Our History

The History of Fellowship Missionary Baptist Church

Fellowship_Church_PicA group of 12 charter members met on February 28, 1932, in the home of W.B. Combest, for the purpose of forming the first missionary Baptist church in the Flint area.  Bro. A.K. Scott was elected to serve as the first Pastor in July 1934, until November 7, 1936.  Bro. Marvin Byrnes served as Pastor from January to October 1937.  The property on Pettibone was purchased on February 6, 1937, for the price of $250.  Bro. Alfred Thomas was elected Pastor in January 1939 until September 1942.  Bro. M.N. Gregson served as Pastor from November 1942 until August 1958.  The auditorium was built during this time.  From November 1958 until May 1976, Bro. V.E. Gibson served as Pastor.  During this time, an addition was constructed.  During times when the church was without a Pastor, Brethren Earl Kinney, J.D. Long, Walter Griffin, and M.F. Gean filled the pulpit.  Brethren Mark Lasley, Alan Henson, and Charles Saulsbury served as short-term Pastors from 1976 – 1981.  In September 1982, the church voted to merge with Eastside Unity Missionary Baptist Church.

The History of Eastside Missionary Baptist Church

Eastside_Church_PicOn September 7, 1958, Calvary Missionary Baptist Church and New Haven Missionary Baptist Church met to unite their congregations and chose the name “Eastside Unity Missionary Baptist Church.”  From September 14, 1958 thru January 3, 1976, Bro. M.N. Gregson served as Pastor.  During these years, the church met in a house in Burton.  In 1960, they built the basement on Hemphill St. and met there until the building was completed in 1963.  Willie Faye Smith served as Pastor from April 1976, to march 1978.  On June 7, 1978, Bro. Charles R. Curtman was called as Pastor.  Because of the need for more space, in July 1979, 12.5 acres of land was purchased for $112,500.  The merger of the Fellowship Missionary Baptist Church and Eastside Missionary Baptist Church was completed in October 1981 and the name “Eastside Unity” was retained even though they began to meet in the “Fellowship” building, due to advantages in space and facilities.

In July 1983, the congregation voted to change their name to

“Cornerstone Baptist Church”

Cornerstone:  A Church of New Beginnings

Under the leadership of Pastor Curtman, Phase I of our present building was constructed and dedicated in January 1987.  An addition was dedicated in January 1990.  Bro. Curtman served for 14 years before resigning in June 1992.  Bro. Roy L. McLaughlin was called as Pastor in July 1992.  In October 1998, an addition, including a gymnasium, kitchen, nurseries, and 10 classrooms, was dedicated.  Pastor McLaughlin served as Pastor until his passing in 2008.  In January of 2011, the church called Bro. Chris Yager as Pastor.  Cornerstone Baptist Church is about to celebrate Pastor Chris’ 2nd year as Pastor.  You can view his Bio HERE!

Praise ye the Lord.  Praise ye the name of the Lord; praise him, O ye servants of the Lord.  Ye that stand in the house of the Lord, in the courts of the house of our God, praise the Lord; for the Lord is good: sing praises unto His name; for it is pleasant.”  Psalm 135:1-3

 The history of Cornerstone Baptist Church is rich with heritage.  God has blessed this local church with over 75 years of gospel ministry in the Flint Area.  Many great sacrifices have been made throughout the past and many sacrifices will be required of those who desire to see this great work of God continue.  May the miracles continue here at Cornerstone Baptist Church!


  1. ron hallock says:

    Attn. Pastor Chris:

    As noted, my name is Ron Hallock. I am a retired Senior Vice President of GNC stores living in CA. My passion for many years has been the collection and display of WW2 memorablia to honor those who gave all for God and country.
    My purpose in reaching out ot you is to ask for your help – some tiem ago, i purchased from an antique shop, an 8×10 picture/portrait of two young men in what i believe are WW2 era Navy and Army uniforms. They look to be brothers.
    Recently, In cleaning the portrait for display in my home, i opened the back of the frame and found the following name and address listed:

    W.B. Combest
    1129 Lincoln (street?)
    Flint, Mi (no zip code as of course, Zips had not been ‘invented’ early in the last century)

    Also, on the back of the photo is a torn piece of wrapping paper with the word Flint,M

    AFter going on -line to perhaps learn more about the identites of these two veterans, i was pleased to see a referene to W B Combest as the very first entry i looked into, along with a history of your church. I wonder if it Could be possible that these two young men were congregants in your church during the war years …perhaps related to WB Combest.

    if i make a copy of the poto availabe to you, do you think you might ask some of your older congregants if they may know of or recognize these two veterans? i am intrigued about their identities and if it proves that they were a part of your church life, then perhaps they should be ‘brought home’.

    Please feel free to let me know if you would like to see a copy of the photo for some casual research on your end…many thanks…

    • Hi Ron, we’re sorry for the delay in responding. We hadn’t realized a few comments had stacked up on our website. Yes! We knew the Combest family. I’m sure if you could email a copy of the pictures, there are still a few members who would remember them. I specifically remember Gladys Combest – my dad and I used to visit her. Looking forward to hearing back! Pastor Jon


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