Our History



Our History


Waldo Baptist Church began in the year 1850 in a location then known as Sycamore Plains, in Pope County, Illinois. Today this is part of the Shawnee National Forest with the only remaining reminders of the Church’s location being the tombstones which marked the graves of the cemetery outside the church. Since that time it held its meetings in a school house, and a Masonic Lodge building which was located across the road from the present location.

 In 1977, Waldo Baptist Church voted to build a new sanctuary building at the present location. This building was completed in December of that year and the first service was held on that Christmas Sunday. Since then, God has blessed us with two other buildings, a Family Life Center with commercial kitchen, classrooms, gymnasium, and a youth building used for youth worship and Bible study. We have also added property and an outside pavilion with playground equipment for our children. Because of the grace and goodness of a Mighty God and the faithful service of many wonderful members we stand today as the largest county church in Massac County with modern facilities.


A TIMELINE OF God’s Faithulness


The Church Begins

Waldo Missionary Baptist Church is organized five miles northeast of what is now Waldoon a hill north of Mill Springs in Pope Co. IL.  The church was then known as Sycamore Plains.

Membership scattered and the few remaining members relocated in a log structure between Minder Corner and the Burlington Bottoms.  Due to rising water at times in the stream, they moved to Shadrock School located two & half miles northwest of the present Waldo.


A New Location

The Masonic order moved its building from Tindall Valley (Buzzard Roost & Mt. Olive) to a site across the road from the present church.  Waldo church worshipped in the first story of the log structure.


New Ground

Bob Henderson gives the church new ground to build on and Mr. & Mrs. Sam Burlington gives addtional ground to the west of the church.



Lots of change

Church members vote to build a belfry and repairs to the building.  Under Pastor James Pepper a basement with classrooms and recreation room is constructed.  Pastor Roosevelt Denson oversees the additon of a baptistry, restrooms, and Sunday School rooms.  John Douglas & Hobart Henderson donate ground for a parsonage where SeeSash School once stood.  


Full Time

Rev. Horry Dungan becomes the first full-time pastor.




New Land Purchased

Pastor Ralph Cooper leads the church in the acquistion of 3 & 1/4 acres of land across the road from Albert Loverkamp for construction of a new brick building.  


Construction Begins

Pastor Jack D. Russell leads the church in approving  Peck Associates to design a new church building.  On December 25th of the same year, the first worship service in the new building (current church building) which contains over 9,000 sq. ft.  


First Youth Pastor

Jackie Thompson becomes Waldo’s first youth pastor.




Families in focus

The church votes to buy additional land south of the church and later that year plans are approved to begin construction of a Family Life Center.  The original land was owened by Lloyd Loverkamp.


New Youth Building

Waldo acquires a 64′ x 25′ modular building from Massac Unit One School District.  The building contains one large room, a small office, kitchen, and bathrooms.  The building is transferred to Waldo and is dedicated for youth ministry.  This same year sees the purchase of three additional acres (from Lloyd Loverkamp) west of the current church location and new personnel offices constructed in the old fellowship hall.




Picnic Pavilion

The church approves the construction of a picnic pavilion on the east side of the church property.  The pavilion is constructed by Heath Building Material Inc. out of Mayfield Ky. and is 24′ x 50′.  Two playground sets are also added.