Church History

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After five years of successful ministry at a local congregation the Holy Spirit spoke to Pastor Billy Baskin with confirmation by his wife, Mrs. Catherine P. Baskin, that it was indeed time to relocate. A small group of dedicated saints expressed their desire for the freedom to serve God in another dimension. A place was sought to worship God and for the study of His Word. The Holy Spirit led us to this present sight where the original building was expanded to accommodate the rapid growth.

 

During the early months of its existence, many spiritual leaders, pastors and churches came to the aid of this struggling church. Bible Baptist, its membership, and Pastor Cleo Albury, permitted New Way to hold its first Baptism at their church. Reverend Joe Coates, pastor of Glendale Baptist Church was a catalyst in helping achieve church recognition and delivered the “Recognition Sermon” on January 11, 1976 at Bible Baptist Church. The friend who stood by Pastor Baskin during those first difficult months and years was Reverend Joe Johnson now Pastor of Ebenezer Baptist Church of Hallandale. There were many others, including Reverend James Hendon, former Pastor of Mount Tabor and Reverend Major Green. All of them provided spiritual support and advice to our Pastor and congregation.

 

Following the dictates of the Holy Spirit and Holy Scriptures, our Pastor realized the need for additional Deacons to assist in the work of our new church, so in October 1976, these five men were ordained as Deacons: James Boykins, Napolean Montgomery (deceased), Frank Hankerson, James Green and Arnold Crawford (both deceased), joining Deacons: Jimmie Edwards and Horace McMillian (deceased) to form the Deacons’ staff of New Way Fellowship Baptist Church.

 

The infancy of the church was not without its problems. Thieves broke into the church and took the organ and chairs. But, the congregation never missed a service. The words of Isaiah 59:19 come to mind: “When the enemy shall come in like a flood, the spirit of the Lord shall lift up a standard against him.” Under the attack of willful and wanton vandalism, the church still grew spiritually and physically. God added to the church as needed.

 

Ministry groups were organized and added to the church under capable and dynamic leadership. Men and women were involved in domestic and foreign outreach ministry throughout Dade County, the Caribbean Islands and the Island of Bermuda. A bus ministry was added to the church in November 1976. The music ministry was expanded with the addition of a young adult and men’s choirs.

Under the leadership of Pastor Baskin, New Way’s reputation as a Bible teaching church quickly spread throughout the community, attracting sinners from all over Dade County as well as Christians who were interested in personal spiritual growth and a new way of life.

 

Within three years, there was a need to ordain four more deacons: Earl Lumpkin, Ralph Person, Leroy Rahmings and Wesley Davis (deceased). Wesley Davis was later called into the preaching ministry. The following year the property both north and south of the Church was purchased. Nowhere was the leadership of Pastor Baskin more evident than in the swelling membership of the church. During a period when most churches were complaining of losing support and dwindling membership, New Way was bursting at the seams. At the end of the fiscal year 1980, the membership had grown from 148 to 1026. It was in this same year that two more Deacons were added: Willie Kelly (deceased) was selected to replace Brother Wesley, who joined the staff.

During the decade of the 80’s New Way became known as a place of refuge for the wounded and hurting and those in need of God’s unending love. It was during New Way’s tremendous growth experience that Pastor Baskin first shared with the congregation his vision of a new edifice with a sanctuary large enough to accommodate our growing needs; with sufficient classroom space. It was in 1980 that this dream became a realistic possibility with the approval of a $500,000 bond program financed through the Southern Baptist Convention. The church membership endorsed the bonding program and plans were directed towards the new building.

A groundbreaking ceremony was held on the third Sunday of November 1980 for the new building. The congregation unanimously embarked upon a million-dollar building program. On Mother’s Day, May 13, 1984, the congregation dedicated the new building to the glory of God.

 

“All things are possible to them that believeth, (Mark 9:23)”. New Way dared to believe God’s Word. Having started out in faith and trusting and God, the congregation believed God for nothing short of a complete victory. God increased New Way’s membership and a pledge from $22,320 to over $1,200,000. Praise God!!!

 

Hundreds of new converts came to know and accepted Jesus Christ as their personal Lord and Savior. The rich spiritual soil of New Way gave birth to many ministerial sons and daughters: Wendell A. Baskin & Cynthia Baskin, James Richardson, Wesley Davis (deceased), David Garrett, J.C. Saddler, Keith Hankerson, Bobby Johnson, Vincent Jones, Lee Johnson, Catherine P. Baskin, Steven Caldwell, Troy Pickens, Cecil & Sherry Moses, Henry Todd, Dennis & Mary Thompson, Jerome & Brenda Cox, Donnell Young, Dean Daley, Densil & Maria Findlater, Jermaine Johnson, Betty Gabriel, Thomas & Christine Maxwell, Thomas Eutsay, Don Ololade, Stern Ferguson, David Ramjohn, Helen Moten Raymond Carvil, Alfonso Livingston, Karen Leonard, Wes Hall, Eddie Sweet, Ron D’oyley and Kandy McBayne . Many couples have united and found the satisfaction of marriage at New Way. The teachings of the Bible are impacting our lives and motivating us to live for Christ.

 

The decade of the 90’s more ministries were added, to meet the growing needs of the multi-culture fellowship, Children’s Church, Hospitality, Partners Ministry, Deacons’ Wives, Jail Ministry, Yoke Fellows, Minister’s Wives, Divorce Recovery, Outreach, Media and Straight Way Substance Abuse Ministries to name a few, our ministries grew to a total of 46.

 

In 1995, New Way Fellowship accepted Psalm 92:1 as our theme; “It is good to give thanks to the Lord, and to sing praises to Thy name, O Most High; to declare Thy loving kindness in the morning and Thy faithfulness by night.” We have learned that praise doesn’t automatically come just to satisfy our need for spiritual feeling. It comes as an overflow of our awareness of God and His presence. Yes, we became New Way Fellowship Praise and Worship Center. We allowed the Holy Spirit to direct our worship services leading us into a deeper revelation of a worshipful experience.

 

When the body of Christ dwells with God, He never loses sight of His leaders or His members who love Him. God tells us in 1 Peter 4:10 that we are to “employ (our gifts) in serving one another, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God.” Ephesians 4:11 say, “And He gave some as apostles; and some prophets; and some evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers. Dr. Billy Baskin and Dr. Catherine Baskin accepted their new promotion to the call of Apostleship. A special anointed ordination service confirming their Apostleship was conducted by Archbishop Benson Idahosa (now deceased). God’s anointed power has been bestowed on our leaders and in each service the congregation witnessed and participated in the manifestations of His power through miracles of healing and deliverance.

 

Our church staff grew to 14 full-time employees, including Apostle Billy Baskin, Apostle Catherine Baskin, Reverend Shelly Tunson, Reverend Vincent Jones, Reverend Carroll Storr, Minister Steven Caldwell, Juanita Nixon, Carolyn Banks, Karla Lyons, Chantal Cayo, Tresa Watts, Vitz Harrel Tom Cross, Deacon Cleo Dennison, two part-time employees Agnes McCoy and Thelma Mills.

God continued to bless New Way with over 4,000 members, 50 ministries, numerous servants who willingly served God. New Way produced “A Fresh Encounter”, an evangelical television broadcast that aired twice a week with a corresponding telephone prayer line that reached souls all across the nations. As New Way continued it’s exponential growth the Promise Generation Youth Ministry, under the leadership of Minister Steven Caldwell, touched the lives of hundreds of youth throughout Dade and Broward Counties.

Ministry at New Way developed to include opportunities for women to grow spiritually as well as men under the organizational leadership of Bishop Catherine P. Baskin, The Women’s Growth Institute was birthed in 1987 with two conferences a year, Day Extraordinaire and the Women’s Fall Conference. Bible study classes for women included Digging Deeper, Morning Coffee and How To Pray. The ninth “Healing What Hurts” W.G.I. Conference along with the 3rd Annual “Stepping With Jesus Higher” teens conference ministered to the women and teenagers from all walks of life. Lives were changed, souls were saved, relationships were restored. God truly manifested in our midst thru the power of the Holy Spirit under the leadership of Bishop Catherine P. Baskin.

The School of the Prophets and the Spiritual Warfare Ministry was added in fulfillment of the Word of God. These classes brought freedom, help and healing to many.

 

Other life changing encounters for 1995 included: Luis Palau Crusade, Youth Quake, Holy Week Revival with neighboring churches, National Week of Prayer, Family Week Revival, Senior Saints Day, Single Focus Conference, Annual Men’s Conference lead by Apostle Gregory Thomas and Elder Trent Frank of New Orleans, the Annual Women’s Conference, Market Place Evangelism, Youth Explosion Revival, Windshield Canvassing for Salvation, Concert of Prayer, Church Picnic and many others!!!

New Way’s weekly ministry continues to prepare the Body of Christ for the challenges facing us in the 21st Century.

As we look back over the 30 years of ministry, we can truly say: “God is good because He has so graced us with His unmerited favor.

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