BCC History & Name


Bethany Community Church was started by a church planting team sent out from Bethany Church of Long Beach, California, with the goal of impacting the National Capitol area for Christ. 

The work to establish Bethany began in September 1986, when Kevin & Ann McGhee and Rick & Laura Mastroianni moved from Long Beach, CA to Laurel, MD to start a new church. These two couples began to meet the community through a door-to-door survey that sought to determine why so few people in our area attend church. 

On September 28, 1986, Bethany Community Church began as a home bible study. On December 14 of that year, Bethany Community Church held its first worship service at Laurel High School.  After four years, the church leased space in an office park at Laurel Lakes on Route 1, where it held worship services for the next 10 years.  

As membership at Bethany grew, the time came to seek out property on which Bethany could build its own facilities to more effectively serve the Baltimore Washington Corridor. In 1996, the family of Dr. James W. Smith of Laurel donated 24 acres of its beautiful wooded farm on Riding Stable Road to Bethany Community Church.  After many years of construction, the church moved from its Laurel Lakes facilities to its new home between Laurel and Burtonsville. From this location–which lies at the crossroads of Montgomery, Howard, Prince George’s, and Anne Arundel counties–Bethany is uniquely equipped to minister to the spiritual needs in our growing region.

Bethany's name is significant:

Bethany is not only the name of our Mother church, it is the small village where Jesus' friends lived.  We say that Bethany is still the place where Jesus' friends gather.

Community is our middle name because we share in community with each other and extend the love of Christ to the larger Baltimore Washington Corridor.

Church to us does not mean a building, but a family of Christ followers that He has called together to do important things that He has prepared in advance for us to do.  Eph. 2:10


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