On November 8, 1970, a devoted group of 11 met at the home of Reverend Leroy Clay, Sr. with a vision to start a church where “everybody is somebody”. This group consisting of Reverend Leroy Clay, Sr., Leroy Clay, Jr., Marc W. Clay, Mrs. Carolyn Clay, Ms. Francis Beckwith, Mrs. Exie McIntosh, Mr. Neam Winston, Jr., Mrs. Mazel Winston, Ms. Jinervinne Winston, Ms. Darlene Winston, and Mr. Roger Tyler, left that day with a plan to start a church, and the following Sunday, November 15, 1970, Divine Love Baptist Church held its inaugural service.
Leading up to the inaugural service, Divine Love was without a home. Reverend Clay set out trusting in God and was led to speak to the late Reverend Dr. Willie B. Allen, then Pastor of the Upper Room Baptist Church. Reverend Dr. Allen opened the doors of the old Upper Room Church for Divine Love to use until they could purchase an edifice.
In 1975, Divine Love Baptist Church held its first service at 4303 Sheriff Road NE Washington, DC. For over thirty years, Reverend Clay preached the Gospel and ministered to the needs of the church membership. During this time, God sent many faithful members who helped build this church. Members like Mother Ada Day, Mother Elsie Washington, and Mother Mary Pollard were great workers in the vineyard.
Under his leadership, three men of God were called to preach the Gospel; Reverend Paul James, Reverend Leroy Clay III, and Reverend Anthony White. In September 2003, Reverend Leroy Clay III answered the call to ministry and preached his trial sermon. Soon thereafter, Reverend Clay began delivering the preached Word of God to the members every Sunday.