The Mount Calvary Baptist Church located in Ivy, Va. organized in 1869. Through the years there have been many occasions celebrate. God has continues to showering his blessings on us and keep us in his Grace.
Ivy was once a predominately black community and upon obtaining freedom, the blacks were given land in Ivy, as well as mules, one (1) milk cow, two (2) hogs and ten (10) chickens.
The blacks were once allied closely with the white Episcopal Church in Ivy, where they were forced to sit in the basement during services. Dissatisfied with this segregation they built their own church.
The land 1 1/8 acres given to them by a member of the congregation, Bro. William Kenney and his wife Willie Ann, who was in turn given the land by his former master. Bro. Kenny designed the church and acted as supervisor to the congregation who actually built the church. The trustees Bros. Edward Keys, Nelson Kelly, James Champ and the pastor signed the transaction for ten dollars ($10.00) according to the Deed Book 102 – December 1, 1894.
Our Church has been nationally recognized, for the hand on the steeple and carved facings that adorned the steeple frame. After years of wear by ice, snow and rain, the former hand was destroyed. A new one was carved and given to the church by Mrs. Alice Ivory in 1985. The faces probably refer to Christianity rather than slavery, as sometimes thought. The original hand and faces can be found on display in our fellowship hall.
The house and lot next door to the church owned by Bro. Robert Bell was purchased May 13, 1953 for $1,000.00. The house was torn down for parking space. The trustees who signed were Bros. Robert Bell, Alexander Waller and Whitney Smith (Deed book 305-260).
In 1988, Bro. Henry Hughes gave land for expanding the parking area and a cemetery (Deed Book 1340-012). The Church was affiliated with the Piedmont District Association in 1890.
There is no history of the early pastors who served Mt. Calvary, but we do know that Rev. Timothy Woodfolk was first. Rev. Dave Woodfolk was second and third was Rev. A. L. Goodall, who served from 1920-1924. Rev. Henry Horn pastored from 1925-1929 and was assisted by Rev. Crocket, while he was a student at Lynchburg Seminary.
Rev. S.C. Abrams served from 1929-1960. Rev. Abrams was a renowned teacher and scholar. While he was here the choir stand was moved from the side of the building to the rear of the church and a baptism pool was installed. Rev. Abrams retired after 31 years of dedicated service.
Rev. W. T. Jenkins came to us in 1961 and served until 1973. While Rev. Jenkins was here, a kitchen, restroom facilities, pastor’s study, air condition, new pews and pulpit furniture were installed. He was a pastor known for many talents.
Rev. R. L. Brown came to us August 1, 1974 and served until March 31, 2002. Rev. Brown organized a weekly Bible Class and Prayer Service, a well was drilled, the Pastor’s study completed, as well as the parking area and cemetery, a fire proof file cabinet installed, pews covered, organ and piano purchased, as well as a memorial plaque, sound system and telephone. He recognized the “Mother” of the church. Rev. Brown also served as one of the musicians.
Dr. Tracie A. Daniels came to us in November 16, 2003 and served until March 31, 2015. A church constitution has been developed and adopted. The church financial and cemetery records computerized. Church service expanded to every Sunday. New Men’s Chorus and Voices of Praise choirs were established. Our outreach ministries grew to include: Advancing Native Missions, The Blue Ridge Food Bank, Support of local Soup kitchen, Virginia’s Adopt- A-Highway Road Side cleanup and others.
All personal and individual gifts that Mt. Calvary received down through the years have been greatly appreciated with a lasting memory.
Let us not forget those patriarchs who fell on their knees upon entering the sanctuary and gave God the praise and glory asking Him to make them worthy to be there.
Let us not forget those who so politely corrected our children in a nice way to make sure they paid attention and showed respect in service.
Some history of Mt. Calvary still lives on in our memory. We have a wonderful new building – the most important thing for a church is its people’s love for God.