Mother Bethel A.M.E Church

Mother Bethel A.M.E Church

Regardless of the purpose of your group's trip to Philadelphia, we fully believe a stop at Mother Bethel A.M.E (African Methodist Episcopal) Church will benefit you!

One of the most historic and culturally important spots in Philly, this church is considered to be the mother church of the nation's first black denomination. There are multiple reports of the official first founding, which is somewhere between 1777 and 1794. That makes this the oldest African Methodist Episcopal congregation in the entire nation, as well as the oldest parcel of land continuously owned by African Americans in the entire United States.

During your visit, you will be visiting the Richard Allen Museum, the museum located in the church's basement crypt that is dedicated to the founding pastor and first bishop of the church, Reverend Richard Allen.

The Richard Allen Museum of  Mother Bethel African Methodist Episcopal Church is an institution dedicated to the collection, preservation, interpretation and presentation of public documents and artifacts that chronicle Richard Allen's founding of Mother Bethel and the subsequent development of the African Methodist Episcopal denomination.

There are various important artifacts throughout the museum, such as Allen's tomb, original pews, the original pulpit, ballot boxes from church official elections, and even muskets gathered for use in the War of 1812. We highly suggest your group opts for a tour of the church and museum, which will last about 40 to 60 minutes.

Be sure to stop and appreciate the huge stained-glass windows throughout depicting both religious and Masonic images, as well as the onsite gift shop featuring religious, educational, and historical tidbits.