Brookland Union Baptist Church History
Rev. Earl L. Harrison, a former pastor of the historic Shiloh Baptist Church of Washington, DC, had a dream in the early 1940s that people of color would have a place to worship in the Brookland area of Northeast Washington. Because more and more Negro families were moving into this area, his primary concern was that children would have a place where they could go to Sunday school and be fed spiritually.
An associate of Rev. Harrison, Rev. Joseph A. Miles, Sr., fulfilled Rev. Harrison’s dream on November 11, 1945, by transforming a vacant house into a place of worship. This vacant house was called Brookland Union Baptist Church (BUBC) and by 1947, the founding members under Pastor Miles’ leadership, petitioned to make Brookland Union official. By 1965, a larger edifice was completed and other predominantly Black churches in the Brookland community followed as the need demanded.
In September 1987, Pastor Miles transitioned to his heavenly home. Rev. Samuel R. Wilson, who served as Assistant Pastor, became the second pastor in 1989. In August 1992, the late Rev. Bennie Johnson, assistant to Pastor Wilson, became the interim pastor, who was followed by Rev. Joseph A. Fobbs as the elected pastor in 1995. In 2002, Rev. Dr. C. J. Malloy, Jr. (retiree) became pastor of BUBC; the late Rev. Dr. Arie L. Mangrum followed as interim pastor in February 2008. God’s providence brought to the fold, a shepherd, designated as the fifth pastoral servant leader of BUBC. The membership searched and elected the Reverend Marcellous D. Ridgeway in May 2009. As an honorable child of God whose leadership as a former chosen vessel began his service to BUBC, we were assured that Pastor Ridgeway would come forth with the Holy Spirit to teach, preach, counsel the pure at heart and deliver the Word of our Savior.
We celebrate the wonders of God’s love by looking forward, forgetting yesterday (Isaiah 43:18-19). While the knob is on your side of the door, open it and let God come within. He will do a new thing; as we stand on the promises of Christ our Savior.