Oak Grove Baptist Church
Oak Grove Baptist Church was founded in 1873. Its original name was St. Ross Baptist Church which was housed in a log cabin. Some of its first members were out of First Mount Zion Baptist Church, Dumfries, Virginia. In 1879, a group of concerned parents held a meeting to strive for the advancement of their children's education resulting in the Oak Grove School. At that time, it was the first school for African Americans. Its educators were Caucasians. The current location, 414 Decatur Road, Stafford, Virginia is the fourth edifice. It was erected in 1947 under the leadership of Rev. C.D. Johnson of Washington, DC.
Oak Grove Baptist Church became a historical landmark in 2016, recorded as the fourth oldest African American Church in Stafford County.
Widewater native, Palmer Hayden (1890-1973), a member of Oak Grove Baptist Church was a renowned Renaissance artist. One of his paintings is proudly displayed in our sanctuary. Palmer Hayden's family (the Jackson Family) are lifelong members of Oak Grove.
Oak Grove Baptist Church has been led by ministers who all have made outstanding contributions to the growth and mission of the church. Rev. Jacob Bird, Rev. Charles Gibson (29 years), Rev. Walter Porter, Rev. James Garfield, Rev. V.B. Johnson, Rev. Junious Smith, Rev. Robert Ford (14 years), Rev. D. Johnson, Rev. John Cross (6 years/also served as pastor of the 16th Street Baptist Church, Birmingham, Al where four little black girls were killed in the 1963 bombing), Rev. Carl M. Patterson (5 years), Rev. Edward Foster (23 years), Rev. Robert E. Bumbrey, Sr. (10 years), Rev. Granville O. Butler (6 years), Rev. Bobby Daniels (6 years).
Pastor Martin L. Smith was installed as our new undershepherd on October 28, 2017. He now holds the mantle for Christ, leading us towards our next journey as we"Believe God & Trust the Process"
Jeremiah 29:11. Under his leadership the Praise Dance Ministry, Puppet Ministry and the Praise Team have been revitalized and Children's Church initiated. The choir loft has been renovated by which the Restoration Committee was formed. A new handicap ramp was built, new hymnals and bibles were purchased, our website, Instagram and Facebook page was reconstructed, new lightening in the sanctuary and a new logo designed. Our first leadership conference was conducted by Pastor Smith in January 2018. Our Media Team was established and monitors, new cameras and audio system installed in 2021-2022. Our Food Pantry began serving the community in partnership with area churches in 2020. The Church Constitution was revised in 2020.We began a partnership with Howard University School of Divinity in 2023 internship program.
God called Rev. Martin L. Smith to Oak Grove Baptist Church and has imparted a ministry into his vessel to encourage people. He believes that regardless of your socioeconomic or educational background, "We are more than what we see in the mirror." Our lives are our testimony in which we should live to make a difference. We are to experience God's best. As we rely on the word of God, we will embrace our community and the surrounding areas we serve. At Oak Grove Baptist Church, we desire to seek, reach and teach everyone about the love of God. We believe this will be accomplished by operating in the spirit of excellence as we utilize everyone's gift. Hebrew 10:23-24
On September 24, 2022 Pastor Smith Installed Julius Scroggins into the Trustee Ministry, Consecrated Janet Brown Page and ordained Felton Page into the Diaconate Ministry.