Dreamers are the architects of greatness whose visions lie within the soul. Some dreamers have visions which never come to fruition, whereas, others have visions that become realities. These Visionaries peer beyond the walls of skepticism and uncertainty and discern the future of hope that through their faith in God, they will obtain their goal.
Isaiah, the prophet, spoke of the Lord laying in Zion a foundation of stone; a prophecy referring to Christ's Church. The scriptures identify that foundation as Jesus. It was He who furnished the pattern for the church's existence; the doctrine for its faith; the purpose for its beginning; the commission for its expansion; and the program for its perpetuation.
Knowing the need of God's people in Madison, Illinois, a place of worship named Mt. Nebo Missionary Baptist Church became the reality of thirty-nine individuals and their visionary leader, Rev. Enoch Gibson. So it was in the year of 1899 that the late Rev. Enoch Gibson, Mt. Nebo's founder and first pastor, began the journey which has led to where we are now.
Rev. Gibson was not interested in a building of structural grandeur, but began Mt. Nebo in a small frame building located on the present site. Under the leadership of Rev. Gibson, Mt. Nebo continued to grow. Mt. Nebo's first deacons were Mr. William Webb and Mr. Spaulding.
In 1922, under the pastorate of Rev. R. D. Raspberry, the frame building was replaced with a brick structure. In 1943, a disastrous fire sept through the area. Several families were left homeless, and nothing except the four brick walls of the church edifice remained. Under the leadership of the late Rev. W. P. Alexander, the interior was rebuilt within the walls, which were not destroyed by the fire. March 1944, Mt. Nebo entered into a totally restored and renovated structure.
God continued to bless Mt. Nebo, and the church membership grew until the congregation and pastor at that time, Rev. Jerome Jackson, saw the need for expansion in order to serve God and mankind. In 1983, the brick structure, which had survived flood and fire, was razed so that a "new" Mt. Nebo could be built. Mt. Nebo members had worshipped in that building for sixty-one years.
The same spirit of 1899 was rekindled as Rev. Jackson and the membership marched into the present structure on April 28, 1984, giving thanks to the Almighty God for this accomplishment.
Although the new edifice met some of the needs of the congregation, it was under the direction and leadership of Rev. Jerome C. Chambers, that previously unfinished work, as well as extensive remodeling was accomplished. On May 22, 1994, Mt. Nebo was rededicated as a renovated edifice.
In 2005, under the pastorate of Rev. Ranodore M.Foggs, Mt. Nebo underwent a major redesign and remodeling of the sanctuary.
In July 2006, Rev. Ranodore M. Foggs resigned as pastor. The congregation proceeded, with the help of God, to seek a new leader.
In April 2007, God sent Pastor Júan D. Conway to be the Under Shepherd of this flock. Under Pastor Conway's leadership God gave the increase. The membership and attendance increased so much that it became necessary to remove the wall, between the sanctuary and the fellowship hall, to accommodate the overflow crowd.
Because of Pastor Conway's devotion to God and His people; ministries were formed to service the congregation and the community. Plans were formulated and efforts began to acquire a facility that would meet the spiritual and recreational needs of the community. Out of those plans the Quad City Development Center was born.
For over 100 years, Mt. Nebo has been a beacon of light on the corner of 2nd and Jefferson Sts., Madison, Illinois.