Oldest Black church in Wichita Falls is still standing
WICHITA FALLS, Texas (KAUZ) - One of the oldest Black churches in Wichita Falls is in many ways the foundation for the Black community on the East Side of Wichita Falls. Mt. Pleasant Baptist Church was founded in 1891 and is over 130 years old.
The Black church was considered a safe place for Blacks years ago when many weren’t allowed to worship with whites. One former deacon said there’s no place like Mt. Pleasant.
“The love of the community,” said Andrew Roberts, former deacon of Mt. Pleasant. “They are one that has reached out to the community and has led the way within the community and you can always depend on Mt. Pleasant.”
In 1974, Robert Castle became Mt. Pleasant’s pastor and he continues to carry that torch to this day.
“The church is more than just an individual group of people. The church as I call it is a universal church in that it’s the church that Jesus said upon this rock I will build my church and not even the gates of hell should prevail against it,” said Robert Castle, pastor of Mt. Pleasant.
Roberts said the Black church is an informational hub for the Black community.
“A place that you can come that you can learn and that it was a form of community for what was going on in the city,” said Roberts.
Mt. Pleasant was bombed twice, and both times the church was rebuilt.
“We would send our youth on trips each summer and they would go on various and they would go to different places throughout the nations,” added Pastor Castle.
Pastor Castle believes his mission is to save lives.
“And then we had a food bank, where we would feed the hungry. There was a time that I can’t remember us having a city-wide food bank and we would have to do it from our churches,” explained Pastor Castle.
“Mt. Pleasant is more than just a build. Mt. Pleasant is a spiritual place,” said Roberts.
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