Harvey Cedars Bible Conference Inc

The information in this column was provided to MinistryWatch by the ministry itself. It was last updated 7/10/2021. To update the information in this column, please email: info@ministrywatch.com


We are a Christian conference and retreat center nestled between the beautiful Barnegat Bay and the Atlantic Ocean on Long Beach Island. The body of Christ has enjoyed gathering and growing with us for generations. We operate year-round to provide affordable conferences, retreats, family vacations, and other events.

Contact information

Mailing address:
Harvey Cedars Bible Conference Inc
12 Cedars Ave
Cedars, NJ 08008

Website: hcbible.org

Phone: 609-494-5689

Email: receptionist@hcbible.org

Organization details

EIN: 216000708

CEO/President: Jon Oldham


Board size: 0

Founder: Jack and Eleanor Murray

Ruling year: 1952

Tax deductible: Yes

Fiscal year end: 12/31

Member of ECFA: Yes

Member of ECFA since: 2005


Each year, thousands of college and high school students come to the conference to learn more about God's Word and the person of Christ. Additional thousands come as families, couples, singles, pastors, missionaries, and schools throughout the year.

Mission statement

Our mission is for HCBC to be an environment where Christ finds people and changes lives.

Statement of faith

We believe:

the Bible is the inspired, infallible, authoritative Word of God

there is one God, eternally existent in three persons: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit

Jesus Christ was fully God and fully man

regeneration by the Holy Spirit is essential for the salvation of lost and sinful people

in Jesus Christ's virgin birth, His sinless life, His miracles, His vicarious atoning death through the shedding of His blood, His bodily resurrection, His ascension to heaven, and His personal return in power and glory

in the present ministry of the Holy Spirit by whose indwelling the Christian is enabled to live a godly life

in the resurrection of both the saved and the lost; those that are saved unto the resurrection of life and those that are lost unto the resurrection of damnation

in the spiritual unity of believers in our Lord Jesus Christ

The sixty-six books of the Bible are the inspired Word of God, the complete revelation of His will for the salvation of human beings. They are true in all they affirm, without error as originally written, and the only infallible and sufficient rule for faith and life.

The one true and living God, who exists eternally as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, reveals Himself in the Bible and the world as Creator, Preserver, and sovereign Ruler of all things. He is infinite in His wisdom and knowledge, almighty in His power, unchangeable in His love, and righteous in all His ways.

Adam and Eve were created in God's image to have fellowship with Him. Tempted by Satan, they rebelled against God and were alienated from Him. As a result, they and their descendants became guilty, subject to sin's power, inclined toward disobedience to God's law, and unable to please God apart from His saving grace.

Jesus Christ, the Son of God, while remaining fully divine, became fully human through a miraculous conception and virgin birth. He lived a life of perfect obedience to the Father and died a substitutionary death, thereby reconciling to God all who believe in Him and ensuring their salvation from sin and its results. He achieved victory over death and the powers of evil, rose bodily from the grave, and ascended into heaven where, as the only mediator between God and humanity, He continually intercedes for His people.

The Holy Spirit of God implements the purposes of God. He applies the saving work of Jesus Christ to sinful human beings, giving them a new life, bringing them into fellowship with God, and equipping them for godly living and service.

Salvation is deliverance from alienation, guilt, bondage, and death, as well as restoration of fellowship, righteousness, freedom, and life for all who trust in Jesus Christ alone. It originates in and is sustained by God's sovereign and loving grace apart from any human merit, is based solely on Christ's work, is received by faith alone, and is expressed in a lifetime of developing holiness, obedience, and love.

The Church is the Body of Christ, the community of all believers who are united to Christ and to one another by the Holy Spirit. The Church is called to worship God and to demonstrate His gracious character in the world by proclaiming the gospel, making disciples from all nations, observing baptism and the Lord's supper, maintaining the unity and purity of the body, and seeking to apply the truths of Scripture to the needs of all people.

At the close of this age, Christ will return to raise the dead, establish His Kingdom on earth, and judge all people. The unrighteous will experience everlasting, conscious suffering in hell, but the righteous will experience everlasting life and fellowship with God in Heaven.

As a non-profit Protestant Evangelical Christian organization, Harvey Cedars Bible Conference reserves the right to refuse or cancel services or facility use to any individual(s) or group whose willful activity, teaching, or conduct detracts from its Christian witness or is contrary to this statement of faith.

Transparency grade


To understand our transparency grade, click here.

Financial efficiency ratings

Sector: Camps/Conference Centers

CategoryRatingOverall rankSector rank
Overall efficiency rating642 of 99921 of 23
Fund acquisition rating771 of 100118 of 25
Resource allocation rating313 of 100111 of 25
Asset utilization rating630 of 99918 of 23

Financial ratios

Funding ratiosSector median20192018201720162015
Return on fundraising efforts Return on fundraising efforts =
Fundraising expense /
Total contributions
Fundraising cost ratio Fundraising cost ratio =
Fundraising expense /
Total revenue
Contributions reliance Contributions reliance =
Total contributions /
Total revenue
Fundraising expense ratio Fundraising expense ratio =
Fundraising expense /
Total expenses
Other revenue reliance Other revenue reliance =
Total other revenue /
Total revenue
Operating ratiosSector median20192018201720162015
Program expense ratio Program expense ratio =
Program services /
Total expenses
Spending ratio Spending ratio =
Total expenses /
Total revenue
Program output ratio Program output ratio =
Program services /
Total revenue
Savings ratio Savings ratio =
Surplus (deficit) /
Total revenue
Reserve accumulation rate Reserve accumulation rate =
Surplus (deficit) /
Net assets
General and admin ratio General and admin ratio =
Management and general expense /
Total expenses
Investing ratiosSector median20192018201720162015
Total asset turnover Total asset turnover =
Total expenses /
Total assets
Degree of long-term investment Degree of long-term investment =
Total assets /
Total current assets
Current asset turnover Current asset turnover =
Total expenses /
Total current assets
Liquidity ratiosSector median20192018201720162015
Current ratio Current ratio =
Total current assets /
Total current liabilities
Current liabilities ratio Current liabilities ratio =
Total current liabilities /
Total current assets
Liquid reserve level Liquid reserve level =
(Total current assets -
Total current liabilities) /
(Total expenses / 12)
Solvency ratiosSector median20192018201720162015
Liabilities ratio Liabilities ratio =
Total liabilities /
Total assets
Debt ratio Debt ratio =
Debt /
Total assets
Reserve coverage ratio Reserve coverage ratio =
Net assets /
Total expenses


Balance sheet
Receivables, inventories, prepaids$124,805$100,381$104,428$88,859$153,557
Short-term investments$2,407,449$2,039,715$2,008,792$1,678,898$1,569,309
Other current assets$0$0$0$0$0
Total current assets$3,456,019$4,035,647$3,473,103$2,780,372$2,648,626
Long-term investments$0$0$0$0$0
Fixed assets$9,842,280$8,717,419$8,412,514$8,305,993$8,196,644
Other long-term assets$0$0$0$0$0
Total long-term assets$9,842,280$8,717,419$8,412,514$8,305,993$8,196,644
Total assets$13,298,299$12,753,066$11,885,617$11,086,365$10,845,270
Payables and accrued expenses$189,540$218,094$117,282$123,163$119,449
Other current liabilities$0$0$0$0$0
Total current liabilities$189,540$218,094$117,282$123,163$119,449
Due to (from) affiliates$0$0$0$0$0
Other long-term liabilities$155,969$160,436$166,133$144,682$160,566
Total long-term liabilities$155,969$160,436$166,133$146,159$179,771
Total liabilities$345,509$378,530$283,415$269,322$299,220
Net assets20192018201720162015
Without donor restrictions$12,795,475$11,957,415$11,376,927$10,658,475$10,397,403
With donor restrictions$157,315$417,121$225,275$158,568$148,647
Net assets$12,952,790$12,374,536$11,602,202$10,817,043$10,546,050
Revenues and expenses
Total contributions$473,530$949,422$539,516$343,544$395,921
Program service revenue$2,557,695$2,418,996$2,428,461$2,456,367$2,394,820
Membership dues$0$0$0$0$0
Investment income$113,218$144,429$98,636$72,709$93,149
Other revenue$55,467$51,598$63,753$37,458$38,829
Total other revenue$2,726,380$2,615,023$2,590,850$2,566,534$2,526,798
Total revenue$3,199,910$3,564,445$3,130,366$2,910,078$2,922,719
Program services$2,464,593$2,152,212$2,145,761$2,251,159$2,074,036
Management and general$339,307$318,442$292,964$377,541$366,373
Total expenses$2,893,414$2,553,217$2,515,226$2,704,461$2,512,115
Change in net assets20192018201720162015
Surplus (deficit)$306,496$1,011,228$615,140$205,617$410,604
Other changes in net assets$0$0$0$0$0
Total change in net assets$306,496$1,011,228$615,140$205,617$410,604


Jonathan OldhamExec Direc/S$120,659

Compensation data as of: 12/31/2019

Response from ministry

No response has been provided by this ministry.

The information below was provided to MinistryWatch by the ministry itself. It was last updated 7/10/2021. To update the information below, please email: info@ministrywatch.com


Reverend Jack Murray was a student at Wheaton College when revival swept the campus between 1935 and 1936. He spent the rest of his life in evangelism.

As a 27-year-old associate pastor of a large Presbyterian church in Chester, PA, and the National Director of the Summer Bible School Movement (later known as AWANA), Murray and his friend Bill Ritchie were looking for a place to establish a permanent Bible Conference.

While fishing, they found the old, dilapidated Harvey Cedars Hotel on the beautiful windswept, sun-drenched Long Beach Island and had the vision to see its potential. Intrigued by the building, they went in, found the entrance filled with bird feathers, and decided then and there that it would make an ideal retreat center once restored. They located owner Mabel Bayard and offered her the $7,500 they could afford to raise, and it was theirs.

America's churches were struggling for their souls theologically, and Murray started Harvey Cedars Presbyterian Bible Conference to call the church back to the Bible and the historic Christian faith. It took an incredible amount of hard work to restore the old hotel, but with lots of help, it was able to open by the end of the summer. Meetings started on August 1, 1941.

Jack had met his future wife Eleanor Stephens when they were students at Wheaton College. Eleanor was the daughter of one of the leading national evangelists at that time, George T. Stephens. While at college, Jack and Eleanor worked for her father over the summer and traveled for evangelistic ministry on weekends. A great revival at Wheaton College led them to commit themselves to a life of evangelism and each other.

The Bible Conference only functioned in the summer. The Murrays traveled the rest of the year in week-long evangelistic crusades with great success. Multitudes of people came to faith in Christ through Jack and Eleanor's crusades and Jack's daily radio programs and while staying at HCBC. During their time, the chapel and dining room opened, and the tradition of the Summer Staff Choir, directed by Eleanor, began. The ministry broadened in outreach and nationally known figures such as Frances Schaeffer, Vernon Grounds, and Jack Wyrtzen frequently spoke here.

Through ten years of sacrifice and hard work, Jack and Eleanor laid the conference's foundation. Their legacy lives on as two of their children, George Murray and Sarah Eremic, continue to contribute to the ministries at HCBC as speakers.

While in his teens, Albert Oldham was impressed by Murray's preaching and decided to volunteer for Summer Staff. He ended up serving for three summers and that decision changed his life. After hearing Pastor George Schmeiser from Philadelphia speak one evening in the conference's chapel (then in the south end of the hotel), Al changed his plan to attend law school. Instead, he attended Wheaton College and Faith Seminary, where Jack Murray taught. Upon graduation, Jack asked 23-year-old Al to become his assistant at the conference for the summer of 1951.

By the time Al joined Jack Murray, Jack was handling many jobs. Jack pastored and ran the Philadelphia Church of the Open Door's evangelism ministry, spoke on a daily radio broadcast, taught two days a week at the seminary, and managed the staff and programs of the summer Bible Conference. At the end of July 1951, Jack decided to resign from the conference after his doctor told him he was under too much pressure and needed a long rest.

The Board asked Al to keep the conference running until they could find a replacement for Rev. Murray. However, as Rev. Al likes to share, "They couldn't find anyone else to do the job for 44 years!"

Many more changes came to the conference under Al Oldham's tenure. With God's providence and through sacrifice and perseverance, HCBC became debt-free and remains so to this day. It changed from a summer-only camp to a year-round retreat and conference center.

A small bookstore was built on the Chapel's grounds with wood from houses ruined by the March Storm of 1962. Other additions include the indoor pool, Poolside Lodge (formerly Driftwood Lodge), and former gym.

Al's wife, Dorothy, continued Eleanor Murray's tradition by directing the Summer Staff Choir and delighted visitors with her beautiful violin music. Dorothy also sewed all the Summer Staff girls' uniforms. All four of Al and Dorothy's children have worked at the conference over the years.

Al resigned as Director in 1995. He has served the Lord at HCBC for over 72 years-three years on Summer Staff, 44 years as Director, and over 25 years on the Board-and he continues to serve as a Director-at-Large on the Board today.

Al Oldham's son Jon became Assistant Director of Harvey Cedars Bible Conference in 1990 while overseeing Food Service and Maintenance. He has been Executive Director since 1995. Jon's passion is for the conference to be a place that stays true to its original purpose-to be a place where people preach the gospel and experience changed lives after encounters with the living God.

Under Jon's leadership, the conference had its facilities improved and expanded over the years to meet guests' growing needs and expectations and increase the ministry's capacity and opportunities. Jon served as general contractor for Bayview Lodge's construction in 1994 and oversaw its expansion in 2014. He then managed the old hotel's renovation (officially renamed to the Victorian Hotel), which added conference rooms, stair towers, offices, and air conditioning.

In 2011, the Davis Center gym and activity center opened its doors, adding greatly-needed meeting rooms and recreation for families, teens, and retreat groups. The former gym was renovated in 2016 and became The Cedars and The Avenue - a large multi-purpose meeting space and a cafe-style lounge and snack shop.

The Marsh dorm building opened in 2019 and provides accommodations for Summer Staff as well as year-round retreats. The Cove, a second dorm building, is currently planned, and major renovation of the historic Boy's Dorm building is to be completed in summer 2021.

Jon has kept HCBC's mission in view through all the renovations and building: to be a place where Christ meets people and changes lives. He continues to develop the mission to provide quality programs, excellent facilities, and a rich environment for guests and staff of all ages to learn about Jesus Christ, become more like Him, and be trained for leadership in the home, church, and community.

Continuing the tradition of full family involvement, all three of Jon's children served on Summer Staff and continue to be an essential part of HCBC's ongoing story.

When HCBC began, so did the Summer Staff ministry. The high-school and college-aged staff served food, cleaned rooms, and maintained the grounds for room and board only in the early summers.

Today's summer staffers are encouraged in their personal and spiritual growth through carefully planned programming, including chapel sessions. Hundreds of those who served on Summer Staff have gone on to become pastors and missionaries.

HCBC expanded its ministries to local women with the monthly Bible study gathering, The Grove (formerly GraceBook), in 2012, and to college-aged young adults with the "gap-year" educational program, Waypoint, in 2019. Each carefully-designed program equips people to see God's guidance in their lives through Bible study, mentorship, and practical application throughout the year.

God takes people who are broken and run down, restores them, and uses them for His honor and glory. The old Harvey Cedars Hotel can tell the same story. Through the eyes of Jack Murray, God envisioned what LBI's last remaining great hotel of its time could become, restored it to the best condition it has ever seen, and has been using it to change the lives of the thousands of people who come and stay in its rooms each year.

Who would ever put a business plan together where you take something past its usable life, reclaim it, and put it back into use? It does not make sense in human terms, but it makes perfect sense in God's economy and has done so for all these years. Reclaiming lives makes sense in God's eternal plan as well. He takes run-down lives and makes them new again. Jesus Christ still searches hearts, reveals His Father's character, changes lives, and calls disciples to follow Him as He did by the Sea of Galilee in the days of His flesh.

Program accomplishments


You may donate toward the general operational funds of HCBC, toward specific areas such as construction and renovations or the Summer Staff and Waypoint programs, or towards a "guest scholarship" for families or youth who have limited income so that they can experience God the way you have over the years. Whatever it may be, thank you for thinking of us!