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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Saturday, July 21, 2001

Where We Worship
Love flows at Bethel Missionary Baptist

By Zenaida Serrano Espanol
Advertiser Staff Writer

'Real Christian attitude' sets church apart

Pastor Richard Settle has been with Bethel Missionary Baptist since moving to Hawai'i from Tennessee in June 1999.

Gregory Yamamoto • The Honolulu Advertiser

Name of church: Bethel Missionary Baptist Church

Our denomination or affiliation: Missionary Baptist

Where we are: 1709 Ninth Ave., Palolo Valley

Our numbers: 57

Our pastor: Richard F. Settle

What we believe: According to Settle, one of the basic beliefs is that the New Testament church was established by Jesus Christ during his life's ministry.

"The origin (of the New Testament church) is when he called out his first disciples, and that's one of the unique beliefs that we have," Settle said. "Most (denominations) believe that it started on the day of Pentecost. We believe that it originated before that."

Our history: Bethel Missionary Baptist Church began as a mission in Waikiki in 1937 by E.K. Begley, a missionary from Arkansas. The church was then organized in 1939. In 1956, land was purchased in Palolo Valley, which is where the church stands today.

What we're excited about: Members are pleased with the success of two church events that took place last month. One event was an annual Bible Conference June 28-30 at the church. Settle said about 150 people from other Missionary Baptist churches statewide attended the conference for "fellowship and good preaching."

Bethel Missionary Baptist Church member Alton Waiamau teaches a Baptist training class. The church, at 1709 Ninth Ave. in Palolo Valley, has 57 members.

Gregory Yamamoto • The Honolulu Advertiser

The church also represented other Missionary Baptist churches from Hawai'i with an informational booth and display at an annual meeting of the American Baptist Association, June 21-23 in Fresno, Calif. About 3,000 people from across the country attended the meeting.

Settle said members are also happy about their growing congregation.

"We're excited about what the Lord's doing here," he said. "We've had 15 additions in the last three months."

What's special about us: Though the church is quaint and its congregation small, Settle said the congregation's "real Christian attitude" helps the church stand out.

"We're in great harmony," he said. "There's a lot of love shown."

Evangelism is also taking place "more and more through the people themselves," Settle said. "They're inviting their friends to come and speaking to their friends about the Lord and about salvation."

Settle has been at Bethel Missionary Baptist Church since he moved here from Madison, Tenn., in June 1999 and he said he also appreciates the kindness that the congregation has shown him and his wife over the years. "I've been in the ministry for 33 years and I guess I've never pastored a church that treated their pastor as well as these people do," he said. "So we have a real fellowship."

• Contact: Call 734-2927, e-mail bethel9hon@cs.com or visit the church's Web site at bethel-honolulu.truepath.com.

If you would like to recommend your church, temple or faith organization for a Where We Worship profile, e-mail faith@honoluluadvertiser.com, call 535-8174 or write: Where We Worship, Faith Page, The Honolulu Advertiser, P.O. Box 3110, Honolulu, HI 96802.