Church News: Stephen Davis Named to New Birth
New Birth Missionary Baptist Church has announced that Stephen A. Davis
has been selected to secede the late Bishop Eddie Long as senior pastor.
Davis had been serving as senior pastor, president and board chairman of New Birth Birmingham in Alabama and was named by Long as his successor before his death.
Upwards of 6,500 turned out for the funeral of Bishop Eddie Long, senior pastor of New Birth Missionary Baptist Church, one of the largest congregations in the nation. Speakers included Former Georgia governor Roy E. Barnes, Bishops Kenneth C. Ulmer, Dale C. Bronner, and Tudor Bismark, Trumpet Awards founder Xernona Clayton and Football Hall of Famer Deion Sanders, who said, “This was a father figure to me. This man taught me so much of how to even be a man.' “This man is real and just perhaps, perhaps, perhaps all the media, all the naysayers, all the doubters, perhaps, perhaps you were wrong about this man'”.
Long, who died of cancer on January 15, was 63. Rev. Michael Fisher was among L.A. pastors paying their respects. Said Fisher, "Undeniably he was an innovator and he shifted the perspective of traditional church, especially in the Baptist realm. He shifted the paradigm of how we do church…how we thought of church.
In a statement, Bernice King (daughter of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.), who was an elder with the church until 2011 passed along her heartfelt prayers and condolences.
"As I reflect on his life,” King stated, “I am especially remembering Bishop Long's support during some of the most difficult times in my life