The History of Stephen Gill Spottswood African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church
On May 18, 1975, the Reverend Lowell A. Williams was given a paper appointment to start a church in the Seat Pleasant, Maryland community by the Presiding Prelate Bishop Charles Herbert Foggie. During the next three weeks, Rev. Williams, along with his wife, sons and some neighbors began canvassing the neighborhood seeking persons interested in helping to start this new branch of Zion. The first service was held at Peppermill Village Recreational Center on Hill Road in Landover, Maryland on June 12, 1975 at 11:00am.
The name Stephen Gill Spottswood was suggested by Rev. James O. Page, then Pastor of Raymond L. Jones AME Zion Church, in remembrance of the passing of Bishop Spottswood in December 1974. During the first year the membership grew to forty members.
During a pastoral visit, Mrs. Janice Lewis told Rev. Williams that she would be moving to Kentucky and since the church was looking for a permanent home, she would be honored if the church would consider purchasing her home at 419 Hill Road. During the Philadelphia Baltimore Annual Conference held in May 1977, the Home Missions Board presented the church with $5,000 toward the purchase of the property. Mrs. Leslie Lee, a member of Spottswood, loaned the church an additional $5,000 towards the purchase of the property. After renovations by Bro. Nobel O. Williams and other members of the church family, the new church building was dedicated on Sunday, June 18, 1977. In April 2015, the mortgage for Stephen Gill Spottswood AME Zion Church was PAID IN FULL …TO GOD TO BE GLORY!!!
Rev. Lowell Williams served the congregation of S.G. Spottswood until January 1986. For six months, Bro. Ray Dennis, a local preacher at S.G. Spottswood supplied the pulpit until Rev. Wilmer T. Frazier was appointed in June 1986. Under the leadership of Rev. Frazier and Trustee, William Gilbert, the church began a food bank that was a tremendous blessing to the members of the community.
In June 1994, the Rev. Kathryn Brown was appointed Pastor of S.G. Spottswood. There were several programs that were instituted under her leadership; most notably the “Read, Enjoy, Achieve, Learn” program, the academic enrichment program and the Zion Academy Summer Day Camp. Rev. Brown served as Pastor for eight years until her appointment as the Philadelphia Baltimore Conference Director of Christian Education at the 2002 Annual Conference.
In June 2002, Rev. Quintin D. Borders was appointed and served until May 2009. From June 2010 to June 2012, Rev. Brandon Pennix as appointed as the Pastor and under his leadership, the ministry at the Kensington Nursing and Rehabilitation Center in Bethesda, MD was instituted. Rev. Paul S. Hoggard served as Pastor from June 2010 to September 2016, where he and his congregation adopted the Highland Park Elementary School.
On September 24, 2016, the Abundant Life and S.G. Spottswood AME Zion Churches were merged by Bishop W. Darin Moore and Bishop Moore appointed Rev. Jonathon D. Counts as the new Pastor of S.G. Spottswood. Under Pastor Counts leadership, he has implemented Sound of Victory Prayer Nights on Facebook Live; the Victory Institute that includes the teaching ministries of: Thursday Soul Food Bible Study; Leadership Academy; Sunday School, Seniors Bible Study and Missionary Studies. The congregation is are growing numerically and spiritually under the anointed teaching of the Word of God.