touching the lives of those in the community.
Jolley has pastored Second Macedonia for 7 ½ years and prior to his installation at Macedonia, he pastored 12 years at Riverview Missionary Baptist Church in Kingston, New York while earning a reputation as “a people’s pastor”
Like many areas of Philadelphia, Logan is changing. Second Macedonia is taking steps to address those changes.
“With the community changing, we have to reevaluate what we offer the community and we are assessing what the community really needs,” Jolley said. “One of the things that I believe is that the church can offer certain things that the community does not need so what we’re trying to do is to make sure that whatever services we are offering, will match the needs of the community.”
So how do they plan on going about this visionary effort?
“We are putting together a strategic plan to walk around the community and continue to have ongoing conversations with, not only the residents of the community but also the institutions that have been established there for quite some time,” Jolley said.
A part of this strategic plan is revisiting the instructions found in the Bible about how the church should engage in community outreach.
“There are certainly some things that the church should not be engaged in but there are other things that the church should be engaged in such as feeding the hungry, visiting the sick and making sure that people feel the love and that we are witnesses for Jesus Christ,” Jolley said.
Bryant Robinson has been a member of Second Macedonia for 19 years and said that at the time he joined, he and his wife was looking for a church when his brother-in-Law, suggested that he visit.
“We arrived at Second Macedonia and we believed we found a good church home,” Robinson said.
Robinson recalled that he and his wife were newly married at the time and wanted some instruction and guidance. He found the instruction and guidance he sought at Second Macedonia.
“The atmosphere was enlightening, the spirit was high, the pastor was very loving, and the church was full at the time,” he said. “There wasn’t an empty seat in the place. It seemed like it was the place to be.”
Robinson said both he and his wife felt that God had called them to make Second Macedonia their home. So, they did, and still do.
Carolyn Thompson has spent 18 years with Second Macedonia and, like the Robinsons, said it was the Holy Spirit that directed her steps.
“Once I went it was like a warm and homey feeling,” she said. “I loved the music, the preaching and I made some friends and so I am still there.”
Thompson describes the music at Second Macedonia as “energetic”.
“It touches your heart, it touches your mind, it makes you reflect on the Word,” she said.
And the preaching?
“Dynamic and energetic,” she said.
Thompson said Jolley is serious about The Word of God and people understanding The Word so that they can apply it to their lives.
“I think that’s the most important thing about him,” Thompson said. “He’s concerned about the people and he tries to interact with them as much as he can.”
As a family-oriented church, the youth are essential to its activities and much effort is made to ensure that they are an integral part of the church activities.
“We have so many different activities and functions so when we have things like game-night and pot-luck dinner night and stuff like that, and you really just have people having a good time, it’s nice to have that at church,” said Janelle Benson who has attended the church most of her life.
The Young People’s Ministry has an activity every month which include things like movie nights and a host of other activities to keep them engaged and active.
“Sometimes people get the vision of church that you’re going there, sitting around listening to somebody preach to you all the time but there’s so many other parts to it,” Benson said. “It’s fellowship and so many things that comes out of that. It’s a beautiful thing to be able to come to the church house and engage in those kinds of activities that are still fun but worshipping God at the same time.”
But you need not be a youth to have fun in the Lord at Second Macedonia. In fact, the church has a vibrant Men’s ministry, Women’s ministry and a Music and Arts Ministry among others.