Dr. Craig L. Oliver, Sr. has a tremendous passion for God’s Word coupled with a love for God’s people. He has a contagious spirit of generosity that overflows throughout every facet of his ministry. Having received his mandate from God, Dr. Oliver, obediently fulfills his calling as Senior Pastor of Elizabeth Baptist Church and is joined in unity with Mrs. Chi’Ira Oliver.
Called to ministry at the age of 16 at Greater Grand Central Missionary Baptist Church, under the Leadership of the late Reverend Moses D. Holmes, Dr. Oliver spoke the words that would characterize his mission and his ministry; “I will stand for the Lord!” It is this mantra that has helped to straighten his backbone as he spread the word of God to people in cities throughout the nation. In 1993, Dr. Oliver’s obedience to the Lord led him to Elizabeth Baptist Church where he was ordained by Reverend James E. Hightower Sr. He was called to the pastorate of Elizabeth Baptist Church on August 20,1995 and continues in this service today.
Dr. Oliver has seen the fulfillment of Ephesians 3:20 in his life - “Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us”. He leads a ministry of over 15,902 faithful members and has positioned Elizabeth Baptist Church as not only one of the most prominent congregations in the Atlanta area, but in the United States. Elizabeth Baptist Church currently holds six services each Sunday between EBC: Atlanta, EBC: Fairburn, EBC: Smyrna and EBC: Douglasville; a Going Deeper in the Word Bible Study service on Wednesday and Thursday, and a Saturday Night Live service.
Dr. Oliver was directed by God to enhance the mission of Elizabeth Baptist Church by re-focusing on simple yet powerful communication pillars that all members can remember and worship by: Restoring Hope, Empowering People, Advancing the Kingdom, and Leaving a Legacy, also known as the R.E.A.L. Experience of Elizabeth Baptist Church.
Elizabeth Baptist Church is making a difference in the lives of members and the entire Atlanta community. Dr. Oliver is covered with anointing, divine favor and obedience which God is using mightily to make a change in the lives of people. His vision is uncompromisingly clear, with one central principle — to build and develop a kingdom of empowered, equipped people for God. Dr. Oliver has taken the Gospel into national and international communities of the world. His worship services are broadcast via television to cities desperate for truth. Under his leadership, the church has completed mission work in over six countries and continues to visit additional countries.
Dr. Oliver received his Master of Arts Degrees in Biblical/Theological Studies and Leadership from Luther Rice Theological Seminary, a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Education and Religious Studies from Clark Atlanta University and a Doctor of Ministry in Preaching the Literary Forms of the Bible from Gordon Conwell Theological Seminary. Dr. Oliver serves as a spiritual advisor to a growing and diverse membership of Elizabeth Baptist Church. He has been recognized by the Senate of Georgia and Fulton County for his outstanding commitment to ministering to the spiritual needs of his community.
Dr. Oliver’s joy and balance is his family, First Lady Chi’Ira and three beautiful children; son Craig Jr. and daughters Corrie Kené and Charlee Reign Oliver. As a dynamic ministry family, they are dedicated servants of God, and stand as a testament to what God can do in the lives of true believers!