When engaging with members of Reid Temple AME in Glenn Dale, MD, one immediately witnesses a vibrant community united by faith, service, and fellowship.

This congregation has deep roots in environmental stewardship as part of their call to minister to the spiritual, intellectual, physical, emotional, and environmental needs of all people by spreading the word of the Gospels. Originating during an era of racial segregation, the journey to secure the right to worship was unimaginably difficult for so many people of color.

Reid Temple AME, a Christ-centered church that embraces people of all ages and backgrounds, embodies the essence of community building. Despite numerous challenges, their unwavering faith has only strengthened their congregation. Their current place of worship accommodates up to 3,000 members and includes an educational wing for children and adults, as well as dedicated space for weekly senior activities.

Embracing their expansive church grounds, Interfaith Partners for the Chesapeake has had the privilege of working with their members to plant 15 trees through the Trees for Sacred Places Program. Families, including the daughter of the church's founding father, participated in the project's kickoff, eager to contribute to a meaningful act of service that would resonate with future generations.

"The newly planted trees are the wise beginning to a living end."
~ Dr. Mark E. Whitlock, Jr.

Ready to work and learn more about their trees, members encouraged their family members young and small to take part in an act of service sure to be celebrated by generations to come. The indispensable support and guidance of their Senior Pastor, Rev. Dr. Mark E. Whitlock, Jr., has played a crucial role in enabling these endeavors. Rev. Whitlock actively engages with the church to champion environmental justice projects and advocacy aligned with the Four Pillars in support of the AME 2nd District's Environmental Justice Ministry:

  •       Pillar One – Sustaining the Quality of Water
  •       Pillar Two- Keeping God’s Environment Safe and Clean
  •       Pillar Three - Protecting God’s Land and Air
  •       Pillar Four – Inspiring Intergenerational Justice Action

Guided by the Four Pillars, Reid Temple AME recently had an environmental site assessment conducted through the Maryland Sea Grant Extension. This assessment identified some areas of opportunity that the congregation could work together on, such as expanding conservation landscaping and possible storm water management practices to help reduce runoff. The enduring dedication to stewardship and advocacy shines through as their members unite in faith, collaboratively discovering solutions that contribute to climate change mitigation and the nationwide mission of fostering stronger, healthier families and communities.

Sarah Redden


Program & Outreach Coordinator (Montgomery, Frederick, Prince George's, DMV)