About Us

Being & Becoming

Welcome to the Mount Olive Baptist Church website! We are truly glad that you have shown interest in our church. If you are a first-time visitor or returning friend, we hope that this site provides you with the information you require in order to become a part of the Mount Olive Baptist Church family.

We are a faith community that loves God and all of God’s people regardless of their various stripes and hues. We are excited about the many wonderful things God is doing as we operate under the mantra, Being and Becoming.

This descriptor is a marvelous way of building upon our church’s distinguished past and projecting an even more glorious future in the areas of Christian education, domestic and global missions, and social justice. As we begin to live more and more into the calling God has placed upon this body, we are developing disciples for Jesus Christ through vibrant worship, the teaching and preaching of the Word of God, fellowship, technology, and ministries of care for every age.

No matter how colorful or innovative the trend in web designs are, they are always lacking and flat when making an effort to capture the spirit of a people. Therefore, I strongly urge you to come and experience Mount Olive for yourself! There’s a whole lot more church to Mount Olive than meets the eye. I’m sure that you will find (as others have already found) the Mount Olive Baptist Church a good place to be—and to become— the person in Christ that God has destined you to be. Why don’t you join us as we fulfill the scriptural mandate to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with our God? (Micah 6:8).

With the Hope of Meeting You Soon,
Dr. James E. Victor, Jr.
Senior Pastor

Our Story: Milestones

Mt. Olive is a historically African American congregation with a long history of striving to “Be and Become” the Church for this present age.


Eighty-five persons from the Old Bell Church, led by Rev. Washington Waller established a new church of freed slaves living in a settlement known as “Freedman’s Village”located in what is now Arlington National Cemetery.
April 1874
The congregants moved church services to Washington DC and the Antioch Baptist Church was established according to the Baptist Church Director. After a short period in Southwest Washington, DC, the church returned to Virginia in the area known as Johnson’s Hill in Arlington, Virginia. The Antioch Baptist Church changed its name to Mount Olive Baptist Church.
Mount Olive continued to grow spiritually and numerically under the direction of several pastors: Rev. Aquilla Sayles, Rev. Frank Washington (1910 – 1914); Rev. Joseph H. Lee (1914 – 1931); Rev. M.A. Hunter (1934-1937) and R. L. Rollins (10 months in 1937), Mt. Olive once again found herself in need of an under shepherd and God answered her prayers.
February 1938
Reverend Dr. Aaron Mackley was called to lead the Mount Olive Church and served as our pastor for 55 years. Truly a leader in every respect, Pastor Mackley added to the spiritual and physical growth of the Church.
December 24, 1939
The corner stone was laid and on May 5, 1940, a newly renovated building was dedicated to the service of God. Shortly thereafter, the War Department ordered the vacation of the church property to make way for roads leading to what is now “the Pentagon”.
December 1942
The cornerstone was laid for the new building and in late 1944 the church moved into a new home in Johnson’s Hill or Arlington View community as it is known today.
Mt. Olive began airing Sunday services over WARL radio station.
Mount Olive began to hold two services each Sunday.
Mount Olive moved into its current facility with an enlarged sanctuary and more classroom space for the Church.
July 13, 1993
Rev. Dr. Mackley resigned from active leadership and was raised to Pastor Emeritus in honor of his five decades of visionary leadership.
Rev. Anton T. Wesley was called to be the eighth pastor of Mount Olive. The Church appointed its first Assistant Pastor, Reverend R.E. Torrence and licensed several sons into the ministry.
June 2002
The Reverend James E. Victor, Jr. is installed as the pastor of Mount Olive Baptist Church.
The church embarked on a visioning and strategic planning process seeking God’s direction for this body of Christ.
Mt. Olive embraces a new vision to be “an inclusive family of believers committed to growth in and spread of the gospel of Jesus Christ; showing unity and Christian love in action by reaching out to our immediate community and beyond.”
2007 – 2012
Mt. Olive licensed its first woman to the gospel ministry, Minister LaVaeda Coulter in the church’s 133 year history. In 2011, the church set apart for ordained ministry its first female clergyperson, the Rev. Patricia E. Kelly.
2013 – 2014
Mt. Olive embarks on and completes infrastructure improvements to include technology enhancements that allows, among other things, live and on demand web streaming. The church also made a 3-year commitment to make Haiti a mission priority. In 2013 through a partnership with the Lott Carey Foreign Missions Convention and Grace International Ministries of Haiti, Mt Olive began international missionary efforts, funding and sending volunteers to build a community center for the residents of the Lambi Village just outside of Port-Au-Prince.
Mt. Olive completed its 3-year Haiti mission commitment by assisting the city of Carries recover from devastating floods. Mt. Olive also returns to the air ways and begins broadcasting its worship services on WAVA 105.1 FM radio on Sunday afternoons.
Continuing to seek new ways of service, Mt. Olive engages in a partnership with the Hoffman-Boston Middle School, providing a Saturday backpack program that enables weekend meals for the students; initiates monthly visits to the local nursing and rehabilitation facility; creates new small group ministries to meet the needs of congregants who live throughout the region.

As we continue to build upon the efforts of our forebears, our 150 year history is the story of a people “Being and Becoming” who God is calling us to be.

What We Believe

We Believe:

  • In the Triune God – God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit in perfect unity;
  • We are all created in the image of God but fall short of God’s standard; therefore we all need redemption;
  • By his life, death and resurrection Jesus Christ redeems us;
  • We are redeemed when we believe in our hearts and confess with our mouths, the life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ;
  • The Bible is the telling of God’s love for us and God’s plan to redeem us;
  • We are called to live and share God’s love and redemptive plan with the world;
  • All are welcome in God’s house;
  • Our African American Baptist heritage to be a valid and vital expression of the Christian faith;
  • In two practices that govern the communal life of faith – Baptism and the Lord’s Supper (or communion);
  • Baptism by immersion in water should take place after confession, but any form of baptism occurring after confession is acknowledged;
  • Disciples must follow the example of Jesus and care for the poor and the disenfranchised;
  • Both private and communal worship are essential parts of the Christian life.