In the year 1862, in the rural precinct of Blackwater, a small community located in the Southern sector of Princess Anne County, VA, a prayer band of followers of Christ journeyed from home to home to hold prayer meetings. As time passed, the group decided that they wanted a designated place in which to worship. They obtained a parcel of land, cut bushes and built a small bush shelter in which to worship. The Bush Shelter was surrounded by a grove of oaks, from which the Church derived its name, Oak Grove. Families such as the Hodges, the Cuffee's, the Reid's and the Humphries were among the early founders. In 1865, Rev. John Bass became Pastor of the Bush Shelter. Under the leadership of Rev. Bass the members went to work and built a small, but permanent structure. Rev. Bass served as Pastor for thirteen years and was then called into another field of labor. For the next eighteen years, Rev. J.V. Roach taught, sang, prayed and preached the word of God until his time as Pastor expired.
At the turn of the Century without a Pastor, the Church began to divide. For the next eighteen years the Rev. R. R. Cartwright pastored the church, and the church's name Old Oak Grove became official. During Rev. Cartwright's tenure the church flourished and grew. Rev. Cartwright strongly encouraged parents to invest in their children's education and some were sent to high school and college. For a time the church was again without a pastor until the Rev. W.G. Alexander came on the scene in 1920, and he served until 1928. During the next thirteen years, Rev. C. F. Griffin was called to pastor. During his tenure the church was remodeled and various rooms were added. Due to poor finances, the church was only able to have service once a month. Knowing the church's financial situation, Rev. Griffin agreed to preach on the Second Sunday, free of charge. The next year services were held twice a month, and Rev. Griffin was able to be paid for both services.
On September 14, 1958, ground was broken for the New Oak Grove Baptist Church, which was built just behind the old church building. On October 27, 1962, Rev. Griffin was called home to be with Lord, and after a couple of years Rev. Horace Moore was called to pastor. On July 4, 1964, the members entered the newly built church building. On Sunday, May 23, 1976 following the morning worship service, Rev. Moore was called home to be with the Lord. Once again, the church was left without a Pastor for a period of two and a half years. In December of 1978, the Lord sent Dr. Olleo L. Cromwell II as the under shepherd of the flock. Under his leadership the church grew spiritually ally and physically, and many things were accomplished under his leadership. On September 27, 1998 Rev. Cromwell resigned as Pastor, and we were once again left without a shepherd. Holding on to a hope of God's continued blessings towards us, the church continued to flourish. With the aid of our Associate Ministers, Rev. Tyrone Johnson and Dr. Anthony B. Rodgers who did an excellent job in carrying out the ministerial duties of the church, New Oak Grove continued on, striving to keep the faith alive.
In November of 1999 the Lord sent to us Rev. Samuel K. Shaw III, and on January 16, 2000 he was installed as Pastor of New Oak Grove Baptist Church. Under his leadership, the church continued to mature spiritually, and other services and courses of studies such as Preparing For Ministry and New Members classes were put into place to further develop the body for Christian discipleship. During Rev. Shaw's tenure the body embraced the youth of the church, nurturing a more involved youth ministry. A Youth Fellowship service on the third Sunday of each month and Wednesday Youth Bible Study was established, and outlets for creative ministry were formed through a praise dance ministry for the young girls and a mime ministry for the young males. A greater focus was also initiated on behalf of our Seniors, wherein the celebration of Grandparents Day was heightened, eventually leading to an Annual Seniors Luncheon in September of each year. On February 26, 2006 Rev. Shaw resigned as pastor. The Diaconate Ministry, with the assistance of our Ministerial Staff continued to care for and to meet the needs of the body of Christ here at New Oak Grove.
The call for a new leader for the body was answered when one of our own, the Reverend Tyrone L. Johnson was elected Pastor-Elect on March 12, 2008. Reverend Johnson believes that he has been blessed to have received many achievements in his life, but most importantly is blessed to be called a "Fisher of Men." He is most proud that God has allowed him to serve His people in a way that is beyond comprehension, and mimics Jesus' words in Matthew 20:28, "He came not to be served, but he came to serve." NLV Rev. Johnson was installed as Pastor in a joyous celebration on April 27, 2008, and is leading the way as we strive to accomplish our mission to Bring God's People Up To God's Standards by Being a Doer of The Word of God. (Isaiah 59:19, James 1:22-25)
Over these many years God has truly showered His blessings upon this church, and it is our prayer that we will continue in His will, and in the building up of His Kingdom here on earth.
... and upon this rock I will build my church;
and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. Matthew 16:18