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Our Mission

To nurture a community where men, women, boys, and girls may find God and be found of God. We are called to address the needs of the whole person by activating our commitment to worship, preaching, teaching, outreach, and economic development.

Our Vision

Faith in Action.

Macedonia Dreams.

Our Values




Our Motto

One Church.

Many Communities.

Serving God.

Macedonia Baptist Church History, 1930 – 2023


In May 1930, under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, the Reverend Elias Broughton led a small group of believers to worship and praise the Lord in a meeting place on Third Street in Albany, New York. 


Among the original worshippers were: Lon Houston, John Wood, King F. Gardner, Percy Taylor, Beelreth Nelson, Thomas and Amanda Laster, Sylvia Sutton, Lewis Blackwell, Leona Turnage, Bremington Stinney, Luie Rivers, Landy Thomas, Marion W. Joe and others whose names have been lost to posterity.


Within two years, this fledging church had grown to well over thirty members, at which time it became necessary to develop a formal structure. On October 13, 1932, Macedonia Baptist Church was incorporated and began regular worship service at 31 Green Street, located in Albany’s south end. Macedonia was one of three Black Baptist churches located in Albany, Morning Star Baptist Church was the first and oldest, and Mount Calvary was the second.


Sylvia Sutton, an original worshipper, served as the first Church Clerk. King F. Gardner, Bremington Stinney, Luie Rivers, Landy Thomas, Thomas Laster, and Marion W. Joe were elected to the first trustee board. On January 4, 1935, Thomas Laster, Marion Joe, King Gardner, Sylvia Sutton, John Woods, and Leona Turnage, under the direction of Reverend Broughton, secured a $4,300 mortgage through the Home Savings Bank to purchase the former Engine 2 firehouse from the City of Albany located at 157 Livingston Avenue in the Arbor Hill section of the city. For almost forty years, this old, abandoned firehouse became the place where praise went up and blessings came down upon the Macedonia Baptist Church (ref. The Albany Times Union, August 25, 1953). 


During the thirties and early forties, Reverend Broughton provided spiritual nourishment that allowed Macedonia to grow and prosper in the Lord. The untimely passing of Reverend Broughton in 1945, ended a significant first chapter in the Church’s history and serves as a reminder that Christian service is not measured in terms of longevity but rather manifested in the presence of the Holy Spirit that dwells in the hearts and minds of the congregation.


The coming of the young and dynamic Reverend Dr. George L. Burns in 1945 as the second Pastor of Macedonia signaled a new era of growth, the fruition of hopes and dreams of Macedonia’s mothers and fathers planted fifteen years earlier. In 1953, almost twenty years after the purchase of the firehouse from the city of Albany, Macedonia saw the renovation of 157 Livingston Avenue converting the spiritual firehouse into a church for approximately $30,000. Prior to the renovation of the firehouse, the main heating system was a “pot belly” wood/coal burning stove.


The fifties saw Macedonia increase its service to the community. Members such as Assilee Threatt, Mae Johnson, Alice Jackson, and Fannie Ford often conducted fundraising gospel concerts at Philip Livingston Junior High School. The funds raised were instrumental in the building of the original Arbor Hill Community Center which, at the time, was administered by the Interracial Council.


Under the leadership of Reverend Dr. Burns, the music ministry was formed and included a senior choir directed by pianist Edna Wood. The senior choir regularly sang on the radio station “WABY” for a one-hour program every Sunday at 7:00 p.m. Harold Johnson, a member of Macedonia, hosted the program. The Macedonia Gospel Quartet, composed of young adults, was formed in 1954 from the youth choir. The youth choir under the direction of fifteen-year-old Doris Yvette Jackson was one of the largest in the Tri-Cities area.


Minnie L. Burns, the wife of Pastor Burns, was ordained and licensed in 1957. Reverend Mrs. Burns served as associate pastor of Macedonia and later became the Pastor of The Universal Baptist Church of Saratoga Springs, New York. Macedonia has also been the spiritual nursery of other future pastors and preachers such as Reverend Southall, Reverend William V. Callahan, Reverend Dr. Van I. Stuart, and Reverend Emmett H. Jeffress. 


The late 1960s were tumultuous times and a turning point in the history of Macedonia. Albany’s urban renewal transformed the Arbor Hill Community, destroying buildings and uprooting residents in the process. Macedonia was not spared. The church building at 157 Livingston Avenue was taken by the city through “eminent domain” forcing the Macedonia congregation to seek temporary sanctuary at the Hope Baptist Church on Clinton Avenue, the present site of Star of Bethlehem Baptist Church. By 1972, the church moved into its fourth home located at 172 North Allen Street. The Reverend Saul Williams was instrumental in assisting Reverend Dr. Burns with the acquisition of 170 and 172 North Allen Street and 2 Collins Place. During the transition period from 1967 through 1972, and the relocation from 157 Livingston Avenue to 172 North Allen Street, Macedonia continued to provide ministry.


Macedonia was one of the early Baptist Churches in the Albany area to have women ordained as deacons. In January 1985, Willie Mae Cherry, Marion Saunders, Ruth Turnage, and Sara Lawyer (daughters of Leona Turnage) were ordained. After forty years of faithful service, Reverend Dr. George L. Burns was called to glory on Wednesday, August 15, 1985.


Under the profound tutelage of the Holy Spirit, Macedonia was guided by the Church’s Associate Pastor, Reverend Matthew Jordan, until the Church extended the call to the Reverend Leonard D. Comithier, Jr., in August 1986, to serve as Macedonia's third pastor. Reverend Comithier was officially installed in November 1986. The pastoral tenure of Reverend Comithier was productive by many standards as the spiritual growth of Macedonia was manifested through ministries such as Community Engagement, Christian Education, Grief & Bereavement, Health, Women, Men, Youth, Hospitality, Music & Arts, Diaconate and others.


In addition to the Church’s membership and financial growth, Macedonia continued to grow spiritually. In the last decade of the twentieth century, Macedonia Baptist Church saw significant growth in historical proportion. In no other decade of the Church’s history had Macedonia witnessed a Diaconate Ministry of ten deacons, six associate ministers of the Gospel, and five choirs including the Men and Gospel choirs, the Praise Ensemble, the Young Adult and the Angelic Choirs.


The Vacation Bible School (VBS) program that originally started as a week-long half-day Vacation Bible School project grew into a two-week, full-day session. The Vacation Bible School visit to the Wellington Herbs and Spices, a working Afro-American farm in Schoharie County, resulted in the Church acquiring a plot of land at the farm to grow vegetables to provide fresh produce to the church family and faith community.


For many years under its 501(c)3, not-for-profit entity, Macedonia Initiatives in Community Development (MICD), Macedonia had a vibrant mentorship program in partnership with Siena College and created the Macedonia Higher Education Assistance Program (MHEAP). Macedonia’s commitment to academic excellence was the impetus for the establishment of the Macedonia Scholarship Fund, which provided financial assistance to Macedonia’s aspiring college-bound students as well as students throughout the Capital District region. The establishment of the community-wide Mentoring program for students who need academic support and the Scholarship Fund were both done out of a deep sense of commitment to the academic future of high school students. 


During the final decade of the twentieth century, the Macedonia Baptist Church embarked upon an expensive renovation project called Project’90 which was led by Deacon James Josey and included a complete renovation of the kitchen/fellowship hall, sanctuary, offices, and restrooms. In addition, the Church constructed a new ramp for the mobility challenged and redesigned the steps in front of the Church to allow our Church family and visitors greater access to worship service. A Memorial Garden was established as a living memorial to those who have labored with love in the Kingdom of God.


Relocating to Wilson Avenue:

Under the Vision of Pastor Comithier and the direction of the Holy Spirit, another chapter of the Macedonia Baptist Church began, as the Church relocated on November 20, 2011, to its fifth and current home at 26 Wilson Avenue in the Town of Colonie just over 2 miles from its previous location. 


Through the relocation, Macedonia was able to acquire 4 acres of beautiful land, a sanctuary that can fit 500 people, classrooms, a conference room, a 100-car space parking lot, and a large open area for outdoor activities. God has blessed Macedonia with resources to do ministry that would have been unimaginable to our courageous founders who started the church 81 years before. 


While the building was wonderful and functional with many amenities, it was still an old building that was not occupied for the two years immediately before we bought it, so a lot of work was done to upgrade and enhance it to optimize its function. These included purchasing new furniture, aesthetic improvements, a new roof, and the creation of a Pastor's office, an accessible bathroom, a media center, a renovated kitchen, and a brand new audiovisual system that allowed us to minister through technology to the entire world. During the next ten years, Macedonia would welcome over 450 new members, expand community impact, develop community partnerships, and watch God bless. 


We were also blessed that on February 12, 2020, Pastor Comithier married Ms. Rita Brown of Westbury New York in a small private ceremony on the Island of Barbados. 


Enter The COVID-19 Pandemic:

In March 2020, the world was massively hit by a global pandemic. Macedonia stepped up ministry support and provided spiritual relief to not just our congregation, but our community. Macedonia assembled a COVID-19 Workgroup at the beginning of March 2020, each week the workgroup studied information from the CDC, health authorities, and individual experts, and communicated the information each week to the membership. Pastor Comithier also included a COVID-19 segment as part of our virtual worship service each Sunday.


Macedonia quickly pivoted to continue to provide ministry. While physically we couldn't gather, we utilized technology to continue the work. Each week we live-streamed our worship services, our ministries met via tele- and videoconferencing and Bible study continued using ZOOM. We implemented Prayer and Praise weekly at 6:00 AM, 12 NOON, and 6:30 PM each Wednesday. 


We partnered each month with Catholic Charities, the Regional Food Bank of Northeastern New York, and other organizations to provide mass food distribution to distribute food, fresh fruits, and vegetables to those in the community. 


During this time we also dedicated our new memorial garden which included a tree in remembrance of all who lost their lives during COVID-19, and two benches, one to our Founding Pastor, Rev. Elias Broughton, and the other to Pastor Comithier. 


Later that year, on October 17, 2020, Pastor Comithier announced that he would be retiring from pastoral ministry effective at the end of November 2021. This would culminate thirty-five years as Pastor of Macedonia and 40 total years of pastoral service. While we were saddened to know Pastor Comithier was retiring, we were grateful for the three-plus decades of leadership that he provided to us and happy that he could then move on to the next phase of his life. 


Pastoral Transition

On November 24, 2020, during an in-person and virtual meeting, The Reverend Michael-Aaron Poindexter was introduced to the Macedonia congregation and a call for affirmation was made by Pastor Comithier for Reverend Poindexter to succeed him upon his retirement at the end of November 2021. The announcement was a process that progressed through the different groups in the church: Diaconate, Trustees, Officers, and members from October 2020 to November 2020. The members in attendance unanimously said “Amens” as a signal of confirmation and on Sunday, December 6, 2020, Rev. Poindexter officially accepted the call in the presence of the Macedonia congregation as the 4th Pastor of Macedonia. 


For the next eleven months from January 1, 2021, to November 30, 2021, Pastor Comithier and Pastor-Elect Poindexter would walk together and transition leadership. 


Retirement Celebration of Reverend Leonard D. Comithier, Jr.

During 2021, we celebrated the upcoming retirement of Reverend Comithier. 


All the ministries’ events of 2021 were dedicated to Pastor Comithier varying from outdoor gatherings at homes, concerts, and an "Evening of Tributes". This season culminated with the grand celebration from November 19th to November 21st, kicking off with a Banquet Honoring Pastor Comithier where Rev. Dr. W. Franklyn Richardson of Grace Baptist Church/Mt. Vernon, NY served as the keynote speaker. Then we had a Saturday afternoon with Recording Artist Jerel Crockett at Hudson Valley Community College. We culminated the celebration on Sunday with Worship. Our 11:00 am celebrant was The Reverend Victor E. Covington, Pastor of The Union Baptist Church, Albany NY, and The Reverend Jesse V. Bottoms, Pastor of The Beulah Baptist Church, Poughkeepsie, NY at 4:00 pm.  


Pastoral Leadership of Reverend Michael-Aaron Poindexter

As the Pastoral leadership of Rev. Comithier came to a close at Macedonia, the Pastoral leadership of Pastor-Elect Poindexter began as we entered 2022. This era began with great anticipation and excitement. 


Understanding the remarkable leadership and legacy of Reverend Comithier, one of Pastor-Elect Poindexter's first official acts as Pastor was requesting the congregation to give the distinct title of Pastor-Emeritus to Reverend Comithier. The congregation unanimously agreed, and Rev. Comithier became Pastor-Emeritus Comithier. Pastor-Elect Poindexter also spearheaded the request to have the Town of Colonie rename Wilson Avenue where the church is located, Reverend Leonard D. Comithier, Jr., Way. 


In 2022, our church theme during his first year as Senior was “Dream Big!” and he conducted several surveys and workshops with the Macedonia ministry leaders to understand what things were working and should continue as well as identify some new things that could further enrich the congregation.


The Pastoral Installation of Michael-Aaron Poindexter:

To officially welcome our new Pastor and his family to Macedonia, a series of very family-fun activities were coordinated including a virtual paint party celebrating Lady Amber, a Drive-By Meet and Greet with the Poindexter Family, a Roller Skate Party for the Poindexter children, and youth of Macedonia, and the official Service of Installation. 


The Installation Service for Pastor Poindexter was held on Saturday, April 23rd at noon, and his Pastor, The Rev. Dr. Damone Paul Johnson, Metropolitan NTM Baptist Church, Albany, NY, served as the Installation Celebrant. Pastor Jahmel K. Robinson, of the Mt. Zion Baptist Church, Albany, NY was the Installation Sunday morning preacher. Pastor Robinson brought the entire Mt. Zion congregation to worship with Macedonia and celebrate Pastor Poindexter. The entire installation season was a joyous occasion and marked the beginning of a new era for both Macedonia and Pastor Poindexter and his family. 


Some of our 2022 Reasons to Rejoice!

  • New Members: Welcomed 94 new members to Macedonia who joined online and in person. 

  • Finances: Significant growth financially, both in reserves and efficiency. This includes the implementation of additional methods of giving. 

  • Higher Horizons, Inc.: Created a new Tax Exempt, Not-For-Profit 501c3 called “Higher Horizons Development Corporation” which is tasked with, among other things, combating food insecurity, providing youth development, raising awareness around mental health, and assisting in housing stability.  

  • Community Engagement: Officially approved by the Regional Food Bank of Northeastern New York to be a recognized member and open a food pantry which concluded a lengthy process that provided us access to funding and the opportunity to purchase food for our pantry at lower prices. Our new pantry opened in February 2023. This is an initiative of our 501c3. 

  • HAVEN Connect: In partnership with NYS OMH and Mt. Sinai Medial Center, Macedonia was one of four churches selected to institute a program designed to provide suicide prevention for adolescents. (HAVEN) is a suicide prevention program designed to help youth feel socially and emotionally connected to natural, cohesive, social networks and to enhance their adaptive coping skills to help prevent suicide among African American youth who attend predominantly Black churches. This is an initiative of our 501c3. 

  • Community Block Party – Food, Games, Winterwear giveaway, Bounce House, etc. for Macedonia and members of our community.

  • Team Growth: Hired a social media/multi-media specialist to improve internal and external communications and processes. Reorganized the Office Manager’s position to make it “Manager of Community & Office Life“ 

  • Two remodels of our church website and a dramatic increase in social media presence and strategy. 

  • Fall EmpowerU - 6-Week Empowerment Workshop Series covering Children, Teens, Men, Women, Marriage, Finances, and Health & Wellness. Over 150 registered and attended. 

  • Music & Arts: Ministry presented “A Star is Born – A Modern Day Nativity” written by Macedonia’s own resident playwriter, Deacon Terry Owens. 

  • Church anniversary: Reimagined Macedonia’s 92nd Church Anniversary with a Macedonia Family Night at the Bethlehem YMCA, Prayer and Breakfast, and our culminating anniversary service where our guest was Rev. Dr. Eric S. Shaw, of Stafford, VA.

  • Leadership: Celebrated God’s blessings as one of the young men who was born in the church, Antonio Delgado was elected as Lieutenant Governor of New York State.


Some of our 2023 Reasons to Rejoice:

While we spent all of 2022 doing our church theme of  "Dreaming Big!", we were all ready to enter 2023 with a desire to work toward these dreams! Our 2023 dream is “Moving from Dreams to Reality!”  We are working toward accomplishing these overall church initiatives:  

  • Reimagining Space: This is a project to upgrade and enhance our physical plant for ministry in this new age. While our church is an amazing place of fellowship, warmth, and worship, our facility can be enhanced to better showcase that in this new post-pandemic era.

  • New ministries – created the following three new ministries:

  • Greetings with Love: Ministering to our Macedonia sick and shut-in by sending specialized cards, wreaths, and other expressions of love.

  • Rel·e·vant: Ministering to members who are 21 to 40ish

  • Marriage: Ministering to our Macedonia married couples through workshops, fellowship, retreats, and Christian Education.

  • Assimilation: Developing a process that engages people from the first time they visit through membership. This includes but is not limited to new member orientation, intentional fellowship, purposeful follow-up, and ministry involvement.


First Pastoral Anniversary! 

In April we enthusiastically celebrated our Pastor, Rev. Michael-Aaron Poindexter’s one-year anniversary with a series of amazing events:


A SNEAKER BALL Anniversary and Graduation Gala with lots of fellowship, good food, and great music at Pastor and Lady Poindexter's alma mater, The University of Albany Campus Center Ballroom. This was also a celebration of Pastor Poindexter graduating with his second Master's degree, this time a Master of Social Work (M.S.W.). 


We also had a Pre-Anniversary worship service where our guest celebrant was The Rev. Dr. Carl Washington, President, Empire Baptist Missionary Convention, and the climax Anniversary Service where the Rev. Dr. Damone Paul Johnson, Pastor, Metropolitan NTM Baptist Church was our guest celebrant. 


Looking ahead

As we thank God for what He has done, we move forward with great anticipation for what He will do! In the words of a cherished old hymn by Albert Goodson:

”We’ve come this far by faith, Leaning on the Lord,

Trusting in His holy Word, He's never failed us --yet.

Singin' oh, oh, oh, can't turn a-round, We’ve come this far by faith.”

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