Homewood Cumberland Presbyterian Church, founded in a brush arbor in 1883 and organized as a Cumberland Presbyterian Church on May 3, 1885 as a member of Alabama Presbytery, is the oldest church in the city from the standpoint of continuous service. For over ninety years the Church was known as the Oak Grove Cumberland Presbyterian Church. Birmingham Presbytery changed the name to Homewood Cumberland Presbyterian Church in 1979.
In the early days of the Church, when Birmingham was but a twelve-year-old village, Oak Grove was a farming and dairying section, with approximately thirty dairies in the vicinity. There was no Green Springs Highway until 1936 and people went to Birmingham by way of what is now Columbiana Road or Scott Street.
When the Cumberland Presbyterian Church and the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) voted to unite in 1906, Homewood Church voted to remain with the Cumberland Presbyterians who refused to enter the union. A group that supported the unification left Homewood Church and formed Edgewood Presbyterian Church six years later.
The Church was originally located at the corner of Green Springs Highway and Oxmoor Road on land donated by some of the first members, William and Amanda Sellers. A total of four different buildings were erected on that property during the eighty-four years the Church was at that location.
The construction of Interstate 65 forced the Church to relocate in 1967 to the present property on Columbiana Road and new facilities were constructed. An addition was completed in 1983.
Homewood Church has had a rich heritage in Homewood and has had a great impact on the city over the years. Her members have served as members of the City Council, Fire Department and Chief, Police Department and Chief, educational leaders, members of many city boards and in other capacities. For many years, the Zelosophian Academy was part of the Church, and many of the early leaders in the area received their education there. One of its leading teachers was the Rev. J.H.B. Hall, for whom Hall Avenue and the Hall-Kent Elementary School are named.
Pastors of Homewood Cumberland Presbyterian Church (1883 – 1946)
Rev. J. W. C. Hail (Founding Pastor)
Rev. James Hugh Blair Hall (Founder of Zelasophian Academy in 1892 and pastor of Oakgrove Cumberland Presbyterian Church, 1901-1903)
Rev. S. S. Oglesby; Rev. Hyche; Rev. Lewis; Rev. Denson; Rev. Cheshier; Rev. Overton; Rev. Carpenter; Rev. B. E. Lee; Rev. E. C. Lee; Rev. Cornelius; Rev. Jones; Rev. Caldwell; Rev. Milligan; Rev. Herring; Rev. Alinder; Rev. LaFollette; Rev. Ezell; Rev. A. C. Acton
Pastors of Homewood Cumberland Presbyterian Church (1946 – Present)
Rev. E.W. Johnson, Associate Pastor (December 1, 1968 – March 22, 1971)
Rev. Don Thomas (June 1, 1969 – July 12, 1970)
Rev. Howard Melton (November 1, 1970 – August 15, 1972)
Rev. Charles Ward (September 10, 1972 – May 10, 1973)
Rev. Brad Sutherland (August 5, 1973 – July 5, 1975)
Rev. J. Don Clark (November 16, 1975 – July 4, 1999), Pastor Emeritus (March 14, 2010)
Rev. Kevin Colvard (October 3, 1999 – December 31, 2008)
Rev. Dr. Lindy Martin, Interim (2009)
Rev. Dr. John Lee Taylor, Interim (2009)
Rev. M. Derek Jacks (September 14, 2009 – Present)
Rev. Sherrad C. Hayes, Associate Pastor (April 15, 2017 – Present)
Learn more about the history of the Cumberland Presbyterian Church