Mt. Moriah celebrates 195th homecoming

Published 4:13 pm Friday, October 6, 2023

By Mary Alice Beatty Carmichael

Mt. Moriah Fellowship Church invites the community to join them at 11 a.m. on Sunday, Oct. 8, for the Annual Homecoming and Memorial Service, the only scheduled service of the year.

It has been 195 years since the little “church that would not die” was founded. Settled on the line of Wilcox and Butler counties, the church is also in two townships, two sections and four different sections of land. When the preacher preaches at the front of the church in Wilcox County, he or she can be heard clear into Butler County, the next county, only two or three feet away.  

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During the time that John Quincy Adams served as the sixth President of the United States, in the fairly recently formed state of Alabama, a small group of seven land-owning men, four of their wives, and one slave, all faith filled Christians of the Baptist persuasion, joined together to form the church that would become Mt. Moriah Fellowship Church  on May 3, 1828. It was in an area called Mt. Moriah, and they named the new church “Fellowship”. They had seen a deep need for a place of religious worship, discipline, structure and fellowship. 

At least two of the men, their wives and the slave had “planted ” other churches in Wilcox and Butler Counties and perhaps in the other nearby five counties that were within riding distance.  They drew up twelve articles of Faith and twelve Rules of Decorm [sic]. 

Besides articles of faith similar to those of todays’ churches, they promised each other to “renounce the vain and sinful customs and habits of the world and live soberly righteously and Godly” lives. On May 31 they opened a door for the reception of members and received by experience Sister Phoebe A. Col, a woman [who was] the property of Garland Burt and the first new member of the church.

The little church has had no pastor for the last 82 years, when Rev. William H. Kamplain preached his last sermon there. Nor has it had a single enrolled living member for 52 years, when the last enrolled member, Rose Fitzgerald Luckie (Mrs. Claude Luckie) died in 1971.

Following the service will be a “dinner on the grounds.”  Meat will be provided and guests are asked to bring a side dish or dessert with serving pieces clearly identified with their name.  Please RSVP to James Carmichael at “jamescar2007@gmail.com.

The Moderator for this service is Daniel Troy Carmichael 1st. The speaker is Rev. Madison Roberts, Pastor of the Mt. Brook Presbyterian Church in Birmingham. 

For this Mt. Moriah Homecoming, “The Yeldell Yellers,” a group of gifted cousins will provide the music.

Ushers for this Homecoming service will be brothers, Robert Lewis “Tripp” Robinson III and Jackson Monroe Robinson.

At the service, complete, original copies of the obituaries of these very impressive lives will be available at the church: Dr. John Leslie Carmichael of Birmingham, Erskine Grier “Don” Donald, III of Pine Apple, Hugh Joseph Dudley of Huntsville, Frances Folmar Miller of Titus and Melvyn Douglas Stone of Greenville.