The Church was originally organized as an unincorporated Baptist religious organization sometime during the year of 1913. The church held services in the homes of its members. Little was preserved of the history of the church during this period of its initial organization until its reorganization in 1915, under the leadership of Rev. Davis Robinson who is considered to have been the first minister of Friendship.
Rev. Davis Robinson was called in 1915 and served until his death in 1929. The church moved into its first permanent sanctuary located on the corner of Pratt and Clinton Streets.
Following the death of Rev. Robinson, Rev. Twilus Davis was called in April of 1929. On January 30, 1930, Rev. Davis obtained a parcel of land located at 146 - 148 Hickory Street near the corner of Clinton Street to be the site of the new sanctuary. The cornerstone was laid during the year of 1931. Rev. Davis left Friendship in March of 1938.
In 1939, the church called Rev. Major J. Jenkins of Memphis, TN to service as its third Pastor. During his pastorate the church purchased a grocery store known as the Friendship Community Market and renovated the sanctuary. Rev. Jenkins passed away June 23, 1943.
Rev. Clarence L. Franklin was called in 1943 to serve as its fourth Pastor. On May 26, 1944, the Church purchased a parsonage at 179 Glenwood Avenue, and began a radio ministry broadcast on Sunday mornings. Rev. Franklin left Friendship in 1946.
The Church called Rev. Richard H. Dixon, Sr. to serve as its fifth Pastor in 1946. By January 1, 1947, the Church mortgage debt had been retired and the building at 146 - 148 Hickory was improved and renovated. In 1948, Rev. Dixon left Friendship and organized the Second Temple Baptist Church.
Rev. Edward D. McNeely was called to serve in 1948. On November 10, 1952, the Church entered into a building contract for the present sanctuary. Ground was broken on June 7, 1953 and on August 7, 1954, following a parade and motorcade; we marched into the new sanctuary. The debt was retired in 1965. In 1967, the Church sold the parsonage at 179 Glenwood Avenue and purchased property at 117 Humboldt Parkway. Rev. McNeely passed away on August 30, 1977.
Rev. A. Charles Ware was called in July of 1978 to serve at its seventh Pastor. During his Pastorate, our bus ministry was expanded, land for a parking lot was acquired, the sanctuary was renovated, a garage was built to house the Church's vehicles, Friendship Manor was constructed, also the installation of the lift-a-vator and the completion of the Edward D. McNeely Education Building. Rev. Ware passed away on July 21, 1998.
Rev. William S. Wilson, Jr. was called in August of 1999 to serve as our eighth Pastor. During his Pastorate, he created Phat Saturday and Jamm with the Lamb. Rev. Wilson left Friendship in 2005.
Rev. Daris Dixon-Clark served as the ninth Pastor of Friendship from January 2007 to August 2011. Rev. Clark’s goal for Friendship was to strengthen us as a unified Body of Christ. His personal mission was to “glorify God through effective preaching and teaching of God’s Word and living a life that is a full expression of my God given gifts.”
Pastor Edward Jackson, Jr. answered the call to serve as the tenth Pastor of Friendship in February 2014. Under the leadership of Pastor Jackson, Friendship continues to expand both spiritually and in membership. To God Be The Glory For The Things He Has Done!
Pastor Edward Jackson Jr. was born in Buffalo, New York to Mrs. Karen Jackson and the late Mr. Edward Jackson, Sr. Confessing his belief in Christ at an early age, he grew up in the church, working and serving the people of God. This foundation established by his parents, family, church, teachers, and mentors, provided the motivation for the direction his life has gone.
Pastor Jackson is a man who truly values education, and has worked diligently to achieve his educational goals. He received his elementary education at Public School #3, and his high school education at Hutchinson Central Technical High School, all located in the "City of Good Neighbors", Buffalo, New York. In August of 1998, Pastor Jackson journeyed outside of Buffalo to Atlanta, GA to the Historic Morehouse College to begin his collegiate studies. Pastor Jackson is a 2002 graduate of Morehouse College receiving a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology. He continued is educational pursuits becoming, a 2008 graduate of Northern Baptist Theological Seminary (Lombard, IL), earning a Master of Divinity Degree. Most recently he became a 2013 graduate of the University of Rochester School of Medicine & Dentistry, obtaining a Master of Science degree in Marriage and Family Therapy.
On June 13, 1999, Pastor Jackson accepted God’s calling to the gospel ministry, and in August of 1999, he preached his first sermon entitled “Don’t be ashamed to do God’s Will.” Since then, God has truly blessed and expanded his ministry. Pastor Jackson has had the privilege to preach in various cities across the United States, on the continent of Africa, in the country of Kenya, and to be an Instructor for the National Baptist Congress of Christian Education. However, Pastor Jackson does not only see his ministry being one limited to the pulpit. For, he has a passion for counseling, and helping people who are struggling through this medium. He has utilized these skills with the Community Health Center of Buffalo, NY. Currently, he still provides counseling to individuals in the church and in our community.
In November of 2013, God called Pastor Jackson to become the Interim Pastor of the Friendship Missionary Baptist Church. Three months later God moved on the hearts of the people, and Pastor Jackson was asked to become the full time Pastor of the Church. On February 28, 2014, Pastor Jackson was installed as pastor of the church, and since then God has proven himself to be more than faithful to him and God’s people. Under Pastor Jackson's leadership, the congregation of the Friendship church has increased and become more generationally diverse. The church has intentionally worked to become more engaged in our surrounding community and engaged in social issues. Purchased a 35 passenger mini coach and a 14 passenger bus with handicap accessibility, and completed many modernization efforts within the church. However, what means more than any of his to Pastor Jackson are the lives that have been changed and the relationships that have been healed by the preaching and teachings of the word of God. All of this progress is credited to the faithfulness, goodness, and grace of God.
Pastor Jackson is affiliated with many organizations in our city and nation. However, the two closest to his heart are his fraternity, The Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc., and Big Brothers Big Sisters of Erie County. He is the very proud husband to his wife Kim, and is an even more proud father to son Cole and daughters Leah and Noel. Pastor Jackson’s life motto still remains “To God be the Glory, for the things HE has done.”
“Friendship Baptist Church exists to provide every person the opportunity to experience the wonders of having a friendship with God and one another through the work of Jesus Christ”
We will accomplish this vision by living our lives with godly authenticity.
As a congregation, we declare that we will hold to these 7 commitments in everything we do as a church.
1. We COMMIT to have Christ at the center of everything we do as a church.
2. We COMMIT to live our faith with the spirit of authenticity
3. We COMMIT to maintain the unity of the body at any cost
4. We COMMIT to place divine truth above earthly traditions
5. We COMMIT to worship God in spirit and in truth
6. We COMMIT to a life of service for the advancement of the Kingdom through the use of our time, talents, and treasures
7. We COMMIT to be an intentional blessing to our community; locally, nationally, and globally
All these things we commit to in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit...AMEN