The History of Mt. Carmel
The history of Mt. Carmel Presbyterian church cannot be fully told without the mention of the active involvement of the Covington First Presbyterian Church. Mt. Carmel Presbyterian Church was founded in 1834 with several members of the Covington church being charter members of the newly formed church. By 1839, the tide had shifted from the Covington church to the Mt. Carmel church so much so that the Covington church made a request to the local Presbytery that they be disbanded and formally merged with Mt. Carmel. That request was honored by the Presbytery. By 1851, the growth of the Presbyterian movement in Tipton County was such that the Rev. D. H. Cummins and the Rev. Peter H. Bland re-organized the Presbyterian church in Covington as the First Presbyterian Church of Covington. As history has a way of repeating itself, 22 members left Mt. Carmel and returned to the Covington church. From 1851 until 1860, Rev. Cummins divided his time between the churches, finally settling upon the Covington Church as his pastorate. During these years, disaster would strike Mt. Carmel. In 1853 the original church building was destroyed by fire. The new church, built in 1854, is the current church building where worship is held today and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. As we have seen, the history of Mt. Carmel has a way of repeating itself. In 2000, due to declining membership and the desire to keep and maintain the church and its grounds, the Mt. Carmel Presbyterian Church formally requested that it be merged with First Presbyterian Church of Covington. Upon approval of the church Sessions and the local Presbytery, all assets were formally transferred to the Covington church. Over the next 16 years, the church remained used sporadically until August 2016 when morning devotionals brought the church into regular Sunday morning usage. Worshipers know that when the 1883 Henry McShane and Co. bell is rung, it is time to gather for worship at "The Mountain"!
The Reverend D. H. Cummins
Rev. Cummins served both the Covington Presbyterian Church as well as the Mt. Carmel Presbyterian Church. His combined service to both churches totaled 34 years at the time of his death.
In the Movies!
Mt. Carmel went to Hollywood! Or better yet, Hollywood came to Mt. Carmel in the 2005 movie, "Walk the Line", the bio-pic of Johnny and June Carter Cash which starred Reese Witherspoon and Joaquin Phoenix.