First, we would like to thank you for desiring to know more about Freedom Church. We are humbled that God has placed us in Baltimore to join Jesus as He works in and through the lives of His people. We hope that this brief summary of who we are and what we are about answers your questions. If not feel free to drop us an email or to call us. We would love to hear from you.
God is at work! He is still at work in the world and we can definitely see His hand here in the city of Baltimore. Freedom church is the unveiling of God’s story in the city through people from all different backgrounds and ethnicities. The one thing we all have in common is that we are now a part of God’s story because we have all met with Jesus and repented of our sin and trusted in His gospel. And, in the providence of God we have been united together to serve Jesus in and through Freedom Church. So how did Freedom church begin?
Pastor Michael Crawford was born and raised in southern California by a single mom. After battling through a crushing disappointment and facing abject racism Michael was contemplating suicide. In a moment of desperation Michael felt God tell him to buy a Bible and he began to read all of the words in red. Half--way through the book of Matthew he trusted in Christ for salvation and his life was radically changed. Michael pastored several different churches in California and raised a growing family. In 2008 Michael began wrestling with the call of God on his life to plant a church in a major U.S. city. Michael had pastored for 10 years and has always desired to start a church in a major U.S. city that was majority African American. In September of 2008 Michael received a phone call from Pastor Steve Hartland, a long-time friend, who was living in Harford County Maryland and pastoring there. Pastor Steve’s church desired to see churches started in the city of Baltimore and the two men talked about the possibility of Michael coming out for a visit. In November of 2008 Michael took his first visit to Baltimore. From the moment he landed he knew God was calling him to this city. Over the next few months and into 2009 God continued to confirm this.
During one of Michael’s visits he met Rob Steinbach, who was attending Steve Hartland’s church and also felt called to plant in Baltimore. As they listened to one another’s story they began to be convinced that God was calling them to work together to plant a church. In July 2009 Michael and his wife Danielle and their 5 children moved to the same area in the city of Baltimore that Rob was in. Michael and Rob began to gather people – some of whom had already been praying for a church like Freedom to begin – and had Freedom’s first public meeting in August at the YMCA on 33rd street. 50 adults and 12 kids showed up to hear about the vision, mission and values for Freedom church. God was clearly moving and doing something in and through Freedom church so the next step was to locate a more permanent facility for Freedom to meet at. On September 6th 2009 Freedom began meeting at Garrett Heights Elementary School on Sunday evenings at 5pm, and in January of 2010 Freedom Church was officially launched.
Freedom Church has now grown to include approximately 120 individuals from all different backgrounds and ethnicities. God has raised up more than 12 couples who serve as leaders in various capacities. After serving Freedom Church for 3 years, Rob Steinbach moved to Washington State in the spring of 2013 where he and his family now pastor a church in the city of Bremerton. Soon after Freedom was founded Sean Robinson and his family started attending Freedom and began to serve and support various ministries as needs arose. Sean now serves as our Men’s Discipleship Pastor and leads a Dgroup on the West Side. Tyler Griffin connected with Michael Crawford by phone while Michael was still in California and Tyler was working as a Youth Pastor in Wisconsin. From the first conversation Tyler felt stirred by God to join in the new work in Baltimore. 4 months after Freedom officially launched; Tyler, his wife Lily, and young son moved to Baltimore to help plant Freedom Church. After working a job in construction sales for nearly 3 years and serving and assisting in various capacities with the needs of planting Freedom, Tyler is now the Executive Pastor at Freedom Church and is working closely with Michael Crawford, Sean Robinson, and the leadership team to grow Freedom into the future.
Freedom Church is a church that is committed to making new disciples, equipping existing disciples and above all being disciples of Jesus! We love the city of Baltimore and we want to see this place set free to serve the true and living God. We are committed to planting churches that are serious about making disciples in this city. Our mission is simple, we want to draw people to Jesus and then see them developed in communities and then deployed to culture and we ask you to join us! Our Mission Page explains this in further detail.