Hammock Community Church
5299 Oceanshore Boulevard
Palm Coast, FL 32137
A Church History
Hammock Community Church and Johnson Memorial Chapel
The founding members of the interdenominational Church began meeting in private homes in 1947. On January 29, 1948, Mrs. Lillian Johnson deeded the land in memory of her husband and son to the Trustees for ten dollars. There was a stipulation that if a church was not built or ever abandoned, the property would revert back to the Johnson family. Construction began on the sanctuary building and was completed in 1954. On June 27, 1958, the Trustees deeded the title of the land and all improvements to Johnson Memorial Church.
Loving supporters and many fund-raising dinners provided the funds for construction of the sanctuary and then a Fellowship Hall. The Hall became the Community Center, a voting place and the gathering place within the Hammock community. A special bequest made it possible to add Sunday school rooms in 1966. The cemetery adjacent to the Church was opened in 1981 for Church members and their families.
Johnson Memorial Church was blessed with men and women of God, who have served the congregation with love. Reverend Gerald Combs served as pastor from the date of incorporation until 1961 when he left the area briefly. During his absence, Reverend Billy Babbitt from Flagler Beach filled the pulpit until Reverend Combs returned in 1962. The Fellowship Hall bears his name to honor the loving inspiration provided to the Church during his 40 years of service.
In August 1996, Pastor Harry J. Usher was called to serve our Church. Pastor Usher served until his retirement in late 2007. It was during this time that the Church was expanded with construction of a larger sanctuary, a baptismal, and bell tower.
The new Church was constructed and attached to the original Church. The Gerald Combs Fellowship Hall was completely renovated and physically appended to the new Church. The new construction was dedicated the Hammock Community Church on October 22, 2006. After the dedication, the original church building was renamed the Johnson Memorial Chapel.
In spring of 2008, Dr. Doran C. McCarty began serving as senior pastor to our congregation along with an assistant pastor, Franz E. Cornelius. Using their combined experience, commitment, and teachings, they have been great assets in helping the Church fulfill its mission. Franz E. Cornelius retired in April of 2014. Dr. McCarty retired in June of 2017 after a wonderful stint as our Pastor. Before he retired, a 2500 sq. ft. expansion project was initiated with a completion date of February 2018 and dedicated April 8th as the McCarty Wing. Rev. Dr. Oertel served as our interim Pastor until Rev. Dr. William "Bill" Duke officially took the helm on January 7th, 2018. He retired November 12, 2020.
Rev. Dr. David Oertel, Pastoral Care Minister is the Interim Pastor. He is assisted by
Rev. Dr. Darla Turlington, Spiritual Life Minister; Rev. Joe Roberts, Director of Music; Rev. Dr. Ophelia Beier; and Rev. Mike Whalen.