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  • Writer's pictureKaren Brittingham-Edmond

Seacoast Missionary Baptist Association 125th Anniversary On October 28, 2023 Was Fabulous!

November 3, 2023

Rev. Calvin Berry, Rev. Dr. Amelda Lee, Rev. Justin Hayward, Rev. Ruth Scott, Rev. Hosie Scott, Rev. Bernard Oates, Rev. Dr. William Greene, Rev. Brandon Jaye, Rev. Dr. Gary Brandon, Rev. Edmond Lee, Rev. Kenneth McGhee, plus one more honoree. At Mount Pisgah Baptist Temple of Asbury Park, New Jersey Picture Source E.N.T.V.L.L.C. Oct 28, 2023


Saturday, October 28, 2023, marked the Seacoast Missionary Baptist Association's 125th Anniversary. The Seacoast Missionary Baptist Association is the oldest Association in the General Baptist Convention of New Jersey. Local communities, church affiliates, and alums came out in large numbers. The current Moderator of the Seacoast Missionary Baptist Association is Rev. Dr. Gary Brandon, Pastor of Mount Pisgah Baptist Temple of Asbury Park, New Jersey, who also hosted the event! The worship leader for the 125th celebratory event was Rev. Dr. Kenneth McGhee Jr. Close to 150 people gathered to honor the occasion. The scripture reading was shared by Minister Leta Brandon, Welcome by Rev Edmond Lee of Mt. Carmel Baptist Church of Neptune Twp. Minister Karen Paden of Macedonia Baptist Church of Lakehurst, NJ, shared Seacoast Missionary Baptist Association history. Moreover, a special award was granted by the Seacoast Missionary Baptist Association in honor of Rev Robert Perkins for his 51 years of service at Emanuel Baptist Church located in Tinton Falls, New Jersey, where the current presiding pastor is Rev Benjamin Davis.


Macedonia Baptist Church Choir moving with the spirit. With guest speaker Rev. Brandon Jaye sitting ctr, Dr. Gary Brandon, Pastor of Mount Pisgah Baptist Temple, w/hands together to the (R) and Rev. Kenneth McGhee to his (L)

Picture Source E.N.T.V.L.L.C. Oct 28, 2023


The spirit at the Seacoast Missionary Baptist Association celebration was one of joy and reflection. Macedonia Baptist Church Choir sang the hymn, "I Will Sing Of The Goodness Of God." The Emanuel Baptist Church of Tinton Falls Children Liturgical Dancers shared in the worship experience with a graceful plus foot stomping dance that warmed and moved the hearts of on-looking believers. Various local pastors participated in this distinctive event, honoring those who came before them and the impactful and significant work that the Seacoast Missionary Baptist Association conducted as both ministers plus advocates for preserving the Black family and preaching the gospel.


Emanuel Baptist Church of Tinton Falls Children Liturgical Dancers With Pastor McGhee smiling proudly with Pastor Gary Brandon Picture Source E.N.T.V.L.L.C. Oct 28, 2023


Leadership touched on the fact that the Seacoast Missionary Baptist Association directly addressed the unfair treatment of Black citizens per the original mission statement from 1898, as well as in the areas of equal access to housing in the 1960s during the Civil Rights Movement. Seacoast Missionary Baptist Association continues to advocate on behalf of Black citizens and their children who, on a side note, have become the number one homeless population again in direct correlation to New Jersey's Sanctuary City, plus HUD-enforced Jim Crow Housing Policies. That systematically blocks primarily Black citizens from federal affordable housing per bias credit checks plus homeownership impediments. Both policies have uniquely turned New Jersey cities, towns, and villages that were primarily Black citizens voting districts into Hispanic majority population plus voting block. https://newjerseymonitor.com/2022/10/05/annual-count-finds-n-j-homelessness-inching-up-with-racial-disparities-persisting/

Another drawback of N.J. Sanctuary State policies ramification coupled with debtor prison laws for non-violent, non-drug-related offenses over the last 25 years has systematically decreased historic Black churches congregant attendance plus Black businesses that once thrived in New Jersey that included pharmacies, gas stations, car dealerships, restaurants, jewelers, barbara shops, dance clubs etc., etc into majority Brown and Hispanic communities with Spanish and Asian businesses ascendancy chain of circumstances. As more of the N.J. State

  • Mayors

  • Democrats and

  • Republican politicians

Support or partnership with Central America's Sanctuary Cities and State aspirations initiated in 1996. But thankfully, despite the fallout, Black churches and institutions remain. Irrespective of the fact that New Jersey still owes Black citizens reparations to this day. https://www.connellfoley.com/media/publication/14_Trembly_Critchley_Historical%20Review%20Current%20Status%20and%20Legal.pdf


The New Jersey Institute produced the video: “Say The Word: Reparations in New Jersey,” narrated by Newark Mayor Ras Baraka. To view the video, click the links below


An excellent and brief history of the Seacoast Missionary Baptist Association was provided by Minister Karen Paden of Macedonia Baptist Church Lakehurst, which stated:


"A group of Ministers came together on Thursday, April 21, 1898, to organize the Seacoast Missionary Baptist Association. These Ministers were: Rev. William H. Wallace of Mt. Moriah Baptist Church (presently, Mt. Pisgah Baptist Temple) in Asbury Park, NJ; Rev. Peter T. Morris of First Baptist Church in Belmar, Rev. D. D. Wall of Asbury Park and Rev.

M. R. Mathews of Lakewood. The Seacoast Missionary Baptist Association was organized two years after Plessey versus Ferguson (which was the decision by the U.S. Supreme Court that permitted States to institute racially separate public accommodations despite the Constitution’s Fourteenth Amendment). Therefore, the Seacoast Association came into existence, confronting racism and discrimination. For example, there was rampant discrimination in housing during the sixties. Most of the twenty-seven to thirty-two churches that were active in the Seacoast Association is over one hundred years old. Seacoast is the

oldest Association in the General Baptist Convention of New Jersey." (*Implies "Deceased")


Names of Seacoast Moderator's Terms

*Rev. William H. Wallace

1898-1903

*Rev. Peter T. Morris

1903-1912

*Rev. Robert J. Bouldin

1912-1918

*Rev. J.W. Ashby

1918-1923

*Rev. Edward D. Crawley

1923-1945

*Rev. Calvin S. Marshall

1945-1957

*Rev. Cornelius P. Williams

1957-1961

*Rev. Vassie L. Peek, Sr.

1961-1963

*Rev. Samuel M. Pinkston

1963-1965

*Rev. Tillman M. Jones

1965-1969

*Rev. Caleb E. Oates

1969-1973

*Rev. Dr. Verner R. Matthews

1973-1977

*Rev. Dr. Henry P. Davis Jr.

1977-1981

*Rev. Dr. Albert C. Clayton

1981-1985

*Rev. Dr. Henry P Davis, Jr.

1985-1989

* Rev. Rufus Monroe, Sr.

1989-1993

*Rev. William L. Powell

1993-1995

*Rev. Gerald A. Schenck, Sr.

1995-1998

*Rev. Dr. Dwight C. Northington

1998-2002

*Rev. Dr. Henry P. Davis Jr.

2002-2006

Servant Rev. Dr. Edward D. Harper

2006-2010

Rev. Alexander Brown

2010-2014

Rev. Bernard D. Oates

2014-2016

Rev. James Brown

2016-2021

Rev. Dr. Gary Brandon

2021-


At the end of the day, the Seacoast Missionary Baptist Association 125th Anniversary was a tremendous success. Pastor Brandon Jaye of the Grace Deliverance Baptist Church of Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, emphasized the need for the Black church of New Jersey to return to the original Seacoast Missionary Baptist Association mission statement of 1898 to save souls from the stumbling block of systematic racism that desires to shift our people as wheat. The Seacoast Missionary Baptist Association continues to develop young adult and youth leaders through their character and faith-building summer enrichment tutelage dubbed "Summer Assembly." Summer Assembly is a wholesome enrichment program that teaches students about the proud lineage of Black history connected to the positive development of the Black Church in America. It also emphasizes the rich benefits of allowing Jesus Christ to be their Lord and Savior; moreover, the event has historically provided a safe place where young Afro-American children can socialize and build long-lasting friendships. The Seacoast Missionary Baptist Association "Summer Assembly" empowers attendees with the principles of prayer and faith, plus a disciplined lifestyle that can benefit young adults entering adulthood in a hostile environment while being young, Black, and talented in America. To support or learn more about The Seacoast Missionary Baptist Association Summer Assembly, please click the link to their Facebook Page at: https://www.facebook.com/p/Seacoast-Missionary-Baptist-Association-100064883792413/


Thanks for reading this article published by the relaunched Echo. New Jersey's oldest Black-owned newspaper since 1904.

Please enjoy Jahiem's Instrumental Version of "Fabulous"

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