Relive history at Ebenezer Baptist Church
One of the main attractions of the Martin Luther King, Jr. Historical Park, Historic Ebenezer Baptist Church is located in Atlanta’s iconic Sweet Auburn neighborhood not far from Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s boyhood home.
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was a masterful orator whose words rang out over the nation and the world, evoking hope and change. Dr. King’s role in the American civil rights movement may make him seem larger than life, but on any given Sunday from 1960 to 1968, he could be found practicing his calling by preaching to his congregation in his hometown. The same man who delivered “I Have a Dream” on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial also delivered Sunday sermons at Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta.
Reasons to Visit Ebenezer Baptist Church
- The neighborhood where Dr. King spent his childhood. In 1929, Martin Luther King Jr. was born in his family’s home just a short walk from Ebenezer Baptist, where his father was pastor, and his mother was the musical director. His grandfather, Daniel Williams, had been pastor at Ebenezer from 1894 to 1926. Dr. King spent his childhood in this neighborhood, part of a tight family with very special ties to Ebenezer Baptist.
- A spiritual home to the Sweet Auburn community. Dr. King joined his father as co-pastor of Ebenezer Baptist Church in 1960. In this role, he tended the spiritual needs of his congregation with the same passion, dedication and energy he put into his civil rights work. His vision and ideals ripened with every sermon he delivered in that sanctuary, leading his congregation in faith and calling his nation’s conscience to task.
- A place to honor and celebrate a great civil rights leader. April 9, 1968 was a day of national mourning. All eyes were on Atlanta for the two funerals of the great civil rights leader, the first of which was held at Ebenezer Baptist Church. Attending this private funeral were friends, family and dignitaries. Following the service, Dr. King’s coffin was carried by procession to Morehouse College, where a second, public funeral was held. He was laid to rest in South View cemetery, although he is now buried at the plaza between the King Center and Ebenezer Baptist Church.
- An important national landmark. As part of the Martin Luther King, Jr. National Historic Park, a unit of the National Park Service, Ebenezer Baptist Church has been formally recognized as an important national landmark. For this reason, the National Park Service invested in its restoration in 2001, returning the sanctuary and fellowship hall to the way they looked when Martin Luther King Jr. was co-pastor with his father.
- The center of the American civil rights movement. The Southern Christian Leadership Conference under the leadership of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. organized famous, historical civil rights protests beginning with the Montgomery Bus Boycott in 1955. It’s no coincidence that Ebenezer Baptist Church was the location for the founding meeting of this respected organization. As such, it was the original center of the American civil rights movement.
- Historic Ebenezer Baptist Church is located on historic Auburn Avenue. The newer Ebenezer Baptist Church is located across the street on Jackson Street.
- Tour the historic church and hear Dr. King’s speeches, including the “I Have a Dream” speech. Attend Sunday services at the newer church.
- Dr. Rev. Raphael Warnock serves as the senior pastor of Ebenezer Baptist Church, the fifth senior pastor since its founding. In 2021, Warnock became the first African-American to represent Georgia in the Senate and plans to continue in his role as senior pastor at the church while also serving in the Senate.
- As you stand outside the historic church, be sure to snap a photo of the sign, which is an Atlanta icon.
Know before you go
Where is the Historic Ebenezer Church located?
The original church is located at:
407 Auburn Ave NE
Atlanta, GA 30312
How do I visit Historic Ebenezer Baptist Church?
The historic church is part of the Martin Luther King, Jr. National Historical Park. For visiting hours inside the building, please check with the National Park Service.
Where is the newer Ebenezer Baptist Church located?
Ebenezer Baptist Church is located at:
101 Jackson St NE
Atlanta GA, 30312
When are services held at the newer church?
Service is on Sundays at 9 a.m. and 11:30 a.m. Worship on Wednesdays (WOW) begins at 7 p.m.
Is the newer church open for tours?
Yes. Ebenezer Heritage Sanctuary is open for tours Monday through Saturday 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sundays 1 to 5 p.m. The Horizon Sanctuary is not open for tours. Visitors are welcome to attend Sunday services. Please contact Ebenezer for times.
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