New Hope Baptist Church has long stood for the truth. In fact, that is how the church began. While few records from the church’s early days survive, the few that do tell a fascinating tale of conflict, resolve, and faith.
In the mid-19th century, a small church existed in rural Lawrence County, Missouri named Rock Prairie Church. For many years it adhered to the doctrines set forth by the Old Regular Baptists. However, that changed in the 1850s. During that time, a new set of doctrines began to infiltrate the area. Among other things, these new doctrines denied the future resurrection from the dead. Many in the small congregation refused to go along with the new teachings, and on June 8, 1850, eleven of the twenty-three members made their disagreement known at a church conference.
Unfortunately, they were unsuccessful in persuading their fellow church members to abandon the heretical teachings, and so decided to part ways. This little group who stood for the truth soon banded together under the title of Fellowship Church. Little else is known about the history of the church until the later part of the 19th century when it had changed its name to New Hope Missionary Baptist Church. In 1883, New Hope officially organized, applied for, and was granted membership in the Missouri Baptist Convention, then under the name, New Hope Baptist Church. Since that time, the church has seen many ups and downs, and through it all God has proven Himself faithful.
Currently, the church runs between 20 and 30 on Sunday morning with people from all age groups represented. There is a strong family atmosphere among the people, and folks genuinely care for one another. It is the church’s desire to see many people come into the Kingdom of God and to hear the Lord say, “Well done, good and faithful servant.”