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Our History

The Mother African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church is recognized as the oldest Black church in New York State. Founded in 1796 and charted in 1799 by Ministers James Varick, Christopher Rush, William Miller, and George Galbreath, introduced Black religious expression while catering to a growing population of Black abolitionists. After affiliate Zion churches started to open, the original church began to distinguish itself as the "Mother" church. Mother Zion served as a stop along the Underground Railroad and was referred to as a "Freedom Church" for its active participation in Black social activism.


The present Neo-Gothic church that was completed in 1925 was a a haven for Black artists and intellectuals during the Harlem Renaissance and an amphitheater for civil rights activism during the 1950s and ‘60s. During the COVID-19 Global Pandemic, the Church was forced to close its doors but was able to continue serving the educational, social, and health care needs of the community through sharing Sunday services on YouTube. Since welcoming back our members in person on March 13, 2022, we continue to engage with the community through our Youtube, Facebook, and Instagram channels and through outreach abroad. 


Our Beliefs

Mother A.M.E. Zion Church professes the historical faith in God, who by Himself - outpouring, was manifest incarnate in Jesus Christ for our salvation. By God's grace and the power of His Holy Spirit all believers become the new humanity. The incarnation having reached its completion in Jesus, who is the Christ, is continuing in the Church and is overcoming the calamity of calamity of the human predicament. We strive in hope that the Church will grow from sinful existence through purification to oneness with God. Our Heritage in doctrine and our present theological task demand that we renew our faith and understanding of the love of God, our Father, and the Lordship of His Son, Jesus. We believe that all who have faith in Him will be empowered and invigorated by the Holy Spirit to risk all for the reconciling work and fulfillment of the Kingdom of God.


Our Mission

The mission of The Mother African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church is to increase our love for God and to help meet the needs of mankind by, "Loving God with all our heart, with all our soul, and with our entire mind, and to love our neighbors as ourselves." Implicit in this statement is the belief that the church should have a positive relationship with humankind horizontally. We also share the mission of His Son Jesus Christ, in "healing the sick, helping the blind to receive sight, the lame to walk, the leper to be cleansed, the deaf to hear, the dead to be raised, and the poor to have the Good News preached to them." - Luke 4:18. We actualize this mission by praising God, by being obedient to the demands of the Gospel, and by telling the story of God's gracious acts in creating and redeeming the world, by inviting persons to commit their lives to Jesus Christ, and by serving as ministers of God's liberating and reconciling grace.

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