History

Over sixty years ago, a small group of families with common heritage desired to have a church that aligned itself with the Evangelical Free Church of America in this area. On April 15, 1951, in River Edge NJ, the first meeting was held at the American Legion Hall. On November 30, 1951, a meeting was called to organize and incorporate in Cresskill NJ. The original membership numbered thirty-four.

1952 saw the purchase of our present property and parsonage. Rev. Ray Martin was called as the first pastor and the church building began being built. It was dedicated two years later, on April 11, 1954. Rev. John McLennan came as the second pastor in 1957 and established the building of our present sanctuary, which was completed in 1961. In 1962, Rev. Phil Gammon was called as the third pastor, and under his ministry, the building of the gym and educational facility was completed in 1968. The church continued to grow in strength under strong teaching ministry of the next pastor, Rev. Wayne Lehsten starting in 1973. Rev. Robert Zimmer developed a stable and long-term ministry as the church’s fifth pastor starting in 1978 until 1996. Rev. Peter Johnson was called as the sixth pastor starting in 1998 until 2007. Under his ministry, many new people came into the church as several long-time members retired and moved away. Several new ministries began such as ESL and Body & Soul. Currently, the church is pastored by Rev. Ruben Cabrera who began his ministry here in 2009.

Northern Valley has been known as a church that gives generously to see that God’s work is done. With great personal sacrifice, the facilities were built. With even greater service, many have come to Christ, been nurtured in their faith and fully equipped to then share their faith with others. We have dedicated ourselves to world missions throughout our history and our missions thrust has grown to where we give a substantial part of our annual budget to fulfilling the Great Commission of Matthew 28. While several have gone forth as “home grown” missionaries over the years, the missions field has started to come to our doorsteps. Our local congregation is no exception and has changed to reflect our love in reaching the world for Jesus Christ. We presently have 19 different language groups other than English represented in the church as well as many who call English their first language. It is our prayer that God will continue to be glorified through His ministry here, across our land and throughout the world.