In 1866, a small group of Christians banned together in Henry County Georgia in early 1866 to share a mutual love for God and to worship our redeemer. In the spring of that same year, those beloved Christians received two acres of land donated by Mr. Jim Lee. Among the founders of Red Oak United Methodist Church were Joe Hinson and Simon Steward. To conduct worship services, these Christians built a bush arbor, a tent-like structure made from logs and tree branches to shelter them while listening to an arousing sermon. Led by Rev. W. H. Lovelace, the congregation first sat on an area of land that was formerly a part of the Jim Walden Plantation. The congregation, which consisted of only a few faithful saints, purchased two additional acres of land from the Lee Estates.
As the Methodist Church became aware of a shortage of preachers, Red Oak became a part of a four-point charge. The churches in that charge were Red Oak, Andrews Chapel, Bentley Hill and Trinity. During this time of growth, the following pastors served: Rev. Anders, Rev. Jacob Arnold, Rev. M. M. Austin, Rev. Emmon, Rev. Glover, Rev. C.L. Johnson, Rev. Milton, Rev. Peggeas, Rev. J. W. Queens, Rev. J.A. Riches, Rev. I.C. Rucker, Rev. Ruffin, Rev. S.J. Saxon and Rev. J.W. Sawin. In 1920, Red Oak was renovated under the pastorship of Rev. J. W.Tharpe. In 1930, the charge was re-arranged into a three-point circuit. This charge under the leadership of Rev. A.C. Cobb, consisted of Red Oak, Bentley Hill and Trinity. In 1941, Rev. G.P. Wilson was appointed to this Charge. He served until 1948.
During 1948, Rev. E.W. Seay was appointed to what was known as the Stockbridge Charge. The work which had begun under Rev. Wilson was completed under the Pastorage of Rev. Seay. The official records of the South Georgia Methodist Episcopal Conference shows that Rev. Seay served from 1948-1955. However, the records of the Sunday School Department of Red Oak, dating back to the 1950’s show that on February 26, 1956, the class reviewer was Rev. E.W. Seay, Pastor. There were thirty-four students present.
The Sunday School Superintendent was Bro. Robert Slaughter. Those same records were dated from November 13, 1955 through February 3, 1957, showed that on June 24, 1956, the class reviewer was Rev. M.G. Knight, Pastor. The number of pupils was twenty-two. Bro. Slaughter was Superintendent, James Clemons was Secretary, Eddie C. Bryant was acting-secretary and Isaac Lemons was treasurer. The Sunday School records also show that Rev. Sam Johnson was involved in the life and ministry of Red Oak Sunday School from at least January 1, 1953 until May 29, 1955. Red Oak’s efficient Sunday School records reflect where on May 5, 1957, Rev. M.G. Knight first served as Pastor.
Rev. Marchman was the Pastor in November, 1959. He pastored until May 1964, when the conference moved him. During his tenure, a junior pastor by the name of Rev. M. Davis made remarks in Sunday School on November 13, 1960. Under the leadership of Rev. Marchman, complete sets of stained glass windows were installed. On May 17, 1964, Rev. Freddie A. Robinson was appointed to what was now called Jonesboro (Andrew’s Chapel-Red Oak Circuit) He was pastor until June 9, 1968. During Rev. Robinson’s tenure the records reflect that Rev. R.W. Moore was involved in the ministry and mission of Jones-Red Oak. Under Rev. Robinson’s leadership, a renovation program was started. In Dallas, Texas, 1968, the Evangelical United Brethren Church, The Methodist Episcopal South (Blacks) and the Methodist Episcopal North (Whites) came together to form what is now the United Methodist Church. On June 16, 1968, Rev. Harold N. Sharp was appointed to Red Oak for a period of two conference years. He served until May 1970. Rev. Sharp was instrumental in implementing the new programs of the United Methodist Church, of which Red Oak has become a part.