The "seed" that was to become the Mt. Olive Cathedral Christian Methodist Episcopal Church was planted by Reverend G. W. Armour in 1848. As history states, Rev. Armour was an employee of the Jug Factory and his trustworthiness as a worker permitted him the use of the the vacant facility on Sundays. It was here, under these circumstances that he gathered the "little children" to tell them about the love of Jesus.
Our church was founded in 1881 and became an official part of the Christian Methodist Episcopal Church. While there is no exact reference to verify that the name was given at that time, there is indication that nine members officially organized and adopted the name.
In 1886, Mt. Olive was admitted into the Conference with a membership of 15 and Reverend Charles Tyus was the first Conference assigned pastor. As the membership grew, the church moved from the "Jug Factory" to a rented building in 1891, where they paid $2.50 per month for rent; however, there were times when eviction was near. With the assistance of the Conference, a lot was purchased and a frame church was built at 602 E. Georgia Avenue. In 1905, under the leadership of Reverend G. H. Harlee, a beautiful brick church with a pipe organ was built replacing the frame building.
Through the years and a series of pastors, Reverend W. A. Johnson ( a great visionary and dynamic leader) being one of them, dreamed of moving the congregation to our present site on Linden Avenue. However, he died before his vision came true. Listed are the pastors that have served at the present site.
1949 - 1953: Reverend Phillip E. Brooks was assigned to Mt. Olive during the 1949 Annual Conference. Under his leadership, he moved the congreatio to 538 Linden Avenue in 1952 and at that time the offical name was changed to Mt. Olive Cathedral.
1953 - 1962: Reverend Henry C. Bunton was assigned to the pulpit. He was later elected to the Episcopacy.
1962 - 1974: Reverend T. C. Lightfoot, Jr. became the pastor. Rev. Lightfoot was later assigned to Trinity C.M.E. Church, Indianapolis, IN.
1974 - 1982: Reverend Nehemiah Mitchum was appointed Minister in Charge. He was later appointed Presiding Elder of the Memphis District.
1982 - 1986: Reverend Alex A. Chambers became the pastor. Rev. Chambers was subsequently appointed President of Lane College in Jackson, TN.
1986 - 1991: Reverend Julius L. Scipio was appointed the pastor. Rev. Scipio affectionately referred to himself as the "Shepherd of the Flock" of Mt. Olive. He retired and relocated to Pikens, S.C.
1991 - 1994: Reverend Jerry L. Christian became the new pastor. He was later appointed as pastor of Kirkwood C. M. E. Church in Dallas, TX.
1994 - 2001: Reverend John Marshall Gilmore became the Senior Pastor. Rev. Gilmore was later given a special assignment by Biship Graves to organize an alternative ministry.
2001 - 2007: Reverend Stevey M. Wilburn, Sr. was named Pastor in Charge at Mt. Olive. He later moved to Lane Chapel, Forrest City, AR.
2008 - 2012: Reverend Ronald Williams referred to Mt. Olive as "The Cathedral". He later moved to Lane Chapel, Forrest City, AR.
2012: Reverend Charlton Johnson is our current pastor.