Our History

"New Dimensions in Christianity"

This church is founded on the belief and practice based on the words of Jesus, "Whosoever will, let him come," without reverence or regard to appearance, color, race, dress, knowledge, age, or economic status. The concerns of The Church of the Redeemer are focused on the redemption of the society in which we live. Therefore, whether rich or poor, learned or unlearned, old or young, black or white, kept or unkept, clean or dirty, this Church is open to all people.

Mission Statement
The Church of the Redeemer is a place to worship, a place devoted to community activities and affairs; and a place to spiritually, morally, educationally, socially, economically, and politically embrace and enrich the total life of a man as taught by Jesus Christ

On Friday, September 30, 1966, Reverend Kirkland and nine met at the home of Mr. Henry Faison, in the 5400 Block of Sansom Street.  The Church of the Redeemer Baptist was organized and the Reverend Joseph T. Kirkland was our elected pastor.
                                                        

1903 Federal Street                      1900 Annin Street                          1440 S. 24th Street

The first worship service was held on Sunday, October 2, 1966 at 1903 Federal Street. Services were held there until we were able to share the facilities of the Grace UAME Church at 19th and Annin Streets on May 7, 1967.

On November 29, 1967, the congregation relocated to the present site, 1440 South 24th St.
Settlement was made toward purchasing the church on April 26, 1968. The purchase price was $26,000 and the church was able to pay $13, 000 of the purchase price.

During the first summer at this location, the church embarked upon a summer program for the children of the church and the community. The children were exposed to the work of the church through arts and crafts, recreation, trips, films and Christian love, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. five (5) days a week.

During the year of 1967, the church acquired seven (7) properties that were renovated, without the aid of government assistance, for the purpose of helping to improve the community and to provide homes for families in need. Four more additional properties were purchased and renovated in the years from 1975-1980.

The Church of the Redeemer Federal Credit Union was organized in May 1969.  The aim of the Credit Union was to provide a means of savings for church members and their families with a rate of interest comfortable to any bank and to extend loans at the interest rate of 11% per month on the unpaid balance. 

During the ninth year, the indebtedness was cleared because of the consistent weekly contributions of the members. On February 29, 1976, at 3:30 P. M., the church held a mortgage burning ceremony that was officiated by Reverend William Banks, Pastor of Union Baptist Church.

In 1980, the church began to sow seeds to launch a project to build a Christian Education Center to be located on Dickinson Street between the fourteen hundred blocks of South Taylor and Ringgold Streets.

Rev. Kirkland went to be with the Lord on March 22, 1982.

The Reverend Gilbert G. Campbell Jr. became the second Pastor of the Church of the Redeemer Baptist in March of 1983. Under his leadership an extensive building program was initiated. Reverend Campbell built upon the church’s vision to build a Christian Education Center by having another set of blueprints drawn. Reverend Campbell, Jr. pastored until October of 1988.

In October of 1988, The Reverend Theodore Jones was selected to be the first Interim Pastor. He remained interim Pastor until March of 1989.

The Reverend Dr. Tyrone E. Kilgoe became the third pastor of the Church of the Redeemer Baptist in 1989. He quickly implemented spiritual changes and ministries.  He was very concerned about youth involvement in the church.  He implemented more youth-focused ministerial activities and worship services. He pastored the church until 1991.

In 1992, The Reverend Wayne E. Croft was elected as the second Interim Pastor.

On June 19, 1993, Reverend Wayne E. Croft became the fourth elected pastor of the Church of the Redeemer Baptist. Pastor Croft has directed the development of numerous ministries since his calling to the Church of the Redeemer Baptist.

In November 1999, The Redeemer Renaissance Community Development Corporation (RRCDC) is a non-profit 501 (c) 3 faith-based organization founded by Reverend Wayne E. Croft, Sr.  The original purpose of the organization was to address the blighted conditions within the Point Breeze community of South Philadelphia.  The organization later expanded its mission to revitalize, rejuvenate, empower and educate the Point Breeze community in the areas of housing and socio-economic development.

On May 7, 2000, a ground breaking ceremony was held to erect the Christian Education Center. On Sunday, October 7, 2001, The Church of the Redeemer Baptist held the dedication and ribbon cutting ceremony of the newly erected Redeemer Christian Life & Education Center.

The center houses the administration offices, classrooms, banquet facility, daycares; computer lab, Redeemer Institute of Christian Education (RICE) and the Redeemer Renaissance Community Development Corporation (RRCDC). The center is also used to provide meeting spaces for community meetings and is a rental facility for outside weddings, community celebration and community forums.

The first female Deacons were ordained to serve the congregation by Reverend Dr. Wayne E. Croft, Sr.

In June of 2012, Reverend Wayne E. Croft, resigned to pastor St. Paul Baptist Church in West Chester, PA.
 
Reverend Hughes began as the first interim preacher on January 6, 2013.  His sermon was based on Numbers: 13.  His sermon was entitled “I will go, if I have to go by myself”. 

On July 29, 2013, Reverend Omari K. Hughes, became the third elected Interim Pastor.

On October 28, 2013, The Reverend Omari K. Hughes, became the fifth elected Pastor of The Church of the Redeemer Baptist.

Over the years, The Church of the Redeemer Baptist has added to the fold by licensing and ordaining Ministers and Pastors of the gospel.

  • Minister Gregory Holston, a son of the church, was the first minister to be licensed to preach the gospel in March 1996.
  • Reverend John A. Croft was the first minister to be ordained at the church in March 1997 and was appointed the first Assistant Pastor on November 1999.
  •  Reverend Tobin Young was ordained and became the church’s second Assistant Pastor on December 3, 2003.
  • Reverend Wayne E. Croft, Sr. later licensed and ordained Reverend Jermaine T. Heath on December 12, 2001, who went to Pastor St. Paul’s Chapel Baptist Church, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19146.
  • Minister Carmena Pyfrom, the first woman minister was licensed and ordained by Reverend Dr. Wayne E. Croft, Sr., at the church on September 26, 2004 and ordained on February 21, 2011.
  •  Reverend Dr. Wayne E. Croft, Sr. licensed Minister B. Michelle Horton on June 30, 2007.
  • On February 21, 2011, Redeemer was the first church in Pennsylvania Baptist Association’s history to ordain three Reverends at one time, The Reverends Marlon Milner, Carmena Pyfrom and Semaj Van Zandt.


The church is always open for any community group or organization that is working for the betterment of mankind.

Through God’s grace and mercy, yesterday brought us to today, and with continued faith, today will take us to tomorrow and “It does not yet appear what we shall be.”

 “But continue the things that thou hast learned and hast been assured of, knowing of whom thou last learned them.” II Timothy 3:14.