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Loving God and One Another

Our Mission

To make disciples of Jesus Christ, as we love God, love one another and love our neighbor.

Who We Are

Mount Oak Fellowship is not a typical Methodist congregation. Founded in 1881 Mount Oak was for many years a sleepy country church until the 1970-80’s when the congregation experienced a season of dramatic spiritual renewal. The result of this awakening was that the congregation grew from roughly 50 to almost 1,000 worshipers on a typical Sunday morning. Today, Mount Oak is not as large (typically about 100 people gather to worship on a Sunday morning) but we are very much alive and determined to offer Christ to everyone in our community.

What We Believe

We believe that God is real and created everything that is. We believe that Jesus Christ is God come to us in the flesh and that by his death and resurrection, God has made a way for us to enter into his salvation. We believe that Christ did not die exclusively for the people of one nation or race, or only for the chosen “elect”. Instead we believe that Christ is for everyone and that salvation is offered to everyone. Thus in keeping with classic Wesleyan/Methodist beliefs we believe that: All can be saved, all can know that they are saved, and all can be brought to completeness in Christ.

Christian Ethical Beliefs About Human Dignity and Equality

The following four statements are from the Moral Principles of the Wesleyan Covenant Association (an organization of like-minded United Methodists who adhere to the historic Christian faith and to the traditions of the Methodist movement)

We believe that all persons are of sacred worth. Therefore, we gladly welcome all who seek to grow in their relationship with God to attend worship services and participate in the church’s ministries. No person shall be disqualified from becoming a member of a local congregation, holding a leadership position in the church, or becoming an ordained or licensed clergy based on race, color, nationality, national origin, marital status, or economic condition. The WCA specifically renounces all racial and ethnic discrimination and commits itself to work toward full racial and ethnic equality in the church and in society.

Scripture teaches that men and women are of equal value in the eyes of God. Accordingly, the church should treat women and men equally.  We believe that both women and men are called to and gifted for ordained and licensed ministry, and both genders are able to hold any role of leadership within the WCA.

We believe marriage and sexual intimacy are good gifts from God. In keeping with Christian teaching through the ages and throughout the Church universal, we believe that marriage is the uniting of one man and one woman in a single, exclusive union. We believe that God intends faithfulness in marriage and celibacy in singleness.

We believe that every person must be afforded compassion, love, kindness, respect, and dignity. Hateful and harassing behavior or attitudes directed toward any individual or group are to be repudiated and are not in accord with Scripture nor the doctrines of the WCA.

Traditional Worship Service

(Sundays at 9:00 am in the Sanctuary) Our early Sunday service begins at 9:00 am and is a blend of traditional hymns and liturgy with opportunities to share our burdens and joys in a spirit of openness towards the Holy Spirit. Jesus said, "Therefore every teacher of the law who has become a disciple in the kingdom of heaven is like the owner of a house who brings out of his storeroom new treasures as well as old." (Matthew 13:52)

Wednesdays in the Word

On Wednesday nights from September through May we offer a Christian program for the whole family. On the first Wednesday of the month, the evening begins with an inexpensive dinner ($6 per person or $20 per family) which is served from 5:30 – 6:30 pm. After that from 6:45 – 8:00 pm we offer faith-studies for all ages (children, middle school youth, high school youth and adults). Everyone is invited to take part.

Contemporary Worship Service

(Sundays at 10:45 am in the Fellowship Hall) Our second worship service begins at 10:45 am and is contemporary in style. This means that our praise teams lead us in worshipping God by singing a mixture of contemporary Christian songs and hymns that have been rearranged for younger generations. In addition to that there is also a time of prayer and regular opportunities to receive Holy Communion. Parents, you should also know that at 10:45 we offer “Kingdom Kids” for ages 4-11 during the sermon, though you are welcome to keep your children with you for the entire service. Nursery for children under age 4 is currently unavailable.

Kingdom Kids and Child Care

On Sunday mornings we offer children’s ministries a during our 10:45 am service. We do not currently have a nursery, but we offer “Kingdom Kids” (ages 4-11) which meets during the sermon. Youth (age 11 through high school) are invited to the "Ignite" class every other week. Children are welcome to stay with their parents for the whole service as well.

The Service

The services are roughly 75 minutes long and we encourage you to come 5-10 minutes early so that you can get acclimated. Both services (traditional and contemporary) include some good music, a chance to pray, a message which is both Biblical and practical, and a chance to meet people who are trying to follow Jesus Christ.

Where Do I Go?

As you face the church building from the parking lot, the sanctuary where the 8:30 service is help is slightly uphill and to your left (there is a steeple and cross on top of the roof). The fellowship hall is to your right and there are double wooden doors through which you can enter. Once you arrive, one of our greeters will be happy to answer basic questions that you might have.

What Should I Wear?

At the 8:30 service most people dress in either business casual or formal church attire (suits and dresses). At the 10:45 service most people dress in either casual or business casual attire. That said, we encourage you to dress in a way that is comfortable to you because God is more concerned about your inside than your outside.

For Your Kids

We have a dedicated children’s ministry (birth through 5th grade) and youth ministry (6th-12th grade) that both endeavor to make the message of Christ real and relevant in age appropriate ways. Both children’s and youth ministries are led by paid staff though they are assisted by numerous volunteers.
Security is important to us and so we have a secure check-in system to ensure that your children and youth can learn and grow in a safe environment. In addition to this, our paid staff and volunteers are required to submit to background checks and take yearly safe-sanctuary training.

Rev. Robert Barnes

Senior Pastor

Rev. Robert Barnes grew up in the United Methodist Church and experienced his conversion to Christ when he was fifteen years old. Shortly thereafter he received a call to preach. After graduating from Towson State University in 1983, he attended Asbury Theological Seminary and was ordained in 1986.
Pastor Barnes is committed to preaching the full counsel of Scripture and believes that there is no true disagreement between faith and honest questions.
He is married to Linda and they have two children who reside in Texas. Cate is a lawyer and Robert is a medical student.

Worship Leader

Darren Plummer

Darren began playing piano at age 3, and studied piano performance at University of Maryland College Park. He has served as Worship Pastor at various churches in Maryland, Virginia, and Georgia.


Administrative Assistant

Molly Holloway

Molly has been a member of Mount Oak since 2006, and on staff since 2017. When not in the office, she sings with the worship team and the choir, and leads small group Bible study.


Mount Oak