Our Third Reverend of First Trinity Missionary Baptist Church
In January, 1969, Reverend Dr. F.O. Hockenhull, a native of Detroit, Michigan, embarked on his spiritual journey with God and First Trinity Missionary Baptist Church. Reverend Hockenhull had an extensive spiritual experience: He was the Reverend of Jehovah Missionary Baptist Church in Detroit, president of the Michigan District of the Sunday School and Baptist Training Union Congress, a member of the Inner-City Crime Commission, Chaplain for the Wayne County Jail and Contact Representative for the W.J. Maxey Boys’ Training School before relocating to Flint. As a member of the National Baptist Publishing Board, he had been an Instructor in the Congress for 10 years and later became a member of the Board of Directors.
Dr. Hockenhull attended Arkansas State AM&N College, studied at Wayne State University and the University of Detroit. He was a Graduate of Detroit Bible College and received an Honorary Doctor of Divinity Degree from Arkansas Baptist College on May 26, 1976. He was appointed Second Vice-President of the Great Lakes District Baptist Congress during this time also.
He brought a vision from God for First Trinity and he implemented that vision tirelessly. This man of God was not only a Preacher, but a Teacher, and a Lecturer; he loved God and First Trinity and they loved him in return. Each conversation had with him was “a mini-sermon.”
Under Reverend Hockenhull leadership, God bless First Trinity: the congregation of First Trinity Missionary Baptist Church broke ground for a $250,000 Educational Wing, (on the same site) the first of two units planned for construction, in September 1975. (The church was 49 years old/erected in 1926) The construction was erected on the parking lots to the north and the west of the sanctuary and later the sanctuary was replaced. The new building housed more than 20 classrooms, plus a Fellowship Hall to seat 350 people and a kitchen. On June 3rd, 1989, First Trinity dedicated its new $700,000.00 sanctuary, which seats approximately 650 people. The large contemporary building can be easily seen from I-69, the brick exterior soars over three stories. According to Reverend Hockenhull, “the front has the following representation to the Bible: the three stain windows represent the Trinity and the four brick pillars in between represent the four Gospel writers-Matthew, Mark, Luke and John.” During the 43 years Reverend Hockenhull led God’s people at First Trinity, he made sure the church had a (class A) representation at the local, state and national level.
On October 31, 2010, the mortgage of all the renovations and construction were burned. The Lord kept His Promise: We showed our faithfulness, of Reverend’s teaching of God’s Word, by bringing the Lord our tithes and offerings. We can say the Lord has showed us His faithfulness by blessing it and rewarding us with the burning of the mortgage. We have been bless, as will be future generations of Christians, as they enjoy the fruits of Reverend Hockenhull’s labor of love.
Then on March 16, 2012, after 43 years as First Trinity Reverend, the Lord transitioned him from labor to reward.