We honor all those who have gone before us because of their service to the Lord and their dedication of providing for our future. The history of Hillcrest Christian Church dates back to 1905 at which time the First Christian Church of McKinney saw the need to start a “Mission Church” in East McKinney. Little did they realize the effect this would have for the Lord and the people of McKinney.
In early 1905, a small group of men organized a Sunday School class in a four-room house at the corner of Anthony and Kincade Streets in McKinney, Texas. During the week of July 7, 1905, the Reverend George Bush held a tent revival on a vacant lot next to this house. Thirty-one people were baptized. A few months later, on October 4, 1905, the church was officially organized with a membership of forty people.
Wallace Wilson donated the land at 1109 East Anthony in McKinney and the construction of the first church building began in December 1905. Many members donated their time and resources to the construction of the building. First Christian Church of McKinney also provided financial assistance for the construction which cost approximately $1,500.
On February 6, 1906, the first service (a special prayer meeting) was held at the building site. The building was completed on April 12, 1906. The new church was commonly known as the “Second Christian Church”, but the dedicated name of the church was “East McKinney Christian Church”. For several decades, the church flourished as members came from east McKinney and the rural areas outside of southeast McKinney. But the church did not survive the early years without problems. During the Great Depression, the church had to close its doors for a brief period of time. In the early 1930’s, there was simply not enough money to pay the bills. This did not last long as two members took it upon themselves to pay the bills and reopen the church doors for services again.
God provided the way and the church flourished again. In 1956, exactly 50 years after the first service, attendance had outgrown the original church building. So, plans for construction on another building at the same location began. The men who could work all day did so. Others with regular day jobs would help with construction in the late afternoon and evenings. Women assisted by pulling nails from lumber that was to be reused. On Saturdays, teenagers would also assist with the construction. The members of the church had banded together to complete this significant project, and the new building was dedicated on December 6, 1956.
The new building allowed East McKinney Christian Church to grow again. Members invited their friends, family and neighbors. People from all over McKinney and the surrounding areas were attending services regularly. This was especially true for Sunday School classes as over 300 people were regularly attending. Because of this growth, the church purchased three houses adjacent to the church building. This provided much needed parking area. One house was also converted to the church office and additional Sunday School classes.
As time went by, the congregation continued to grow and, once again, more room was needed. Because of this, plus other issues, it was decided to purchase land to build in the future. The church purchased five acres on West Virginia Street to construct a new building. Unfortunately, building on that site could not proceed. A few years later, the land at 509 South Graves Street was purchased. As plans for the new building developed, it was also decided to change the name of the church to bring a new identity to those who did not know us and give us a fresh start in bringing the lost to Christ. Hillcrest Christian Church held its first service at the new building on July 26, 1987. The dedication of the church occurred on September 20, 1987. Since that date, Hillcrest Christian Church has been and remains to be a very active part of the community.
Although Hillcrest Christian Church has never been a member of any denominational group or organization, the appropriate legal documents were filed on November 18, 1964 to be recognized as an Independent Christian Church. The church has retained that status to date.
Since its inception on October 4, 1905, our church has been blessed with dedicated men and women who have taken personal responsibility for seeing that our past will never be forgotten and that the work of the Lord is done as He intends it to be now and in the future. Hillcrest Christian Church remains true to its past in being a friendly, caring, compassionate group of Christian people serving the Lord and our community with their abilities and love for each other.
**Please note that specific names of individuals who have served or helped build our church buildings are not included in this short history of our church. This is done in fear of overlooking anyone who has helped make our church what it was in the past or what it is today.