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Honoring The 70Th Anniversary Of Second Baptist Church, Las Vegas, Nevada

Rep. Shelley Berkley

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Mr. Speaker, I rise today to recognize and celebrate the 70th anniversary of Second Baptist Church in Las Vegas, Nevada.

On February 22, 1942, the Second Baptist Church was founded by Verinette Anderson, Willie Harris, F.W. Wilson, Reverend and Sister B.T. Mayfield, Sisters Lola Hayes and Helen Polk and the Robinson Family. The group met at the home of Mr. and Mrs. Robinson to organize the church, with Reverend Mayfield as the first pastor. Members contributed their own money to purchase a tent for shelter on a parcel of land where the old sanctuary presently stands and where they conducted services for approximately nine months. Under Reverend Mayfield's guidance, the membership grew to more than 300 people and the congregation had the ability to build a church edifice.

Over the past 70 years, membership at Second Baptist Church has increased significantly and continues to grow as they pride themselves on progress, leadership, faith, and love. In 1991, Reverend Jesse L. Jackson named them the ``Miracle on Madison Avenue'' to honor their service and devotion to Christian values.

In addition to the pastors of Second Baptist Church, there are deacons and deaconesses who help with the preparation of candidates for baptism and also look after the church's widows and orphans. They strive to enhance the spiritual life of the church by visiting the sick and shut-in, offering them prayer, guidance, and financial aid upon request. The deacons and deaconesses of Second Baptist Church strengthen the community by working faithfully together with church members, ministries, and associate ministers.

Ministries also are an invaluable part of Second Baptist Church. They fulfill a wide range of duties including overseeing the Christian education programs, music selection, and greeting guests. These congregants have a love for people, a heart to serve others, and a willingness to be faithful. They serve in ministries for men, youth, women and mothers to ensure that every individual has a place and feels at home.

In 2009, during the 67th Church Anniversary Celebration, Reverend D. Edward Chaney was installed as the seventh pastor of Second Baptist Church. Reverend Chaney came to the church with a wealth of biblical knowledge, high energy, extraordinary vision, and strong outreach. With his guidance and direction, Second Baptist continues to reach for higher ground in its ministry and service to others.

Second Baptist is a beacon of light for its members and the community as a whole. They have flourished as a ministry by leading, teaching, and praying, and honoring the individuals who built the foundation of their church.

As the Representative for Nevada's First Congressional District, I proudly recognize Second Baptist Church for 70 years of dedicated service to the community of Las Vegas and I ask my colleagues to join me in celebrating Second Baptist Church's 70th anniversary.