What’s our story?
International Baptist Church Bremen (IBC Bremen) began as an English-speaking church, serving American military personnel stationed in Osterholz-Scharmbeck (a village near Bremen). In 1991, as the military was withdrawn back to the United States, the church ministries began to focus on the growing international presence in the city of Bremen. Under the guidance of Southern Baptist Missionaries, services were initially conducted once a month. Soon, English-language worship services were held every Sunday afternoon in Bremen in the building of a German Baptist Church, the Kreuzgemeinde. Wednesday evening Bible studies and prayer meetings were also introduced. Brother Ernest Walker and his wife Pauline nurtured the church family in these early days from 1992 – 1994, followed by Rev. Stephen Sligh and his wife Kären from 1995 – 1997.
In May 1998, under the pastoral leadership of Rev. Richard A. Clark, together with his wife Jackie, IBC Bremen was recognised as a constituted church with a charter membership roll of 27 believers and was also accepted as a full member of the European Baptist Convention (now International Baptist Convention), supported by the Southern Baptist Convention (USA). In May 1999, IBC Bremen was also received as an associate member of the German Baptist Union (“Bund Evangelisch Freikirchlicher Gemeinden Deutschland”).
In August 2003, IBC Bremen called her first full-time pastor, supported entirely by the church. Under the pastoral leadership of Rev. James Erwin, IBC Bremen continued to grow, with a number of house groups starting up and the church enjoying its first retreat. In September 2007, Pastor Jim and his wife, Heike, moved to the United States to begin a new ministry in the state of Missouri.
In February 2008, IBC Bremen welcomed Rev. Neville and Dorothy Johannie from South Africa as her pastoral couple. With the guidance of Pastor Johannie IBC Bremen continued to develop a community of worshippers of Christ who come from all over the world, establishing believers in their faith and equipping them to share their faith with others.
In December 2010 the Johannies followed a call to serve in Dubai.
Until November 2014 the church was faithfully served by a series of interim pastors and their wives: John and Elaine Broom, Bernhard and Penny Faulhammer, Kenneth and Roni Moore, Johnson and Mercy Sigiri, Derrick and Meghan Boykin.
In the middle of November 2014, the church welcomed Paul Grinyer from the UK as to serve as its Pastor. Pastor Grinyer served faithfully for more than 7 years, until the early months of 2022. IBC Bremen also welcomed an interm pastor for a brief season in 2022.
What is it like?
Average attendance at Sunday worship services ranges from 80 to 150 with at least 20 to 30 different nationalities represented each week. English is not necessarily the mother tongue of all worshippers. Overall, IBC Bremen is a predominantly young church with a large proportion of students, but also a growing number of young families.
We offer Children’s Ministry for children aged 3 – 12, Young Adults’ Ministry, Ladies’ Ministry and Men’s Ministry as well as various house groups which meet on a weekly basis in different locations all over Bremen.
The membership roll stands at approx. 70, with several of the 27 Charter Members from 1998 still faithfully attending. Members (Germans and internationals) who are permanent residents in Bremen form an important backbone of the church. In addition, IBC Bremen is home to a large number of students and young professionals who are in Bremen for a limited period of time. Many of our young people are students at one of the city’s universities or colleges.
The IBC fellowship is a friendly and open congregation, pursuing opportunities for worship and Christian growth, based on the eternal word of God. We enjoy a mixture of contemporary praise & worship songs as well as traditional hymns, led by our worship team.
Where do we meet?
IBC Bremen meets in a central location in Bremen, not far from the main railway station and we are easily reached by bus or tram. The church does not have its own building. Instead, services are held in the well-equipped building of the German Baptist church “Kreuzgemeinde” Bremen. The building is also used by a Christian Arab church, a Chinese group and Spanish group.