OUR HISTORY

You can learn more about the history of the Darby area here. You can see vintage photos from Dade City's history here.

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AMELIA BAPTIST CHURCH MISSION

On October 8, 1942, Lutz Baptist Church extended its arm into Dade City by forming the Amelia Baptist Church Mission. On October 27 there were 9 inaugural members: 

  • Mrs. C.H. Johnston
  • Mr. Leon Rabb
  • Mrs. Nellie Rabb
  • Mrs. Emmit Syzemore
  • Mr. Emmit Syzemore
  • Leon Syzemore
  • Mrs. Lula Parker
  • Mrs. Perry Bates
  • Mrs. Clifton Sessoms

For several months services were held in a vacant house in the Darby area. The Pasco School building was purchased and torn down and made into a church. 

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AMELIA BAPTIST CHURCH

 On September 17, 1944, the Amelia Baptist Church Mission was formally organized as Amelia Baptist Church. The inaugural meeting was opened by singing "Send the Light," after which Rev. Norman Bennett of Brooksville led in prayer. After several more songs, Cpl. R.L. Burnette led in prayer. All Ministers involved in the mission were then recognized:

  • Rev. V.C. McDonald
  • Rev. D.H. Combee
  • Bro. R.E. Hancock
  • Rev. W.F. Tyson

Rev. J.E. Rawls of Spencer Memorial Baptist Church of Tampa delivered the message for the service, entitled "Christ is the Head of the Church." The service concluded with the congregational singing of "We're Marching to Zion" and a prayer by Rev. D.H. Combee.


There were 30 charter members of the formally organized Amelia Baptist Church:

  • Mrs. W.P. Bates
  • Mrs. Charlie Croft
  • Miss. Helen Croft
  • Rev. D.H. Combee
  • Mrs. D.H. Combee
  • Miss Joyce Combee
  • Mr. C.H. Johnston
  • Mrs. C.H. Johnston
  • Mr. Vern Johnston
  • Mrs. Ida Johnston
  • Mrs. Audrey Johnston
  • Mr. Wilburn Kirkland
  • Mrs. Wilburn Kirkland
  • Beauford Kirkland
  • Mrs. Daily Miller
  • Mrs. Lula Parker
  • Mr. Leon Rabb
  • Mrs. Nellie Rabb
  • Mrs. Clifton Sessoms
  • Mr. Emmit Syzemore
  • Mrs. Emmit Syzemore
  • Leon Syzemore
  • Miss Mary Elizabeth Sessoms
  • Miss Robert Sessoms
  • Miss Emily Sessoms
  • Miss Inez Samples
  • N.V. Sessoms
  • Robert Sessoms
  • Miss Lola Mae Woodcock
  • Mrs. Fruzie White

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DARBY COMMUNITY CHURCH

Pastor Tom Craine retired in the spring of 2005.  After his departure, membership dwindled down to 12 people. In August of 2005, Chris Conti began serving as the interim pastor. The name of the church was changed from "Amelia Baptist Church" to "Darby Community Church" to better emphasize its outreach to the entire Darby area. 


In March of 2006, Chris was formally named the church's Senior Pastor. By that time, attendance had begun to climb back to between 40-60 people. Over the following years, as the church's ministries and congregation continued to grow, Darby would offer a variety of community outreaches such as the Cub Scouts, Martial Arts, Golden Arrows Day Camp, and Darby Christian Academy.


In August of 2011 Mark Narankevicius joined the church as the youth minister, and in November of 2014 he was ordained as Associate Pastor.

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