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History of The Abyssinian Baptist Church

Our history conveys a rich legacy of leadership and faith, our activist commitment to serving the needs of the local and global community and a dedication to our mission of winning more souls for Christ.

A Renaissance in Harlem


Laying-the-cornerstone-1920Shortly after the start of the cultural movement known as the Harlem Renaissance, Abyssinian purchased lots on West 138th Street between Lenox and Seventh Avenues for the construction of a new church building and community house.

That summer, the church initiated a tithing campaign through which 2,000 members ultimately pledged to give one-tenth of their weekly income to fund construction.