Bethel Baptist Church was founded by Reverend Jack Yates on October 16, 1891 at 801 Andrews Street, in Houston Texas. During the period from 1891—1966, Bethel was provided great leadership by several notable pastors, such as Reverend N. P. Pullum, Reverend J. J. Blackshear, Reverend J. E. Knox, Reverend C.C Harper, Reverend J. R. Burdett, and Reverend W. H. Dudley.
After the resignation of Dr. W. H. Dudley, Dr. Melrose Alpha Nimmo was called to the Pastorate. Under the guidance of the Holy Spirit in 1971, Dr. Nimmo and a group of 100 members relocated the church to its current location at 5530 Selinsky Road, in the Crestmont Park section of Houston, Texas. This location has provided Bethel with numerous accomplishments and a constant supply of ministry opportunities.
On July 30, 1978, God blessed the Bethel Family with the liquidation of a $90,000 church mortgage allowing the church to began a building fund for a new sanctuary. On July 5, 1982, Bethel entered into the new sanctuary. On January 3, 1983, the name of the church was changed from Bethel Baptist Church to Bethel Institutional Missionary Baptist Church. Due to the vision of Dr. Nimmo and dedicated members, Bethel was able to dedicate a multi-faceted Gymnatorioum to God and the community on August 31, 1997.
After the death of Dr. Nimmo, Reverend Charles R. Gilford was called to Pastor the Bethel Family from 2000—2007. As the Bethel Family waited for God to send a new leader, Reverend Lee H. Blue, Jr. was elected as the Interim Pastor.
On September 3, 2008, Reverend Murphy D. Simon, Jr. became the eleventh Pastor of Bethel Institutional Missionary Baptist Church. On September 18, 2011 the Gymnatorium was officially named the Dr. Melrose A. Nimmo Center. Under the leadership of the Holy Spirit and Pastor Simon, the vision of Bethel continues to be a place of Salvation, Restoration, and Rejuvenation.