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About Us


Mt. Olive Baptist Church was organized in 1923 under the leadership of the late Pastor James Hamilton, inside the gates of Semet Solvay Company Plant in Tonawanda, New York.


In 1924, under the leadership of Pastor Clinton N. Polite, the Church moved outside the company gates, at which time Pastor Polite was called to pastor Tremont Temple Baptist Church in Buffalo, New York. He later became Pastor of Calvary Baptist Church, Buffalo, New York.


Pastor Merritt was called to fill the vacancy left by Pastor Polite. Pastor Merritt died in the early 1930’s. Pastor James B. Benton was then called.


Semet Solvay closed its village in 1941, where some of the parishioners resided. Mt. Olive moved to 571 Clinton Street, Buffalo, New York. The first service was held on the first Sunday in May 1941, with approximately five families: the Pitts, Collins, Hatchetts, Bentons and Robinsons. The Church remained in this location for six (6) months before purchasing and moving to 616 Clinton Street, Buffalo, New York.


The Church was incorporated in November 1941. On December 4, 1966, Mt. Olive moved to 629 E. Delavan Avenue, Buffalo, New York where Pastor Benton served until January 1981. Pastor William Gillison was called to pastor Mt. Olive in June 1981.


In 1983, Mt. Olive Baptist Church, along with Pastor L.T. Boyce and the Calvary Baptist Church, celebrated the mortgage burning of 629 E. Delavan Avenue, Buffalo, New York, two and a half years ahead of schedule.


Pastor William Gillison was given a vision from the Lord in 1984 to build a new edifice to the Glory of God. How this would be accomplished only God knew. However, through much prayer and seeking God, the vision began to unfold.


In the words of Solomon, (II Chronicles 2:1) he began to share the vision of his heart, “behold, I will build a house to the name of the Lord my God, to dedicate it to Him”. Making full use of Christ’s teaching in Mark 11:23-24, Pastor Gillison and faithful members of the congregation said for approximately ten (10) years - it is time to build.


Deuteronomy 1:8 - “Behold, I have set the land before you: go in and possess the land which the Lord sware unto your fathers, Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, to give unto them and their seed after them”.


In February 1988, Mt. Olive purchased three and a half acres of land located at 701 E. Delavan Avenue, Buffalo, New York and in August 1988 held its dedication service on the land, to give God thanks for the land to build on. In 1992 an additional one and a half acres were purchased, giving the Church five acres.


Building construction began in 1994. Remaining faithful to the cause, Mt. Olive completed construction of their new edifice in October 1995.

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