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Purpose Statement

"Expanding the Kingdom of God through Ministry"

Vision Statement

We are a Christ centered, biblical based, ministry motivated church who has committed itself to the Great Commission and daily growing together in Christ.

A Promise From "The Mark"

You are our guest, and those who visit God's house are very important to us:


We promise to Always:


 - Make you feel welcome in God's house

 - Allow The spirit to permeate the sanctuary with             praise and adoration

 - Reflect the love of Christ

 - Keep the preaching and teaching of the gospel               message as our primary focus

  The word of God challenges us in Hebrews 13:2 to        be kind to strangers, for some who have done this        have entertained angels without realizing it!

What We Do At "The Mark"

M = MINISTER to the needs of people (Ministry)


A = ABOUND in a spirit of praise and adoration                     (Worship)


R = REACH out and go spread the gospel of Jesus                 Christ (Evangelism)


K = KNOW the word of God through Bible teaching               (Discipleship)

In the early 1800’s, many of the settlers arriving in the Collin County area were slave owners who thought they would be able to keep their slaves longer by settling in this area.

People were arriving from the northern territories to Texas. Northern territory slave-owners were having great difficulty keeping their property and they felt this was a safe area to settle in. When they settled in the McKinney area they found the Negroes more of a burden than a benefit. There was plenty of land, but it had to be cleaned off and adapted to cultivation. In 1848, many churches reported that there seemed to be no segregation, for on the church rolls were the names of several colored members as well as the names of their owners. God began laying a strong foundation for His people who were about to be free.


The legacy of the Saint Mark Missionary Baptist Church (then known as the Free Missionary Baptist Church) began in 1879, under the leadership of Rev. Jones and Rev. Dick White. Being led by the Holy Spirit, these men conducted prayer service from house to house. The membership of Free Missionary Baptist Church was made up of former slaves who had a burning desire for a place to worship. They established their first place of worship on the Isaac Graves farm, northeast of the City of McKinney.

All around you could see the beginning of growth for this small village. McKinney was growing into one of the wealthiest small cities in the state. As the city of McKinney grew, Saint Mark was a spark for the growth of other Christian fellowships in the African American communities. In April 1882 the congregation of First Baptist Church of McKinney, at Drexel Street was organized under the direction of the Rev. A. R. Griggs. It was originally known as the Second Baptist Church. McKinney and the county got its first telephone exchange in October 1883. In 1884, about 14 miles down the road in Collin County another colored congregation was organized as the Mt. Zion Colored Baptist Church. This church would later be known as the Shiloh Missionary Baptist Church. By 1885, the city had three weekly papers, two banks, gristmills, flourmills, and opera house, six churches and a population of two thousand.


On June 2, 1886 Free Missionary Baptist Church underwent a named change to the Saint Mark Baptist Church. That same year the church purchased two lots of the Ed Bradley survey (also known as 507 Titus) and built a brush arbor to worship in. Later, a one-room frame building was built with a simple pulpit and benches, all made by hands of the members to be used in their place of worship.

All of this was illuminated to the next level when in 1889 McKinney and the county received electric light service. The city was still in need of infrastructure to better serve McKinney. City streets were not paved yet and the editor of the Weekly Democrat wrote, “The holes in the street are so big the city should erect signs saying, “No bathing and fishing allowed.”

The early 1900’s saw the beginning of rural delivery of mail on Dec. 2, 1901, with three routes. The first commercial made automobile was driven into McKinney on July 17, 1903. This car cost $673.00 and would go about twenty-five miles an hour. A big celebration was held on June 30, 1908 for the first interurban car to pass through McKinney. It ran from Dallas to Sherman.


The traffic lights were put into operation in McKinney in June 1935. At that time McKinney had three wholesale grocery houses. The city was considered one of the largest wholesale and retail mule markets in the state. Due to the growth in McKinney they now had a federal post office building and a number of manufacturing industries. Some of the industries that were thriving in the area at this time were a one million, two hundred thousand barrel capacity flourmill, a modern compress, a cottonseed oil mill, and a large veteran’s hospital. The population in McKinney around this time was 14,000.

In 1942, the gospel globetrotter, Rev. Booker T. Jones became the pastor of Saint Mark. During his 31 years of service, the church underwent many changes and showed tremendous growth. Under the Jones’ administration the church was rebuilt in 1960. Not only did Rev. Jones discharge his pastoral duties, he was involved with community activities and concerned about the welfare of the people. After 31 years of service, Rev. B. T. Jones retired and delivered his last sermon at the Saint Mark Baptist Church on February 10, 1974.


Between 1974 and 1983 Saint Mark was served by three ministers, Rev. John H. Williams, Rev. Charles L. Rainey and Rev. Erie D. Fields. In 1979 the Historical Society of Texas gave Saint Mark her historical marker having documented Saint Mark as the oldest Africian American church in McKinney.


On September, 1983, a native son, Charles S. Wattley was called to pastor. Many changes have developed since Pastor Wattley began his work at Saint Mark. He promoted the renovation of the Titus Street location, strengthened the opportunities for people to participate and work in the church. In September of 1993, he relocated the church to its present site at 1308 Wilcox Street. In the past two years Pastor Wattley has also led the leadership team and members of this church in purchasing 2.3 acres of land located at 1305 Wilcox Street and 604 Rike Street. Pastor Wattley has reached back in time and embraced the wisdom and strength that has sustained the legacy of Saint Mark Baptist Church. Seeking to embody the dream of Rev. Jones and the vision that God has given him, Pastor Wattley has begun to move toward the fulfillment of the dream and the manifestation of the vision. He has established a new emphasis for the church by concentrating on the concept of serving God through ministry in all aspects.

The 28 plus years that Pastor Wattley has been at “The Mark” have been unique in the history of our church. Once again we find ourselves at the threshold of the wonders that God has in store for us as His people and as a group of believers.


The challenges of a technologically advanced world reinforce our need for strong spiritual leadership and the willingness to obey God’s word. Our faith in God and our legacy demands that we remain faithful to the dreams of the past by fulfilling the vision of the future. With God’s help; we can and we will continue to “Press toward The Mark of the high calling which is in Christ Jesus.”



Church History

Historical Overview

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