The Mount Olive Baptist Church was founded in 1910 in the Roosevelt Addition, by the late Reverend H.H. Humes. In 1920 Mount Olive was located on East Reno in the seventeen hundred block, known as Rattle Snake Bottom. The Pastor and members erected a small building that was completed and then destroyed in the same year by the big flood. Church was then held under a tree in the summer and at Dunbar Elementary School in the winter. The Pastor, at that time, was the late Reverend Wade Jackson. There were about thirty members.
The church has had numerous Pastors before it was endowed with one of the greatest Pastors in its history…the late Reverend E.R. Neal… a man who had something in common with God, they both loved his son, Jesus Christ. Reverend Neal was a man who was unafraid to step out on God’s word. Reverend Neal served in every capacity of the church, including a tour of duty as custodian. He was called into the gospel ministry and licensed by Mount Olive in 1932. At this time, the church was located at 1508 N.E. 4th Street. Several months later the Reverend E.R. Neal was ordained by Mount Olive to serve as Pastor of the Galilee Baptist Church in Meeker, Oklahoma. After six months of service, Reverend Neal was called back to Mount Olive to serve as Pastor. In November 1951, the church relocated to 1205 North Wisconsin. It remained there until July 6, 1969. While at this location, the Reverend E.R. Booker became Co-Pastor on February 4, 1968. It became evident right away that this was a preacher of power, peace, prayer, perseverance, principle and personality. The world has its champions that participate in team sports of all kinds but the winning team of Reverend Neal and Reverend Booker was unmatched. How could we lose with the wisdom of age and the fire of youth?
Nineteen hundred and sixty-nine marked a milestone in the history of the church. God’s promise is unfailing… “They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint.”
After much waiting and even more praying, a $225,000 edifice was erected on the corner of 27th and Kelly Avenue and became known as the Greater Mount Olive Baptist Church. For this tremendous act of faith we thank Reverend E.R. Neal. Reverend Neal realized, after we do what we can, God will do what we cannot. During the 1970’s, several expansion programs were completed, one of the most important of these being the addition, in 1977 of the E.R. Neal Fellowship Hall. Also, during this time Pastor E.R. Neal was elected as moderator of the East Zion District from 1970-1974.
On April 11, 1982, Pastor Neal graciously retired as pastor after having spent more than forty-eight years of uninterrupted, unadulterated service. Reverend E.R. Booker became the full-time pastor at this time. After having served as pastor for one year, three months, three weeks and four days, our hearts were greatly saddened when Reverend Booker passed away. His memory will live on in our hearts. The church was blessed by the leadership of this man who had been with us for more than fifteen years. Reverend Neal came out of retirement and again became our leader. His constant admonition to the membership was, “children, please keep on loving, praying and working together…that’s the only way you will stay together.”
On October 23, 1983, a preacher from Blossom, Texas who was pastoring in Langston, Oklahoma came to Greater Mount Olive as our guest speaker, his sermon, “A Charge to Keep” (Matthew 25:29). His name? Reverend A. Glenn Woodberry. Then as the spirit would have it, on December 18, 1983, Reverend Woodberry preached for us again. This time, his sermon was “The Night Before Christmas” (Matthew 2:11-12). Sunday, January 29, 1984, at 6:00 p.m., a special meeting was called by Pastor Neal…The agenda was “Calling a Pastor.” This was a new experience for Greater Mount Olive; we had never had to call a pastor before. The vote was unanimous…Reverend A. Glenn Woodberry was chosen by God to lead the flock of the Greater Mount Olive Baptist Church.
Pastor-elect Woodberry’s first sermon on February 26, 1984 was “The Dynamic Church” (Acts 2:41-47). He was officially installed as Pastor on April 15, 1984 by the late Reverend Dewitt Roland, Pastor of Saint Luke Baptist Church, Spencer, Oklahoma.
In 1984 the parking lot was expanded by a bond program that was presented to the members. As the membership continued to grow, a proposed plan for relocation was initiated in 1986. The reality of relocating came about in October of 1987 when on Homecoming (October 25, 1987) members and friends, architectures and builders met to witness the great occasion. Reverend Neal did not do it alone; Reverend Booker is not entirely responsible; Reverend Woodberry did not do it all…it took God, the dedication of all three God-Sent men and a praying church to bring us to where we are today.
Under the divine leadership of Pastor Woodberry, Greater Mount Olive experienced another milestone with the move to our present church at 1020 Northeast 42nd Street on July 30, 1989. At 10 a.m. a motorcade of over one hundred cars departed Northeast 27th and Kelly. A beautiful ribbon cutting ceremony was held at the church prior to our entrance. A week of dedication services were held the following week. Our beautiful church seats over eleven-hundred people, has twelve classrooms, fellowship hall, kitchen, sound room, library, nursery, choir rooms and office complex. Moving to a new large edifice has not dampened our spirit…we continue to sing, shout, praise and thank God…because he brought us…and because he did…To God Be the Glory.
As our membership continued to grow, it was soon evident that parking was not adequate again. In the spring of 1990 the parking lot was expanded. During the next few years growth continued and phase two (Family Life Center) had already begun. In 1993 we had to purchase two new fourteen-passenger vans to accommodate our weekly transportation needs. Early in 1996, Pastor Woodberry announced to the church that the plans for phase two were underway, but while waiting, additional parking was needed. An order was given and a new concrete parking facility was constructed under the direction of one of our members, Deacon Hollis Lloyd. Phase two gave us, over thirteen new classrooms, a gym and fellowship hall with a production stage, expanded kitchen and nursery and an expanded sanctuary. On August 31, 1997, we dedicated our new facility and named it the A.G. Woodberry Family Life Center.
In 2011, as Pastor Woodberry was experiencing declining health, he called for one of his associate ministers to take on more responsibility in assisting him in preaching and teaching. That man was Reverend Ray Douglas. Pastor Douglas came on and followed the mandate given to him by God and the instructions given to him by Pastor Woodberry and began preaching and teaching and encouraging the membership to continue in the path of greatness that God had ordained for them and blessed them with. On September 10, 2011, we were devastated by the news that Pastor Woodberry had been called from labor to reward. The church could have gone into a chaotic tailspin, but we trusted God through our ordeal. During this time Reverend Douglas continued to preach, and teach and encourage us to keep trusting in God.
In March of 2012, the church elected and called Reverend Ray Douglas to be the Senior Pastor of the Church. Pastor Douglas’ preached his first sermon as Pastor-elect on March 18th, 2012 entitled “A Unified Church” from 1 Corinthians 1:10. He was officially installed by Dr. Major Jemison of the Saint John Baptist Church of Oklahoma City on May 6, 2012. Today, Pastor Douglas continues to encourage us to trust God, and to strive to become who and what God has called us to be.
We have come a long way by the grace of our Almighty God, but we still have a long way to go. Therefore we are striving to do the Lord’s will in building monuments and lives so that our children will be able to look at our present and gain strength for their future. When their future becomes their present they will be able to look at our past and remember the great things that God has done.
At the Greater Mount Olive Baptist Church, we believe in equipping the believer to do whatever God has called them to do. Here we want to help you discover and develop the unique gift that God has given you. Every member is a minister in the sense that God has given us all a job to do.