South Benfleet was one of the populated areas in South East Essex visited in 1922 by five Baptist Ministers from the Southend district who had the vision to establish new churches linked to the Essex Baptist Association. Regular Sunday services commenced and a Baptist Church was opened on 1st December 1923 which has continued in the heart of this community for 100 years. As the attendance increased, the church was enlarged by adding a meeting room, toilets and a small kitchen and that is when the Kent's Hill entrance was blocked off as the church interior layout was reversed. The "hut" which served as a venue for youth activities was replaced by a large hall opened in 1999 and this was later linked to the original church building by an entrance vestibule and prayer room. Today the entrance to the large car park and buildings is from Constitution Hill. The Library just across the road from the church has information about the early settlement of Benfleet (The tree lined creek) which had easy access to the Thames and the area around St Mary's Church is a historical conservation area. Benfleet has grown significantly with the important C2C rail link to London turning it into a commuter town. Over the years the church has been served by Pastors Peter Birchinall, Victor Hensman, Roy Evans, David Lucke and David Keeble. The church members appointed Peter Lillystone as Pastor since October 2022. The Church is led by the Pastor and Deacons with church members fulfilling various roles to provide support and help. The Church centenary was celebrated in a special service on 3rd December 2023.
Baptism by immersion is practiced for those who are followers of Jesus Christ and ready to make a public confession of faith in Him as their Saviour and Lord. Anyone who regularly attends the church and wishes to discuss church membership can speak to the Pastor or Church Secretary. You can use the Contact Us form or the telephone number to contact the Pastor.
Benfleet Baptist Church is associated with the Baptist Union of Great Britain (BUGB) where more information about what a Baptist Church is can be found. Sunday services are when 30-40 people meet together to worship and to hear teaching from the Bible. Communion is part of the service in the morning on the first Sunday and in the evening on the third Sunday of the month. Regular meetings are held during the week and we welcome new people to appropriate events.
The Church supports 2 local charities. HARP, helping to relieve homelessness and hardship in Southend on Sea. There is a box in the foyer to receive donations for HARP. Anyone who is homeless or at risk of homelessness can contact Bradbury Day Centre. The second is Havens Hospices providing palliative and supportive care to adults and children living with complex or incurable conditions in Essex. Please visit their websites to get more information.