About West End
The history of West End Baptist Church began on December 12, 1892, when Robert and Mary Herbert sold a piece of land, forty feet by one hundred feet to West End Baptist Church Trustees Joshua Morris, Isaiah Dillard and John Seton for $75.00.
In 1901, the West End Baptist Church established services under the leadership of Pastor Linas. The fellowship began in the old Bates School located where the Beau Brummell building now stands. After the passing of Pastor Linas, Pastor Beverly Garner became his successor. Pastor Garner saw the need for a new sanctuary for his followers. The congregation began to build the new church at 2619 Shell Road. Unfortunately, Pastor Garner passed away before he could see his dream completed.
The new church sanctuary was completed in 1903 under the leadership of Pastor Bray. Succeeding Pastor Bray, Pastor Samuel Booth was selected and then Pastor Hall and Pastor Atkins succeeding Pastor Hall.
In 1965, Reverend Hallie Richardson, Sr. became West End’s new leader. He served faithfully until September 1990. Due to growth of the congregation, there was a need for an even larger sanctuary. A new sanctuary was built at 2413 Shell Road and the church was officially renamed West End Baptist Church of Hampton. Pastor Richardson led the congregation in the march to the new sanctuary on July 4th, 1982 where they enjoyed their first worship service.
Pastor Rufus Hill succeeded Pastor Richardson in September 1990, and he served until 1999. During this time, West End also saw its first woman, Edith Green, appointed to the Diaconate. Pastor Mark Benton, D.D. was elected pastor in April 2001 and was succeeded by Reverend James Gray in November 2003. Pastor Gray served until 2007 and was succeeded by Reverend Paul Sims. Reverend Sims had the historic original church bell restored and ceremoniously placed at the entrance of the church.
Elder Paul S. Thomas was elected as West End Baptist Church 12th Pastor in November 2013. He was installed on September 21, 2014 and bestowed the title of Bishop. Under the leadership of Bishop Thomas, the church had many renovations done which included redoing the foyer, painting the sanctuary and fellowship hall, new carpet, additional lighting, and new sound equipment. In November 2016, the church became incorporated and its name was changed to West End Baptist Church of Hampton (Incorporated). Under its new name, the church made its first real estate purchase, of 2501 Shell Road, in December of 2016. Improvements continue to happen by landscaping, lighting and adding name on the front of church.