Varying accounts reflect that Macedonia Missionary Baptist Church was formally organized as a church of the Lord Jesus Christ on July 5, 1928, under the leadership of Reverend Forest Few. Reverend Wagstad served as moderator of the organizing council, and Sis. M. Few was the recording secretary during the deliberations. As founding pillars of Macedonia, these two individuals’ roles were pivotal in laying the foundation and helping the later development of what we know now as Macedonia. Located in the “Hog Bottom” area of Dayton (near where Dunbar High presently sits on Richley Avenue), the church began on its mission to provide salvation and transformation to any who sought and needed it. Amidst a major depression in the American economy, Macedonia offered hope and help to a hurting community through creative worship and life-changing ministries to encourage families and people in need. It wasn’t long thereafter the church was constrained to relocate and found sanctuary in the Norwood Street area of the city in the vicinity of the Linden Recreational Center. Speculation is that the first properties were owned by Reverend Few and that at some point he kindly transferred the deeds of trust to the church.
As the ministry of Macedonia began to distinguish itself, Reverend Few graciously (and with the congregation’s assent) conferred leadership to Reverend John Wright as its next leader. The growing congregation soon purchased a lot for $100 at 262 Hanover Street, and the membership actually hand-constructed their first church facility to house worship and the study of the Word of God. Today this property (located in the western part of the city), is affectionately referred to as “Old Macedonia” in the area known (then) as Crown Point. Today the area is called Jefferson Township.
Thirteen years into her existence, Macedonia experienced a brief merger with the Salem Missionary Baptist Church of the city, but that relationship would only last for almost a year. Reverend Wright and Reverend Moragne (Salem’s pastor at that time) prayerfully attempted to combine the ministries during the economic fallout from the depression (under the Macedonia banner), but for varying reasons were unfortunately unsuccessful to congenially sustain the relationship. Salem was later re-established and continued to function under Reverend Moragne’s leadership until his death in 1947.
Like so many others during that time, the fledgling church struggled for years to remain afloat; but equally remained patient until God extended His amazing grace to the ministry between 1950 and 1961. From all over the city, people started coming and expressing a desire to become a part of the Macedonia experience. It wouldn’t be long before more space was needed to accommodate the growing host of people who would attend weekly. In 1961, the current property at 27 North Gettysburg Avenue was procured for a mere $80,000. On the second Sunday, February 11, 1962, a motorcade of over three hundred people left 262 Hanover Street and proceeded to the new church at 27 North Gettysburg Avenue. Some people called this a move to the “downtown” location even though the church was not located in downtown Dayton. This was a big day in the history of Macedonia Missionary Baptist Church. Ten years after the building was purchased, the mortgage was burned.
What followed was an interesting season of rebuilding and relaunching. People were led by the Holy Spirit from all over the Dayton metropolitan area to Macedonia. God graced the church with exponential growth. It wasn’t long before a larger building was needed to accommodate the swelling numbers. Key to this season of growth was the memorable leadership of Reverend Marcus T. Clark, a previous deacon of the church, who heard God’s call to preach. Brother Clark surrendered to the ministry in July 1949, and nearly a year later, he became the pastor of Macedonia. At that time, there were only seven members: Sister M.L. Clark, Deacon and Sister G. Cook, Deacon J. Bryant, Deacon Masters, Sister Fannie Hardwick, and Sister Moragne.