Something New - from something Old
Since 1911 there has been a church meeting at the corner of Reiger Avenue and Augusta Drive. In that year the Congregational Denomination, already very active in East Dallas, established its first structure made from wood. Conveniently located on the new trolley line traveling east from downtown, Junius Heights boasted over being the development with the single largest ‘one-day lot sale’ ever recorded in Dallas real estate history.
In 1924 the need for a larger, more permanent, structure was realized, and a “Gothic type architecture, of solid brick in a blending of grays" — was completed by 1926 - at a cost of $32,000. (Dallas Morning News, November 1, 1926.)
In 1939 the Congregational church relocated to the north, out in the country near what today is Inwood and Royal Lane. That same year a small Baptist congregation began renting the building, and in 1940 they were able to purchase the church. In the years that followed the Junius Heights Baptist Church established a vibrant community ministry impacting scores of young, post- World War II adults moving to Dallas to find work and start careers.
As the church moved into the 70s members began moving out - to nearby suburbs, and by the turn of 21st century the once thriving church with attendance in excess of 300 each Sunday rarely saw 50 worshippers. Over the next years membership dwindled to a handful made from 2 congregations - a Hispanic congregation of 30 to 40 persons and an English-speaking congregation of less than 10 - and the church buildings fell into disrepair.
In late 2017 worshippers from North Dallas and Plano, sensing the need to restore both the building and a community-based ministry, began working with the handful of remaining members. With cooperation from the Texas Baptist Missions Foundation and the Dallas Baptist Association a plan was developed to start a new mission within the existing church. Since then, over 250,000 dollars has since been raised and repair and restoration begun. Today the Holy Spirit is breathing new into old buildings and since September of 2018 the Good News of Jesus Christ is being lived out on this historic site.