Rising Star Missionary Baptist Church was organized on December 1, 1976 with the Rev. I. C. Green as founder and pastor. The first service was held on December 5, 1976 with 43 charter members, including an associate minister, one deacon, and 20 choir members.
During the week of the first service, Rev. Milton Robinson discovered the first building the church occupied located at 34 West 34th Street. Members decided to rent the building with the option to buy. The first service was held in this building on December 12, 1976. At that service, three new members were added to the membership. In 1977, the decision was made to purchase the building. After much negotiation, hard work, and prayer, the building was paid off in 1986.
In addition to Rev. I. C. Green, the following men of God have pastored Rising Star: Rev. Roosevelt Foley (1979-1984); Rev. A. J. Hall (1985-1986); Rev. James D. Shell (1986); and Rev. Amos L. Lewis (1987-Present). From June 1994 to September 1995, Rev. Ricardo Hatfield served as Interim Pastor during Pastor Lewis’ military assignment to Ankara, Turkey.
Over the past 35 years, Rising Star has been marked by a growing membership and expanding ministries. Currently, Rising Star has over 1,000 members and 50 ministries addressing the needs of the members and community. Each year members from various denominations and different walks of life are added to the family. God uses them to have a great impact on the programs and services of the church through their leadership and participation.
Rising Star has several partnerships in Southern Arizona including Church on the Street, a ministry with the vision and goal of reaching and helping those who are in need. Each week, this special ministry literally has church on the street. Rising Star has also partnered with Goshen Ministries, an outreach and service for African refugees who have relocated to Southern Arizona. Through these and other ministries and partnerships, Rising Star is able to reach beyond our four walls. But our church does not stop there, Rising Star has outreach and ministry projects around the world including; The National Baptist Convention New Initiatives Program; Turkey; Christian Alliance for Children in Zambia, Africa, and the Humanitarian Aid Foundation World Relief Organization.
Rising Star is also a proud member of the Southern Arizona Missionary Baptist District Association, Paradise Missionary Baptist State Convention of Arizona, the National Baptist Convention USA, Incorporated, the Interdenominational Ministerial Alliance of Tucson and Vicinity, and the Catalina Baptist Association.
In 2005, God blessed Rising Star to purchase land to build a new 4.3 acre campus located at 2800 East 36th street. A groundbreaking service was held on October 29, 2005. Construction began, and the church was complete and passed all inspections, and a victory march was held on March 31, 2007 from our old building to the new campus. Our first official service was held on April 1, 2007, one week before Easter. God blessed Rising Star with a tremendous turnout. We are so thankful that the Lord has blessed us to build a multi-million-dollar state-of-the-art building and campus to worship Him and equip His people for ministry. This year God enlarged our territory by allowing us to buy three houses on the east side of our current campus for future parking, giving us a total of five acres.
We are thankful for the visionary and kingdom-minded leadership of Pastor Lewis. Following the Holy Spirit, the Lord continues to energize the church with new life and vitality. Rising Star is a local church with a global reach ministering to the whole person with the message of faith, hope and love. Servant-leadership, sound teaching and preaching, warm fellowship, and genuine love make Rising Star the church it is today.
With God’s help, we will fulfill our destiny. We thank God for the way He is leading us. We are determined to let God build His church, His way, and for His glory.