Our History

In 1881, men and women from most of the major denominations, weary of religious division, denominational hierarchies, legalism and prejudice, began searching for Christian unity. Led by leaders such as Daniel S. Warner and Mary Cole, they began a movement that emphasized several commitments:

  • Trusting solely in the Holy Spirit as their guide.

  • Take the Bible as sole authority and Christ as their only creed.

  • Depend on God’s Holy Spirit to unify them with other Christians, regardless of denominational affiliation.

  • To restore holiness to the church


This small group of Christians became known as the Church of God (with general offices in Anderson, IN). Today, over 8,000 congregations trace their roots to this movement of Christian unity. One of these churches is Oakland Mills Church of God in the Oakland Mills Village of Columbia, Maryland.

On October 6, 1987, Rev. and Mrs. Marc A. Farmer shared the vision God had given them with several Christian families.  The vision was to “serve and teach the Gospel to the meek, the brokenhearted, the captive, the bound, and the mourning.”  It was out of Isaiah 61:1-3 and John 12:32 that Rev. Dr. Marc A. Farmer established the church.  The families, who met with Rev. Dr. Farmer, served as a steering committee that assisted with the planning and establishment of the church.  They clearly recognized that Jesus was the foundation and that their purpose was to continue the ministry Jesus started.  As the steering committee began working to establish the church, more families became a part of the vision. The first worship service was held on November 1, 1987, and the stated charter was filed within the same month as well.  This small congregation remained a faithful witness to the life transforming power of Jesus Christ.

On July 2, 2015, Richard M. Smith along with his wife Camille and children answered the call to continue the work at Oakland Mills, deciding to build on the foundation that had been laid by the late Rev. Dr. Marc A. Farmer.  Through strategic changes, restructuring, passion, and the leading of the Holy Spirit, the church has begun to re-position itself to be the movement that Jesus has called the church to be and to reach people for Christ.  Additionally, the church is focused on emphasizing the specific message that was demonstrated through the life, death, resurrection, and ministry of Jesus Christ to each person no matter who they are or what they’ve done.  That message is expressed in the following words, “You are worth dying for.” 

Strategically located between Baltimore and Washington D.C., OMCOG is able to serve a diverse group of people. We aim to: Teach uncompromisingly, love unconditionally, and live unwaveringly. We want to mobilize passionate Christ-followers to be a part of the movement that Jesus started, give of their lives to make an impact, and influence the culture.

We invite you to join the movement.