Our History

Trinity Baptist Church's genealogy goes back many generations. Trinity was a merger of Sumner Avenue Baptist Church and Bedford Heights Baptist Church.

Sumner Avenue Baptist Church, originally Herkimer Street Baptist Church, was organized in 1872. The name was changed when a new building was built on Sumner Avenue and Decatur Street. On March 21,1886, three Baptist Churches, Washington Avenue, Marcy Avenue and Herkimer Street met to consider a Baptist Mission. From this, Bedford Heights Baptist Church began. For over a year it met in a home at 107 Bergen Street while its building was being constructed the corner of Bergen Street and Rogers Avenue. It has been said that each Sunday morning the Sunday School teachers waited for the trolley that would bring their students. Miss Emily Renz was the first member to be baptized in the new church. She lived long and served the church well.

In April 1922, the merger of Bedford Heights and Sumner Avenue Baptist Churches took place. The name of the new church was TRINITY BAPTIST CHURCH. On October 4, 1922, Trinity held its first annual meeting. Both merged churches sold their respective holdings and purchased property on 179 New York Avenue. The existing house facing the street was eventually moved back and turned to its side to become the Parish House. This was done to make room for the new sanctuary. The cornerstone for the new edifice was laid December 18, 1926 and dedicated in the fall of 1927. We have used the year that the cornerstone was laid as the demarcation date from which the Church's anniversary is determined.

When Greene Avenue Baptist Church sold its building, a large group of its members joined the Trinity congregation in June 1950.

Trinity is a member of the American Baptist Churches of Metropolitan New York and Brooklyn Council of Churches.

Trinity had been an all caucasian church until the early 1950's. Some of the first Black members joined Trinity within that decade. One family who joined the church at that time are still active members. As African American and Caribbean populations increased, so did the proportion of these ethnicities in the Trinity congregation. Trinity called its first black pastor in 1968, the Rev. Richard Boddie, who was unfortunately called home to be with the Lord after a very short time. Our next pastor, the Rev. Osborne E. Scott was appointed the position of pastor in 1976. He served the congregation the congregation for nearly thirty years before he was called home. Rev. Scott was eulogized by Dr. Gardner C. Taylor, a close friend, in November 1997.

During this time Trinity had interim pastors who served the church well until it could find a new Pastor. The Rev. T. Arnold Nance served as the Interim Pastor of the church for three years. In 2001 the church appointed Rev. Dr. Glenmore Bembry Jr. as its next Pastor.

Trinity, like most churches has had its difficult times as well as its good times. This church has been devastated by two fires, one in 1971 and another in 1998. Both were very trying events, but thanks be to God the sanctuary was spared both times. Following these set backs the church has moved forward with many improvements to the physical structure and with a renewed determination to go forward and spread the gospel of Jesus Christ.

The organizational structure of Trinity consists of multiple boards, ministries and committees. These boards include the Trustee Board, Deacon Board, Deaconess Board, the Board of Christian Education and the Ushers Board. Some of the ministries and committees are as follows: Music Ministry, Youth Ministry, Pastor's Aid MInistry, Computer Learning Skills Ministry, Anniversary Committee, Pastoral Relations Committee. One of the most longstanding and influential organizations in the church is the Women's Benevolent Circle.

We remember fondly former members who loved Trinity and labored long and hard for this church. Their names are too numerous to mention and many of them are no longer with us because of death, or relocation, but they remain in our hearts and will always be remembered for what they did here. There are, however, four members who came through this church, whom we are extremely proud of. They became ministers of the gospel and they are: Rev. James Missick, Rev. Glen Missick, the late Rev. Joseph C. Burton and Rev. Evelyn Jackson-Levine.

Pastors who have served this church well, in addition to the before mentioned, have been Rev. George F. Eadie, Rev. Charles A. Schweikert, Rev. Joseph I. Chapman, Rev. Ralph T. Osborne, Rev. Donald J. Simmons, Rev. Eugene H. Stewart, Rev. Nicholas Lasko and Rev. Henry M. Warren III. We were blessed to have had Rev. Kenneth Peyton and Rev. T. Arnold Nance to lead us during the illness and after the death of Rev. Scott. Our present pastor Rev. Dr. Glenmore Bembry Jr. has led this church since 2001 and is leading us into a new, positive and focused direction towards the future. Under his leadership the church experienced spiritual growth, focusing upon evangelism and discipleship. In addition, a new diversified Music Ministry, Youth Ministry, Computer Learning Skills Ministry, Health Ministry, Hiv-Aids education and many other ministries are helping the church experience growth and change.

The Trinity congregation is a cross section of all ages, ethnicities and cultural backgrounds, yet remains young in spirit. There is family stability, love and concern for one another. God has richly blessed Trinity and this church family. May we who are privileged to be a part of the present congregation, strive to carry on the legacy of those who went before us, as we show the love of Jesus Christ among ourselves and to the community and to the world.

Pastor Glenmore Bembry

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Trinity Baptist Church
179 New York Avenue, Brooklyn, New York, 11216
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