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Westover Bapist Church
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 History

1940 - First meeting held July 21, at Swanson Junior High School, opposite the current church site.  On August 12, 1940, the Church was formally established, 76 people united with the new Church, and called Rev. Perry L Mitchell as the first pastor. The current three and one-half acre site was purchased at a cost of $4,500.

1941 - Ground was broken on May 11, for the first Sanctuary which is now called Perry Mitchell Chapel.

1942 - In March, the first unit of the building which includes the Perry Mitchell Chapel was completed and the parsonage on Ivanhoe Street was purchased.

1943 - In March, Rev. W. Barker Hardison was called as pastor after Rev. Mitchell resigned to enter the Navy Chaplaincy program.

1945 - On April 30, Boy Scout Troop 162 was chartered.

1950 - The second unit of the building which includes the Preschool was dedicated at a cost of approximately $100,000.

1958 - The third unit of the building which includes the present day Sanctuary was completed at a cost of $750,000.  Opening day services were held on July 20, Westover’s 18th anniversary.

1968 - The beautiful stained-glass window in the baptistery of the Sanctuary which depicts the trinity was added by Russell Church Studios of Mount Airy, North Carolina.

1972 - The Women’s Mission Union began the Westover Preschool and Parents’ Day Out Program.

1977 - The church called Rev. Howard D. Rees as interim pastor after Dr. Hardison resigns to take a new pastorate.

1978 - A 43-rank pipe organ was built and installed by Moller Organ Company of Hagerstown, Maryland

1979 - The church called Rev. James O. Compton as pastor. Westover sponsors a Hispanic congregation now known as Iglesia Bautista Hispana de Westover; its current pastor is Rev. Oscar Prado.

1984 - Westover called Rev. James G. Banks as pastor after the resignation of Rev. Compton.

1990 - Westover called Chaplain Joel Rayfield (Maj. USAF) as interim pastor after Rev. Banks resigns to take a new pastorate.

1992 - The church called Rev. Chester Smith as its next pastor.

1997 - Westover called Rev. Carol Ripley-Moffett as interim pastor after Rev. Smith leaves for a new pastorate.

1999 - Rev. Wayne L. Colton is called as Westover’s next senior pastor. The Selma Levine School of Music, now known as Levine Music, becomes a building partner.

2003 - Rev. E.E. “Duke” Wheeless serves as interim pastor after Rev. Colton retires.

2005 - Rev. W. Terry Barber is called as Westover’s seventh Senior Pastor.

2006 – Several new Bible Study classes started: Young Adults, Senior and Junior High. Preschool/Parents’ Day Out (PDO) Program provides educational workshops for parents and staff to increase the quality of instruction and parental care. Westover expands community language worship opportunity by inviting Grace Mongolian Christian Church to utilize the Perry Mitchell Chapel.

2007 – Rev. Nichole Tota was called to a part time position of Minister to Children and Youth.

2008Vacation Bible School conducted under the direction of Karen and Lanette Smithson with assistance from volunteers. The Westover Baptist Church held “Children’s Fun Day” open house in conjunction with preschool/PDO in October for the parents and children. Games, refreshments and a Moon Bounce attracted thirty community children and their parents. The Early Childhood Music Education program for community children performed a Christmas program with over one hundred in attendance. Children learned piano, violin or cello and hand bells. Pastor Barber implemented Wednesday Afternoon Prayer Service for the community, to include a Bible Study.

2009 – Westover hosted a community-wide Good Friday Service with local churches and over 1,100 in attendance. Rev. Michael Youngblood began teaching adult Sunday School class. 

2010 – Westover celebrated its 70th Anniversary.  

2013 – Rev. Nikki Tota became Bible Study Director with Rev. Michael Youngblood teaching an adult class, and Jacqueline Youngblood began a new Sunday School Class for Women. Several events ended the year hospitably: Fall Festival Day, Thanksgiving Food Drive, Christmas Food Drive, Children’s Christmas Pageant.

2014 - Rev. Michael Youngblood, Westover’s current Senior Pastor, is called after Rev. Barber retires.

2015 – Rev. Patricia Fears is called to be Associate Pastor of Programs, and Rev. Pamela Moyer joined the staff as Associate Pastor of Communication and Administration. During the year, WBC held Special Worship Services honoring Arlington’s Finest (Police, Fire and EMS), the Arlington Food Assistance Center (AFAC), and Boy Scout Troop 162. A meaningful  Good Friday Service was arranged combining the Chinese, Hispanic, Mongolian and English-speaking congregations. Westover initiated Movie Night events as an outreach to the Westover community and beyond. Events are hosted outside in the courtyard during the warm weather season and inside during colder months. Refreshments are served and games are planned for children who attend. Annual Vacation Bible School was launched with 35 participants and many volunteers with the theme of Veggie Tales. Westover celebrated its 75th Diamond Anniversary with Guest Speaker, Dr. Dee Whitten, Executive Director of NorthStar Church Network and a luncheon following worship. WBChosted a Christmas Eve Candlelight Service and initiated a Watchnight Prayer Service at 11:30 pm to end the years in prayer and welcome the New Year in prayer.

2016 – Winter Blizzard, Jonas, dropped 26 inches of snow in the Washington metropolitan area. With roads impassable, 15 members remotely met and held a modified worship service with Bible Study and prayer by online and telephone conferencing. We continue to offer Bible study by remote dial-in each week for those outside of our geographic area. Westover hosted its first Women’s Conference: “Investing in Your Own Excellence: Achieving Financial Freedom.”  Michelle Singletary, nationally syndicated columnist for The Washington Post was our Keynote Speaker; eight sessions led by other financial leaders were conducted plus a catered lunch for participants. This year, Westover participated in the “Food Fight,” a massive non-perishable food packing event, hosted by the NorthStar Church Network which partnered with Feed My Starving Children and Capital Area Food Bank to battle hunger both globally and locally. Westover initiated and continues to offer Tuesday Evening Prayer Time, where the Sanctuary is open to the church and community for prayer. With guest speaker, Rev. Danielle L. Bridgeforth, JD, MDiv., Director of Enrollment and Development at John Leland Center for Theological Studies in Arlington, Westover celebrated its 76th Anniversary. Worship was followed by a light luncheon. For the Westover Church Homecoming, Rev. Michael Catlett was our guest speaker.. As an outreach, Westover began hosting Friends and Family Sunday on the 5th Sunday of the month. Inviting friends and family members into fellowship strengthens the ties of our Christian bonds as we get to know one another in a more casual setting over Bible Study, Worship and a light lunch. Reverend Patricia Hailes Fears, Westover’s Associate Pastor for Programs, was called to be Senior Pastor of Fellowship Baptist Church of Washington, D.C. Continuing the Family Movie Night outreach, we invited the community’s children and parents to a Fall Free Movie Event, “It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown” and a Free Christmas Movie Event, “Polar Express”, with pizza, snacks, crafts, and games.  Christmas Day was on Sunday;, worship was held with the hope to also connect families who were travelling or stationed elsewhere. Worship was held with Remote Video and Audio Feed for participation by individuals who could not attend and to facilitate family members to worship together. One member’s daughter dialed in from Africa to be with her siblings and father on Christmas Day!

2017 – WBC formed a Sanctuary Choir. A Community Shred Event was co-hosted with a local realtor, where neighbors and members could bring up to 5 boxes of documents for secure destruction. Refreshments, water, VBS flyers, worship invitations and conversation were shared. We hosted a youth group from Ball Camp Baptist Church of Knoxville, Tennessee for their Summer Mission Project. They participated in Bible Study, Worship and helped set up for Vacation Bible School. Rev. Dr. Trisha Miller Manarin, Coordinator for the Division on Mission, Evangelism and Justice at the Baptist World Alliance, Executive Coordinator with the Mid-Atlantic Cooperative Baptist Fellowship, and the Director of Supervised Ministry for John Leland Center for Theological Studies helped us celebrate our 77th Anniversary.. For our July Friends and Family Sunday, we celebrated the dedication of two ladies with a combined 91 years of experience serving Westover Baptist Church: Mrs. Margaret Greene and Mrs. Charolette Brown. Neighbors and family attended worship and a special luncheon, where people could share warm stories of their contributions.

Westover Baptist Church
1125 Patrick Henry Drive | Arlington VA 22205-3517
P 703.237.8292 | F 703.237.3864