Pleasant Hill Baptist Church 

Reflecting on Yesterday to Understand Today 


The Beginning ~ 1877 - 1907: The first church building located on South Clayton Street was indeed a small wooden building with very few amenities. However, it stood proudly and allowed God to do a mighty work at its pioneering location for some 30 years.   


Yesterday ~ 1907 - 1987: Around 1907, Pleasant Hill Baptist Church was moved from Clayton Street to 176 Church Street. Some of the pastors who served during these early years were: Pastor L.T. Jones, Pastor H. A. Woodson (1914), Pastor Powell (1915-1916), Pastor J. W. Williams (1916-1917), Pastors Jesse Collins and T. T. Gholston (1918), and Pastors Allen and B. L. Jackson (1920). Pastor L. L. Harris would assume pastoral duties in 1922 and serve gracefully until 1940 or 1941; Pastor John Joshua Grogan assumed the pastorate of Pleasant Hill Baptist Church and remained for 47 years.   Pastor Grogan’s vision for the church and community is still evident today, for he believed that while he taught God’s principles, the church should simultaneously be busy practicing God’s principles throughout the church and community. During these early years, Pleasant Hill was not only a place for worship in the community, but functioned during the week as a schoolhouse in collaboration with the 3-room facility of Renwick High (which later became Hooper-Renwick) School. Pleasant Hill allowed Renwick High School to hold classes in its building as early as 1945; and, also PHBC hosted functions such as baccalaureates and graduations as well as other school-related activities that assisted in the education of the black community in Gwinnett County. Pleasant Hill additionally served as a community-gathering place. During the 1950’s, wear and tear took a toll on the facility. Under the leadership of Pastor Grogan, the church was reconstructed while worship services were held at neighboring churches. The reconstructive brick edifice still stands today.   By the 1980’s, Pastor Grogan had stepped-up his travel from southwest Atlanta to Lawrenceville because of increased spiritual needs in the county. Failing health took a toll on Pastor Grogan. As a result of these circumstances, in December of 1987, along with his endorsement and blessing, Pastor Grogan retired and passed on the mantel of leadership to our present shepherd, Dr. Ronald Daniel Dunnigan. It is fitting to note that he is the great nephew of Rev. L. T. Jones (brother to his maternal grandmother). He officially became Pastor of the church on March 13, 1988.   


Today ~ 1988 - Present: Pastor Ronald D. Dunnigan began to lead God’s flock at Pleasant Hill Baptist Church expanding on the work of Pastor Grogan. In 1999, Pleasant Hill was blessed and relocated to its present location at 797 Moon Road. Being obedient to the Word of God, Pastor Dunnigan continues to prepare God's people for the coming of Jesus Christ through the teachings of the Bible, Bible based education classes, Bible study, and community outreach. The church membership has grown from 100 to 1500 members; 18 associate ministers, 23 deacons, 12 trustees and two Sunday morning worship services. Pastor Dunnigan has initiated youth along with adult Bible study classes, multiple discipleship classes and the International Seminary classes are offered. Many ministries have been established or revitalized under the leadership of Pastor Dunnigan. The ministries shown below indeed reflect that Pleasant Hill Baptist Church is the location “Where the Spirit of God Dwells.” Likewise, the establishment of the Elijah House, the purchase of new buses and musical instruments, the renovation of the fellowship hall and the development of various spiritual retreats demonstrates the forward movement of the congregation. Several positions were filled to meet the increasing needs of the church. A Minister of Music, Minister of Christian Education, Administrative Assistant and other staff were employed.  
Forevermore: The history of Pleasant Hill Baptist Church helps us to understand who we are, where we’ve come from and prepares us for the journey ahead. As we move forward, we are “Growing Together…Building in Faith.” This process has brought us to our new worship center. As we look back and see how far God has brought us over the past 134 years and prepare for what God is getting us ready to receive, we can see that God is the same yesterday, today and forevermore. He hasn’t failed us yet, because He is faithful and just.