Ocean City Baptist Church was formed in 1898 when a pastor and 28 members from an area church recognized the need for a ministry in Ocean City (then called Peck’s Beach). The first church met on Asbury Avenue between 8th and 9th Street and was known as Immanuel Baptist Church.
The church later moved its meeting place to a tent on the corner of 9th Street and Wesley Avenue; then, in April of 1922, it was moved to 10th and Wesley. It was there that the church found its permanent location. Work on the current building was begun in 1926 and was finished in 1927. Shortly thereafter, the name was changed to First Baptist Church. In 1933, the church was reorganized and incorporated as Ocean City Baptist Church.
As the church grew, so did its desire to minister beyond its immediate reach and to see Christ proclaimed around the world. With that goal in mind, in 1955 the church began a missionary organization known as the Great Commission Fellowship. Through this Fellowship, missionaries have been sent out and ministries have been supported both in this country and around the world.
Yet Ocean City Baptist found that one of the biggest mission fields was right out its back door. Each year, thousands of tourists were flocking to the beaches and boardwalk of Ocean City. So the church began a Summer Bible Conference that featured daily services throughout the summer season. These conferences featured outstanding Bible teachers and musicians. Many times families would plan their vacations to OceanCity based upon who the Bible teacher would be that week. While the Summer Bible Conference no longer exists, something similar now takes place each September at the Ocean City Bible Conference.
The church has also reached out to tourists by inviting Campus Crusade for Christ students to come each summer and share the gospel with people on the boardwalk. Currently, Ocean City Baptist hosts over 100 college students from around the country that come each summer to share their faith in Jesus Christ.
With sound Bible preaching, an evangelistic emphasis, and a heart for missions, Ocean City Baptist has stood as a lighthouse of truth to South Jersey and beyond. Its purpose has been, and always will be, to glorify God through faithfully proclaiming His Word.
These historical photos and documents reveal some of the rich legacy of Ocean City Baptist Church.