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~Burnetts Chapel Church History~

Burnetts Chapel dates back to the year 1912 at which time Reverend Albert Passmore Burnett began
preaching in an old house on the Owen Holiday Place. Reverend Burnett was led by the spirt to construct
a church building and met with Manley White, Cyrus Bowden, Alson White, and a few others to share his
vision. Reverend Burnett was designated to speak with Mr. Wesley Whitehead about purchasing land for
a church building. Mr. Whitehead generously donated land for the church and cemetery. During
construction of the church, services were held in a brush arbor.
Mr. Finley White was only 8 years old when construction began and was the youngest worker on site. He
joined Burnetts Chapel at age 13 and was a faithful member for a number of years.
The community pitched in to help with the construction of the church which was completed in 1913 and
named Burnetts Chapel.
Mr. Sam Dark was the first Deacon of Burnetts Chapel. He was 13 years old when the first revival was
During this era there were no schools in the community for the African American children. Our
forefathers saw the need to educate their children and decided that the newly constructed Burnetts
Chapel Church building would also serve as a school. Many of our church members attended this school
and are shown in a class picture now displayed in the Fellowship Hall. Ms. Agness Whitted was the first
teacher. Others that taught the school were Ms. Lula Gilliam, Ms. Catheryn Whitmore and Ms. Lucille
Reverend Albert Passmore Burnett was one of the first African American Teachers at Sylvan Elementary
School and taught basket making during the 1914-1915 school year.
Services were held in the original frame building for 44 years. In addition to Reverend Albert Passmore
Burnett, Reverends C.J. Alston, C.T. Harvey, W.A. Crumpton, A.A. Hazel, G.W. Farrar and James H.
Hooker led the congregation in this church building.
With Gods blessings and increasing membership, there was a need for a larger sanctuary. Again, Mr.
Whitehead was contacted and donated more land to build a new church. Under the leadership of
Reverend James Hooker and Building Fund co-chairs Mr. Thomas White and Deacon Roy Siler, Jr., a new
church building was erected in 1956. A fellowship hall and additional Sunday School rooms were
subsequently constructed.
Burnett Chapels Founding pastor, Reverend Albert Passmore Burnett, was unable to attend the newly
constructed church due to illness. However his prayers and support of the church continued until his death
on April 29, 1957. His home going service first held in the new church.
Reverend James H. Hooker, Richard Haith, Daniel Bethea, Anthony Carr, Michael Allen, Cleno Harris
and Stanley V. Burette, all served in the newly constructed church.
Reverend Hooker served as pastor of Burnetts Chapel for a glorious 38 years. During his tenure,
church services were extended to two Sundays per month in celebration of Gods continued blessings.

Additional land extending to Bethel-South Fork road was donated to the church by the Whitehead family
in 1989. A monument was erected in November of that year in memoriam of Wesley, Earnest and Talton
Whitehead for their generous donations.
The original frame church was removed and a memorial monument was placed at the site. The church
bell from the original church building has been restored and is currently located between the sanctuary
and the Fellowship Hall.
Under the leadership of Reverend Stanley V. Burnette and a cooperative effort from the congregation,
Gods blessing continued with the erection of a new sanctuary which was dedicated in 2001. During
Reverend Stanley V. Burnettes 19 years as pastor, other milestones were achieved to include a paved
parking lot and eventually paving of Burnetts Chapel Church Road. We also purchased land adjoining
the church and added a shelter for outside activities.
Burnetts Chapel was originally affiliated with the Lincoln Conference and remained with this
organization until the Christian Churches merged with the United Church of Christ. Burnetts Chapel
was affiliated with the United Church of Christ until 2009.
On July 28, 2012, Reverend Michael Anthony Alston, answered the call to become the pastor of the
Burnetts Chapel Christian Church, continuing to build upon the blueprint left behind by the late
Reverend Albert Passmore Burnett.
Reverend Alston is an energetic preacher, teacher and outreach clergyman. God has given him a vision to
fulfill Gods purpose in the Body of Christ. Jeremiah 3:15 states, And I will give you pastors according
to mine heart, which shall feed you with knowledge and understanding.
He is devoted to the work of erecting a fervent and pulsating congregation that epitomizes the
righteousness and the adoration of God in worship, in praise, and to all whom we serve through numerous
ministries. Reverend Alston believes and teaches that the only way the church can be a beacon of light in
this Dark Age is by full obedience to the gospel of Jesus the Christ.
Under the leadership of Reverend Alston, we perceive an authoritative shift of the Holy Spirit. New
members have joined the sheepfold, present members are being restored, former members are being
reinstated, and most importantly lives are being transformed and souls are being saved by the expounded
word of God.