Click any music video below to hear, enjoy and get your praise on!

1796

Mother African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church

Harlem, New York

In the Upper Room

Mahalia Jackson

We've Come


Help support our efforts as a Black Business. Always use Best Black Buys as your portal to Amazon. And tell a friend! Thank You. 

Giving God Our FIRST FRUITS.

Not Leftovers.


Find Out More

Even before George Washington took office as the first president ... Even before the Declaration of Independence was written ... There Was the Black Church!

________________________________________________________________________________________

1780

First Baptist Church
Richmond, Virginia

Originally established as The African Church, The African Episcopal Church of St. Thomas was founded in 1792 by and for persons of African descent to foster personal and religious freedoms and self-determination. The original African Church was an outgrowth of the Free African Society, a mutual aid organization established in 1787 by Absalom Jones, Richard Allen, and others, to assist the African American population in Philadelphia. 
Along with the founders of the Free African Society, all of the African American members joined together in a historic walk out from St. George's Methodist Church in 1792 and began developing plans for the purchase of land and construction of a church home. Affiliation with the Episcopal Church was ratified in 1794. The Reverend Absalom Jones became the first Episcopal priest of African American descent and the first rector of

St. Thomas’ Church.


Amazing Grace

Sung impromptu by OUR President - Barack Obama at the funeral for Reverend Clementa Pinckney, and in honor of ALL those slain at Mother Emanuel Church, Charleston, South Carolina,

June  2015.

Originally established as The African Church, The African Episcopal Church of St. Thomas was founded in 1792 by and for persons of African descent to foster personal and religious freedoms and self-determination. The original African Church was an outgrowth of the Free African Society, a mutual aid organization established in 1787 by Absalom Jones, Richard Allen, and others, to assist the African American population in Philadelphia. 
Along with the founders of the Free African Society, all of the African American members joined together in a historic walk out from St. George's Methodist Church in 1792 and began developing plans for the purchase of land and construction of a church home. Affiliation with the Episcopal Church was ratified in 1794. The Reverend Absalom Jones became the first Episcopal priest of African American descent and the first rector of

St. Thomas’ Church.


1773

First African Baptist Church
Savannah, Georgia

1789

Ezion-Mount Carmel United Methodist Church
Wilmington, Delaware

1790

Historic Pleasant Green Missionary Baptist Church
Lexington, Kentucky

1756

First Baptist Church

Petersburg, Virginia

1792

Mother Bethel African Methodist Episcopal Church

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

The Power of Prayer!


Learn More

I'm Not Tired Yet

Mississippi Mass Choir

______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________


Founded in 1780 by Joshua Morris, First Baptist Church emerged in the aftermath of the Great Awakening religious revival movement (1730s-1770s) that spread across the South.  In contrast to the other churches in Richmond organized during the same time, the First Baptist attracted both black and white congregants in the hundreds.  First Baptist greatly appealed to slave and free-born blacks because of its liturgical message of egalitarianism by stressing the individual’s efforts for rebirth and conversion, rather than infant baptism.  Furthermore, the sermons and messages were accessible to even those who could not read. Under the auspices of the First Baptist, the Richmond African Missionary Society was created in 1815. While the church tried to become interracial, tensions between black and white parishioners did exist. Black Baptists, for example, were required to sit apart from whites in the galleries, and because of limited seating, many black parishioners were physically unable to fit in the church.  And although there were Black deacons, they were scrutinized by their white counterparts and their decisions were often superseded by the latter group.  In 1841, Black parishioners successfully petitioned to separate and utlimately formed what is now First Baptist.


Through It All

Andrae Crouch

    Also Popular In This Issue ...

_______________________________________________________________________________________________________________


First African Baptist Church is recognized as one of the nation's oldest African American Baptist Churches. The original congregation was mostly composed of slaves, and led by a former slave - George Leile, who was ordained in 1775. Leile was assisted by two local enslaved individuals he baptized, David George and Andrew Bryan. After the Revolutionary War began, George Leile and David George escaped to freedom in Canada, but Andrew Bryan stayed with the congregation. On January 20, 1788, at a local barn, First African Baptist Church was recognized officially by the Rev. Abraham Marshall. Andrew Bryan was appointed preacher and sixty-seven people joined the church. By 1794 the congregation was able to erect its first structure, which they named Bryan Street African Baptist Church. By the year 1800, the congregation had grown to seven hundred members. In 1802 Bryan Street Church renamed itself First African Baptist Church.


Precious Memories

Aretha Franklin

James Cleveland

With the oldest African American active congregation west of the Alleghany Mountains, Historic Pleasant Green Missionary Baptist Church was originally founded as part of First African Baptist Church in 1790 by a slave preacher named Peter Dueret. He was known in the community as Brother Captain. Brother Captain died in 1823 and the church was led by a number of ministers who continued to spread the gospel throughout the slave and free African American community in Lexington.  Reverend George W. Dupee pastored the church from 1855 until 1864.  During his tenure the church purchased his freedom for $850.00.  In 1867 under the leadership of Reverend William Morrison Bell, the church served as the first school for African American children in Lexington. While the church has a new edifice, it has been located at the same site since its first building, erected in 1822.

Yes. Our churches date as far back as 1754!  Did you know that?

Here's a look at our churches founded in the 18th Century.

His Eye Is On the Sparrow

Lauryn HIll

Tanya Blount

1785

Bethel African American Methodist Episcopal  Church
Baltimore, Maryland

First Baptist Church of Petersburg, Virginia, was originally known as the First African Baptist Church. It is the oldest continuously operating black church in the state and is “the mother” of churches of numerous Baptist congregations in Virginia.  The evangelical anti-slavery message of the equality of all men who were made in God’s image preached by Baptist missionaries after the Great Awakening in the 1730s and 1740s led to the conversion of large numbers of African slaves and freepersons who then began worshipping together.

They called themselves “The New Lights” and formally  established First African Baptist Church in Lunenburg, Virginia, on the William Byrd III plantation.  Free members of the congregation later moved to Petersburg and changed the name to the First Baptist Church when the Byrd plantation meetinghouse succumbed to flames. In Petersburg, they joined a growing community of free persons of color. They became the largest free black congrregation population in the South by 1860 numbering 3,224 free people. Traditionally shepherded by a black pastor, the church was forced to accept the imposition of a white pastor by the slaveholding community which feared slave insurrections especially after the Nat Turner Revolt in 1831.  After the Civil War the black congregation regained control of the pulpit, and became one of the largest black churches in the nation.

It is the oldest African American church in the state of New York. It was established when members grew disillusioned with increasing segregationist practices within the Methodist church organization.  Ministers James Varick, Christopher Rush, William Miller, and George Galbreath would become bishops and eventually be recognized as the founding members of the African Methodist Episcopal Zion denomination. Originally given the name “African Chapel,” the church later settled on the name “Zion” because of its biblical resonance. Zion Church attracted many black parishioners, and served as the only African American church in New York City until Abyssinian Baptist Church was founded in 1808.Introducing black religious expression while catering to a growing population of black abolitionists, affiliate Zion churches sprang up, prompting the original church to distinguish itself as being the “Mother” church.  In 1848, Zion Church officially changed its name to Mother African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church, having served as a station for the Underground Railroad. Former slave Fredrick Douglass was assisted by Mother Zion in his escape to freedom. Sojourner Truth was a member of the church. After slavery was legally abolished in the state of New York in 1827, Mother Zion continued to be a strong vocal advocate for the abolition of slavery throughout the country. Notables who frequently worshipped at Mother Zion included Langston Hughes, W.E.B. DuBois, Marian Anderson, Roland Hayes, Joe Louis, Madam C.J. Walker, and Rev. Robeson’s younger brother, Paul Robeson.

Can't Give Up Now

Mary, Mary

Old Landmark

Dottie Peoples

Ezion-Mount Carmel United Methodist Church, formerly known as Ezion Methodist Episcopal Church and Mount Carmel Methodist Episcopal Church has the distinction of being the oldest continuously operating black church in the state of Delaware.  Ezion Methodist Episcopal Church was created by the reluctance of white Methodists to allow blacks to worship at their church.  Ezion was founded in 1789, the same year that George Washington was inaugurated as the first President of the United States. The church congregation at the time of its establishment in 1789 was racially integrated with 43 white members and 19 black members. The black congregants, however, were confined to the balcony during church services. Dissatisfied by the restrictions imposed upon them, a number of black parishioners, led by Peter Spencer and William Anderson, formed a separate church which they called the African Union First Colored Methodist Protestant Church.



We've Come This Far By Faith

Donnie McClurkin

WE Have Reason to CELEBRATE!


Read More

1754

Mt. Pisgah African Methodist Episcopal Church (AME)
Elsinboro, New Jersey

Let's Continue to grow awareness of our church legacies! Let's Celebrate YOUR Church History!

Whether you're 100 years or 1 year old !!!  Contact us to profile your church.

It is the oldest continuously operating black church in the United States. The church was officially founded in 1754 by Rueben Cuff, the son of a former slave. When Richard Allen, AME founder, gathered the leaders of more than a dozen black churches in Maryland, New Jersey, and Delaware in 1816 to form the African Methodist Episcopal denomination - Cuff was there. As a result of the creation of the new church denomination, Mt. Pisgah became the first AME church in the State of New Jersey.


This Far By Faith!


1792

The Episcopal Church of St. Thomas
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Shouting John, Hold My Mule,

I Feel Like Praising Him

Shirley Caesar

By Cheryl D. Munson

Editor-In-Chief

Bethel A.M.E. lays claim to the designation as the oldest independent continuously operating African American church in the state of Maryland tracing its origins back to 1785 when a group of African Americans met at the Strawberry Alley meetinghouse. Bethel is one of the three early African American Methodist congregations, which included Lovely Lane United Methodist Church and the Sharp Street United Methodist Episcopal Church.

In 1787 former Lovely Lane members Jacob Fortie and Caleb Hyland founded the “Colored Methodist Society” after disassociating themselves from Lovely Lane, due to issues surrounding black and white members worshiping in the same pews and taking communion together at the alter.  A third group of blacks worshipped at the Sharp Street United Methodist Episcopal Church which housed the African Academy, the first school in Baltimore designed to educate black students. Eventually they withdrew from the Sharp Street congregation as it remained under the leadership of white clergy. On May 9, 1815, Coker and his congregants officially adopted the name “The African Methodist Bethel Society.”

MOSAIC MEDIA LLC  © 2013  |  Privacy Policy

Shackles

Mary, Mary