From a Brush Harbor to an exquisite building
From The Borders of Mt. Canaan to Pleasant Valley COGIC
During the mid-nineteen twenties, the Borders of Mt Canaan was established into a brush harbor. It was called the “Brush Harbor” because the structure was made of old boards ad the roof was covered with the treetops. The trees were cut off of the Holmes’ property. It was a small make shift building with a wood heater in the middle of the floor and wooden seats. The present of the Lord was there. The saints praised the Lord greatly until the heater pipe would fall to the floor. Some of the members included were Elder Burt Jackson, Bro. Willie and Doc Smith, Peter Thornton and Noah Sartin. The sisters included Mother Martha Smith, Molly Smith, Emma and Solan Craft.
The Church operated out of this setting with a handful of members and finally moved into a log building. Mother Lizzie Holmes and her family began attending during this time. The church was in a struggling. . Brother Doc tried to keep it going alone. The log building came into disrepair because most people had moved away from the area or passed away. After the church sat dormant for sometime, the spirit of the Lord spoke to Bro. Sandy Downs to revive it. This was in the early 1950’s. Bro. Downs purchased some property and built a building, which he did almost single- handed. The church was renamed by Mother Thelma Downs, the wife of Bro Sandy Downs. She named it Pleasant Valley after the Lord gave her the name in a vision.
Membership grew and Bro. Downs and a few faithful sisters went from house to house praying and reading the Word of God. Through their efforts, many gave their lives to the Lord and were filled with the Holy Ghost. God blessed the church as members grew stronger in the Word. Many of the members who could not read, including Bro. Downs, - God taught them how to read and understand the Bible. Most of the membership was farmers who did not have a lot of money. The members prayed for a pastor and the Lord sent Elder Israel Jackson, from Baton Rouge, La. He pastured for about 18 years. The members did great mission work in the community, sharing what they had and praying for the sick until they were delivered.
After Elder Israel Jackson’s death, the church was appointed several temporary pastors and finally appointed Elder Eugene Chess as pastor. He served a short time before he passed away. In 1973, Elder Acey Walker was appointed as pastor. The church began to grow and prosper. Elder Walker acknowledged the need for a new facility. The Pastor along with a few determined Deacons, motivated the membership to work for a new facility. It was not long before the old building was torn down. The New facility was completed in 1979. The Church was fully paid for in a very short time. In the year 2000, the Pastor’s new vision unfolded….From Vision to Reality!!