On September 30, 1870, 30 official messengers gathered in Damascus Baptist Church in the Phoenix Community of what was the Abbeville County, and organized the Abbeville Baptist Association. They adopted a constitution and stated the object of the Association in these words: “The object of this Association shall be the extension of Christ’s kingdom by the promotion of piety in the churches and by the diffusion of the knowledge of salvation.” One hundred and thirty-three years later, the Association has grown from 13 churches to 47. These 47 churches are in 3 counties: Abbeville, Greenwood, and McCormick.
Forward to today, on October 17, 2005 at the 135th Abbeville Baptist Association’s annual meeting it was voted to change the name of the association. The new name becoming the Lakelands Baptist Association. It is more descriptive of our location; Abbeville County has split into three counties (Abbeville, Greenwood, and McCormick) since the 1870’s. The messengers felt the name included the three counties known throughout the area as the Lakelands.