All you have to do to see a small portion of the blessings that God has blessed True Vine with is ride by the church, which is located on the side of Hwy. 52. Easy to see, easy to get to, and easy to find for anyone passing through. True Vine didn’t always have the beautiful grounds though that you see today.

True Vine Today

True Vine was started in early 1978 by Mike Poindexter, but it wasn’t True Vine then, it was known as White Plains Gospel Mission. White Plains Gospel Mission was located on Old Highway 601 in White Plains, NC the congregation started small but over time, as God blessed the congregation, it continued to grow. Along with the growth of the congregation came the need to formally organize as a church, on February 3, 1979 the White Plains Gospel Mission organized itself into a church with 18 members joining the first service. Along with the formal organization of the church came the question of what to name it. As with anything throughout the church’s history the bible was searched and the verse John 15:1 which reads, I am the true vine, and my father is the husbandman, was read and so from the words of Jesus the church was formally named True Vine Baptist Church.

The new young True Vine Baptist Church soon ran into a great problem, not enough room! In August of 1979 the church moved from the small humble beginnings of a little store front building to a church building on Easter Road in Mt. Airy, NC.

The “cow pasture” building

The building was bigger, the congregation continued to grow, and God continued to bless in the sanctuary that was known by anyone who went to the church as the building in the cow pasture. Soon after the move, it had come time for Mike Poindexter to step down as pastor of True Vine Baptist Church. The search was on for a new pastor and Tommy Worrell came to fill in for the young church and was voted in as Pastor on November 14, 1979.

God continued to bless, and True Vine continued to grow, but along with the blessings came persecution.

Tommy and Hattie Worrell
Newspaper article on church vandelism

The church was a constant victim of vandalism, church members would have to go over the one lane drive way and parking lot of the church before every service to search for nails and tacks that would be scattered out to puncture tires and discourage the church members from attending, members would have to guard outside the building during services to ensure that the cars in the parking lot were not vandalized during the services. These however wasn’t the only issues, the church dealt with break-ins, people setting up and drinking alcohol at the end of the church driveway shouting obscenities to the church members, and signs with threatening messages to church members began to be placed on trees down the narrow one lane gravel road that led to church building. Even with the persecution of the church going on God still continued to move, people were being saved and the church continued growing.

God shows us through his word in Romans 8:31 …if God be for us, who can be against us. So as the church and persecution grew the members of True Vine Baptist Church began to pray about the situation, and in 1981 voted to build a new building. Tommy Worrell had a vision of the church being in a prominent place where everyone could get in and out easily and that would be an easy place to find for travelers to the Mt. Airy, NC area. On April 24, 1985 Pastor Tommy Worrell came to the congregation and said that he had found some land on the side of Hwy. 52 near the VA. State line. It was decided by the church under the leadership of pastor Tommy Worrell to purchase the land. True Vine Baptist Church began to pray, and through God’s help raised enough money through members, other churches, and local business’ to purchase the land in 1987; which at the time it was just a large hill covered in timber that needed clearing so again the church through God’s help over time paid to have the land cleared off and have it ready to begin building the new church.

What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us?

Romans 8:31

In March of 1990 the members of True Vine Baptist Church had its ground breaking ceremony, construction began and members of the church along the side of Blue Ridge Construction began the task of erecting the new building for True Vine Baptist Church. After a few months of construction the new building was complete and on July 29, 1990 the first service was held in the new church. The congregation was thrilled people where being saved and the church was on cloud nine but in August of 1990 another trial came to the members of True Vine Baptist Church.

Groundbreaking ceremony
Construction of new building sanctuary
Construction of new building sanctuary
True Vine in early 90s

On Sunday morning August 26, 1990 Tommy Worrell was celebrating his birthday by preaching in the new, four week old pulpit of True Vine Baptist Church. After the service was over he left the new church grounds, went to his home and before the time had come for the 6:00 evening service passed away with a heart attack. The members of the church were devastated and searching for answers the only way they knew how and began to pray.

The death of Tommy Worrell sent a shockwave through the congregation of True Vine Baptist Church, but the members knew that their pastor was now in heaven and that True Vine Baptist Church had to continue on. With the church looking for a new pastor to lead, other events continued as Tommy Worrell had planned them which included a dedication service for the new building of True Vine Baptist church preached by Maze Jackson on September 30, 1990.

You can still listen to Tommy Worrell over at Beyond the Sunset.

Tommy Worrell

As the church mourned, the search began for a new pastor. Several came in and preached and the church continued to pray. In December of 1990 a young preacher from Southside Baptist Church named Rawley “Dink” Haynes Jr. came to fill in and preach for the church. On February 10, 1991 the church voted and Rawley “Dink” Haynes Jr. became the pastor of True Vine Baptist Church and still continues pastoring the church to this day.

Pastor Dink and his wife Debbie Haynes

With a new Pastor leading the congregation of True Vine Baptist Church things continued to move forward and the church continued to grow. The church not only was growing but dealing with paying off the large debt of the new building, but through the help of God the new building was soon paid off and the church celebrated with a note burning ceremony.

With the church growing and the new building of True Vine Baptist Church paid off, in 1995 It was time once again to rely on God to supply the church with the funds to build on to the church. True Vine needed more Sunday school rooms and a fellowship hall and that’s just what God blessed the church with. The work to build on to the church wasn’t without incident, during construction a storm came through and blew much of the frame work down, but this did not stop anyone, the debris was cleared and the construction continued as planned. A new addition was built with a fellowship hall, nursery, a profits chamber, and several Sunday School rooms.

True Vine Baptist Church continued to be blessed with powerful services and revivals, the new addition was paid off in just a few years, and True Vine continued helping others close to home and around the world. Missions became an even bigger part of True Vine Baptist Church and God has allowed the congregation at True Vine Baptist Church to give supplies, vehicles, and support to missionaries all around the world.

Storm damage during the building of sunday school rooms and fellowship hall.

There has been a lot of history to True Vine Baptist church since its small humble beginnings and there are still members from that small store front building in White Plains, NC. Many things about True Vine Baptist Church have changed over the years but one thing that’s remained the same is the fact that God still blesses and if you would like to see what he has in store for True Vine Baptist Church next we welcome all to come and visit with us and hope to see you soon!