In 1961, the first stage of construction began with raising of the old church (leaving the entrance intact). Prince hall Grand Lodge, Grand master Curtis Blakely, officiated laying the cornerstone on March 12, 1961. By October 1961, membership had grown to 545 members. Many necessities were added in the next three years, including a kitchenette, choir loft, pews, baptismal robes, water coolers, carpeting, a Hammond Organ, a sound system, and new furniture, at an expense of $55,000.00.
To pay for all of these new improvements and construction, a lot of cooking and selling took place. We were growing in so many ways-spiritually, financially, and numerically.
There were many dedicated Christian men and women working fervently to accomplish these goals and with God’s help they were reached. To Him we give glory and the praise. He had blessed second New St. Paul with seven Associate Ministers, a Board of Deacons:
(Chester Holloway, Chairman, Charlie Rogers, James Benson, Nathaniel Williams, Robert Holloman, James Bethune, James bell, Robert Miller, Press Harper, Roosevelt Agnew, Lemuel Benson, Melto Harper, James Owens, and Noble Williams), a Trustee board, (Charlie Rogers, Charles Hudgins, Archield Twyman, James Lindsay, Charles Stephens, George Hill, Warren Grant, John Young, and Brother Eldridge), a Deaconess Board, a Nurses Unit, three melodious choirs; (Church Choir, Chorale Choir, Youth Choir), two choruses ( Male Chorus and the Paulette’s).
Four Usher Boards; (Senior, Young Adult, Junior, and Male). A Youth Organization of the Dept. of Christian education, Sunday School Department. Six clubs; (Flower, Volunteer Workers, Willing Workers, New members, pastor’s aid, Men’s Club, two Prayer Groups, a Senior and Junior Prayer Band.