We are an all-age local church made up of people from a wide spectrum of life. We seek to teach, understand and follow the whole message of the Bible, showing us how to be reconnected with God, which is the most vital need for everyone in our modern world. Doctrinally, we are evangelical with Charismatic leanings and have a Baptist origin. Our desire to share this message goes beyond our locality and we have a heart for this nation and other nations beyond our own.
We are an enthusiastic church and our Sunday meetings have a contemporary feel, with modern music and an open participation to all, where we seek to allow the Holy Spirit to guide us. Bible teaching is always a key ingredient of our meetings together and we also provide children’s and youth programmes to run alongside those for adults.
Relocated to Mumbai
Started Antioch Training Centre
Moved to Colaba
Acknowledged the Apostolic Oversight of Vic Gledhill
Started Sahaara Charitable Society
From a small beginning at Byculla in 1867, the church grew to be relocated first in Bombay Central and later to Colaba in 1911 where it stands today at the present site.
It was served by a number of pastors who were mainly Canadian and British. Their tenure ranged from a few months to a few years. During this period the church was a refuge to many passing
Many of the pastors or their families during late 1800s and early 1900s paid a high price, even as malaria and other sicknesses took their toll of these ministers. Some of them had to leave the country on board a ship on a stretcher, as either they or their family members were critically ill.
It was around the 1950’s that a need was felt to give formal theological training to new people. Thus a Bible college was established in the manse and was called the Berean Bible College named after the Jews of Berea who did not take Paul’s interpretation of scripture at face value but diligently checked the scriptures to see if he was right. The Bible commends them for this.
As the students grew in numbers the Bible college moved to Chembur, (a suburb of Bombay )and later to Bangalore (South India) where it presently located and continues to train pastors. Pastor Sumitra Gaikwad who oversees our Hindi congregation at Colaba is one of the early graduates of this Bible College.
There were several pastors who in the late sixties and early seventies had heard news about the charismatic renewal in the west and they began waiting on God for the visitation of the Holy Spirit. And he did come. A number of people were filled with the Spirit.
Many a people who today are heads of major charismatic churches in the city of Mumbai and in our nation of India, trace their experience of the infilling of the Holy Spirit in this Bombay Baptist church building, either in the main church hall or in the manse. This move blessed the city more than it did the local church.
The Sunday school was very strong on Bible knowledge and would win almost every inter-church competition in the city that they participated in. Under
Charles Lazaro came to the city in the early 1970’s as a worker of Youth for Christ, but soon felt the call of God to be trained at the South India Biblical Seminary. On his return, he was appointed as the next pastor of the church from 1973 to 1981. The church went through a period of renewal and revival. The team of deacons changed hands as younger but more spiritual joined the team.
This was the theme, which Pastor Lazaro emphasized. He began to lay stress on righteous living and commitment to the body of Christ. The faithfulness of the pastor was rewarded as God added new members and baptized them with His Holy Spirit in 1975. This was the second move of the Holy Spirit First being in 60’s. This time, however, the renewal stayed with us. The congregation saw a new expression of Christian Life and worship in the youth of the church. This caused integration of youth into the church. Later the same young people went back to the Sunday school to teach and the Baptist church became a family where every age group was integrated and accepted though the proportion of youth was large.
Members were encouraged to exercise their spiritual gifts during the worship. The choir too changed from being a band of talented singers to a group of worshipers.
As the influence of the church grew the pastor was invited to speak in many places. He planned to train members to preach and teach the word so that they could step in during his out of town engagements. He called this group of “men of the word”. Arthur Thangiah who is presently pastors our Tamil congregations is one of those who completed the course.
Towards the end of Pastor Charles Lazaro’s
Another area of transformation was the finance of the church. This began with Pastor Charles Lazaro who emphasized the need to stand on our own feet rather than depend on the western money. He faithfully taught about tithing. Today the church & its
In 1992 the church started ‘Antioch Training Center’ (ATC) which was a mini Bible school for its growing need. The students come from different part of the country. The faculty consists of senior proven mature pastors or trainers who are very well accomplished in their particular field or subject. Today, the former students of the ATC are seen to be planting and pastoring a number of satellite churches.
In 1984 the church acknowledged the apostolic oversight of Victor Gledhill. His input has caused the church to grow without any bottlenecks. Through his teachings, the church has understood the need to ‘love your
The ministry is relationally associated with Salt & Light Ministries International of which Stanley Mehta is a part of the International
Each satellite church has its own unique structure but some of the activities are common, namely Sunday school for children, cell groups, foundation courses called ‘Foundations for Life’, advanced courses like ‘Discovering my Ministry’, ‘Discovering my Mission’, etc. the church has even written its own bible study material on various books of the bible and on specialized subject like ‘Living Life, Debt Free’, ‘Effective Praying’, ‘Spiritual Warfare’ etc. It periodically runs seminars for couples on enriching marriage, on parenting, on spiritual gifts, on
“A Great Commitment to the Great Commandment and the Great Commission will build a Great Church and usher in a Great Kingdom!”
It is the dream of a place where the hurting, the depressed, the frustrated, and the confused can find love, acceptance, help, hope, forgiveness, guidance and encouragement.
It is the dream of sharing the Good News of Jesus Christ with hundreds of thousands of residents in and around the Globe.
It is the dream of welcoming 10,000 members into the fellowship of our church family-loving, learning, laughing and living in harmony together.
It is the dream of developing people to spiritual maturity through discipling and bible studies, small groups, seminars, retreats and a Bible school for our members.
It is the dream of equipping every believer for a significant ministry by helping them discover gifts and talents God gave them.
It is the dream of sending our members on short-term mission projects and as missionaries & church workers into major cities of India, to different states within India, to our neighboring countries and ultimately to other nations of the world. It is the dream of planting daughter-churches in every local language.
It is the dream of becoming “Salt and light” in the community, thereby influencing every sphere around us with the Kingdom values, namely sphere of families, education, judiciary, arts & entertainment, Media, politics, business, industry, economics, social services, etc.