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Historical Overview and Accomplishments of the Bergen County Council of Churches

The Bergen County Council of Churches was formed in 1953, and in 1954 it was formally established and incorporated. The Council of Churches was formed as part of a moving of the Holy Spirit within the Christian Church, which expressed itself in a renewed dedication to the goal of Christian Unity. Unlike the State, National and World Council of Churches, the Bergen County Council of Churches is not a council of denominations. Rather, it is a council of and for local Christian congregations, who minister in Bergen County.

Throughout our history, we have sought to provide means of cooperation between Bergen County's Churches to provide a Christian Witness here in our county. Whether that witness was in providing an Ecumenical Easter Dawn Service, or providing a chaplain at the Bergen County Jail, or helping to start the Interreligious Fellowship for the Homeless, the point has always been this. . .

by working together, our local Churches can enhance their ministry,

by providing a united witness here in Bergen County.


Over the past fifty years, our world has gone through many changes, but the theme and purpose of the BCCC has remained steadfast:


The Bergen County Council of Churches

is an Ecumenical Cluster of Christian Churches

throughout Bergen County that exists to provide a means

of cooperation among the faith traditions of the County.

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Historical Highlights

. . . Due to a lack of space at George Washington Memorial Park, the Easter Dawn Service cannot be held there. That year an alternative service was held in Van Saun Park. By 1999, the one service has grown to seven services, which are held at convenient sites around the County.

. . . The County's financial crisis causes the end of the traditional Bergen County Chaplaincy Program. The Council intervenes, and advocates successfully for the current Pastoral Care Program. The Pastoral Care Program continues to serve Bergen Pines, the Bergen County Jail System, and other County facilities.

. . . The population of homeless individuals and families grows beyond the County's ability to respond. The County reaches out to the Bergen County Council of Churches, and other religious communities, to provide resources. The Council and other partners worked together to begin the ministry of the Interreligious Fellow for the Homeless. For over 15 years now, the Council and many of our congregations have made the IRF’s Ministry possible.

. . . A push is made to repeal Bergen County's Blue Laws, which are focused on setting a reasonable limit to Sunday shopping. The Council participated in the successful effort to maintain the Blue Laws.


. . . Wilma Supik retires and the Religious page disappears from The Record. The Council meets with The Record, and requests more "religious coverage". David Gibson is hired as Religious Editor. The "Religion and Values" section becomes a regular Thursday

feature. This was followed by the introduction of an Interfaith Journal that was published monthly by The Record. This has changed to The Faith and Values On-Line Magazine – www.njfaithandvalues.org.

. . . A Korean Church Service is disrupted, and the Council is asked to mediate. The Council successfully mediated the resulting tension within the Church and the community. As a result of this one incident, the Council forms a Human Relations Task Force, which helps in the formation of the Bergen County Human Relations Council.

. . . PBS Channel 13 asks the Council's participation in Bill Moyers' production of "Genesis: A Living Conversation". The Council signs on, and is able to introduce this program to the religious community of Bergen County. A Resource Guide for this series is provided to all of our churches. The BCCC also is a partner in the PBS’s new Program " Religion and Ethics ",which airs on PBS Ch 13, every Sunday at 6 PM.

. . . A growing diversity within Bergen County's religious and cultural communities is noted. The Council helps to form the Interfaith Brotherhood and Sisterhood Committee, the Human Relations Coalition and Commission, and the Pastors' Multicultural Forum. These groups work to promote a greater sense of harmony within our growing diversity.


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quoted from The Record

January 8, 1995

The Bergen County Council of Churches

is New Jersey's  most active and effective

Ecumenical Agency.

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Current Involvements and Accomplishments throughout the Bergen County Area

Faith and Values Web Site in cooperation with the Record

* The Interreligious Fellowship for the Homeless

* The Center for Food Action

* The CRC Information and Referral Service

* Habitat for Humanity

* Record's Food Drive on World Hunger Day

* The Human Relations Commission of B C

* Interfaith Brotherhood & Sisterhood Committee

* The Bergen Regional Medical Center's Chaplaincy Program

* The Bergen County Chaplaincy Program

* H.O.P.E. for Ex-Offenders

* The Prison Fellowship Ministry

* The Commission on Missing & Abused Children

* 30 Minutes-- Council's weekly Cable Program

* Coordinated Relief for Local Flood Victims

* Offered Counseling and Support for the families who suffered losses due to the 9/11/01 Tragedy

* Bergen County United Way

* Christmas in April

* Santa Clause Program for Bergen County Foster Children

* Bergen County Communities Against Tobacco Coalition

* Bergen County Commission for Abused, Exploited and Missing Children

* Bergen County Task Force on Day Laborers

* Bergen County Traumatic Loss Coalition