The Saint Mark Apostolic Faith Church was organized in 1926 under the leadership of the late Bishop C.R. Whitley (Elder at that time), the late Bishop T.L. Alston (deacon at that time) and the late Mother E.J. Smith. Services were first held at Hood Chapel AME Church located on Rockingham. Because the building was not available for full time services, another building was sought. The church rented a building located on the located on the corner of Bainbridge Boulevard and Craig Street (now demolished) in the Berkley section of Norfolk, Virginia.
In 1937, the congregation purchased and moved to the Old Fellows Hall at it's present location on Walker Avenue. The church completed payments on the building in 1944 and renovated in 1951.
Our founder, Bishop C.R. Whitley passed in 1954. His son Elder Elisha Whitley, immediately filled the role of Pastor and continued church work until 1956. Elder Eugene Gay worked with the church . keeping the ministry going until a Pastor was appointed.
In 1958, the old edifice was torn down. Sunday school was held at Mother Susie Boyd's house. Church services were held at Moseley funeral home. A chairman of the Deacon board, headed the committee. Other members f the committee were the late Deacon John Garner, the late Mother Susie Boyd, Elder Eugene Gay, Sister Creola Hockaday, Sister Rebecca Williams, Sister Dorothy Bush, Sister Lessie Williams, and Sister Alice McDonald, secretary. After the building fund project had begun, Overseer George W. Parks was sent to us by request to serve as pastor. His desiring for greater progress, he pledged his support and encouraged the congregation to go forward in the meekness of the spirit as "One" working together for one cause.
The Groundbreaking ceremony for the new church building was held October 31, 1962. Bishop Marshall Sharp laid the foundation of the dining area which served as the church sanctuary during construction. Many obstacles hindered and prolonged completion of the Church; but through fasting and prayer and the services of Attornry Henry Howell, God gave us the victory. Four years later the current building was completed.
Many members helped in the purchase of the furnishings of the church. Sister Nora Parson, Sister Linda Sawyer and Mother Ida Mae Reid(deceased) purchased the church piano. Brother Clayton Parson purchased the leslie for the church piano. Minister Curtis Gay and Sister Linda Sawyer purchased the church organ. Sister Sylvania Holley (deceased), Sister Viola Corprew (deceased), and Sister Minnie Wardrick purchased the kitchen appliances (stove and refrigerator). Mother Susie Boyd and Sister Alice McDonald purchased the church pulpit and sanctuary. Sister Lucille Gay and Sister Nora Parson purchased the glass door.
The dedication service was held on April 17, 1966 with Bishop A.H. Urquhart officiating. After the new church was erected there was a desire of the congregation to change the name "Saint Mark" to New Saint Mark. By a unanimous vote, the name was legalized in April 1967.
In 1967 Elder Norman Peterson was appointed by Pastor Parks to serve as the assistant Pastor. He served in this office for three years.
During our Annual Homecoming celebration, August 11, 1974, a "Mortgage Burning Ceremony" was held with the late Bishop G.B. White officiating. With in a period of eight years, we were able to pay off the mortgage and purchase new pews, pianos, organ, pulpit, carpet, two P.A. systems, and kitchen cabinet appliances.
Bishop Parks resigned as Pastor of the church in 1981. In 1983, Elder Curtis Gay became Pastor and served until his illness shortly thereafter. After the death of Pastor Gay in 1984, his father, Elder Eugene Gay, continued the work of the ministry until a pastor was appointed.
In 1985, Elder Angelo Davis became Pastor of New Saint Mark. Under his leadership, the church underwent several major renovations., including the addition of a steeple and conference room. The church was bricked in during this time, also. Elder Davis served as Pastor until early 1995.
From 1995 to 1997, Elder Terry Brown, Sr. was name Pastor of the church. Under his leadership, the church has undergone many physical changes. In the spring of 1998, the rebuilt the pulpit and choir stand. This was completed in time for the National Youth Fellowship Convention held at church in June 1998. Early 1999 brought with it more renovations as the sanctuary floor was repaired and re-carpeted. Furthermore, the church converted to a conference room into a church office and the Pastor's office was moved beside the church office. The congregation purchased new office furniture for both offices and a computer printer for the church office. During the same year, New Saint Mark completed payments on the church van that was purchased in 1996. At the end of 1999, the ceiling in the sanctuary was redone and new light fixtures were put in.
In March 2001 a keyboard was donate to the church by Brother Landzaat Wright, April 2001, the church congregation started raising money to add padding to the church pews. While the fundraising continued on this project, the members voted, for work to begin on the pews. The work was completed in June 2001.
In April 2002, the church purchased twenty-five new choir chairs for the choir stand.
In Fall of 2003, God instilled in our Pastor Terry M. Brow Sr. another vision for New Saint Mark. Our Pastor brought to the church leaders and membership a goal: the purchase of a 47 passenger church bus. With the initial $3,000.00 deposit from the church treasury and a $5,000.00 loan Deacon Tony Harris, the church was well on its way to realizing this goal. Through faith, church members begin donating money towards the purchase of the bus. God responded and blessed the church to achieve this goal. The bus company forgave the remaining amount owed on the bus; the bus was paid in full.
In early 2004, the church began its mission of updating the dining facility. This mission started the purchase of a new stove and refrigerator for the kitchen. Furthermore, a new microwave oven and other items donated by several church members.
Along with the physical changes that have occurred, the New Saint Mark Apostolic Faith Church Ministry continues to grow and has been blessed spiritually as well under our God-given leader. Pastor Terry M. Brown, Sr. continues to preach the importance of salvation and being spirit-filled. Whether it's a Sunday morning sermon or a bible study lesson, he reminds us "that the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life" and that " You must be born again" Through the power an anointing of God, souls are being saved and added to the church.
As New Saint Mark Holiness Church, under the leadership of its Pastor and First Lady Elder Sarah Brown continues moving forward in this new millennium, its mission remains the same. Its purpose is to teach its members to live a holy life so that they can win others to Christ.
We thank God for His many blessings to us! To Him be all glory and honor!