Church News

Church News

First Ladies Chaney, Drake & Williams Honored at High Tea

First Ladies Myesha Chaney (Antioch Church of Long Beach) Isabelle Drake (Greater Ebenezer Mis-sionary Baptist Church) and Debra Williams (McCoy Memorial Baptist Church) are set to be honored at the 17th Annual First Ladies High Tea on September 13, 2014 at the Beverly Hilton Hotel.

L.A. Focus Newspaper created the First Ladies High Tea in 1998 to honor the role of women in the community and women (as well as women of faith) with particular respect to the influence and impact they have in their respective communities.

Church News

Church News

Preachers of L.A. is Back With Season Two

Season 2 of the “Preachers of LA,” docu-series, which broke streaming records as Oxygen’s most-streamed show, premieres August 20th, inviting it’s one million viewers back into the world of six LA pastors: Bishop Noel Jones, Minister Deitrick Haddon, Bishop Clarence McClendon, Pastor Jay Haizlip, Pastor Wayne Chaney and Bishop Ron Gibson.


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First A.M.E. Church Gets New Pastor

Edgar Boyd Appointed Pastor At First A.M.E. Church

What was a drama filled 88th Session of the Southern California Annual Conference was capped off with some pretty big moves, including the appointment of Rev. J. Edgar Boyd as senior pastor of First A.M.E. Church on October 28.

Boyd, who serves as treasurer of the Fifth Episcopal District, had previously served as senior pastor of Bethel A.M.E. Church in San Francisco. He will be replaced by Rev. John Hunter, who was transferred there after a somewhat heated exchange during one of the business sessions as First A.M.E. officials were presenting their annual report.


Hunter had taken issue with a man who was not a delegate speaking from the floor and alleging that the church’s attendance numbers were dramatically down under Hunter’s leadership.

5th District Bishop T. Larry Kirkland then read an anonymous letter threatening the Bishop, his staff and family if Hunter was removed from First A.M.E. Church.

A shocked Hunter said that no one from First AME would have written a letter like that. An investigation as to where the letter might have originated was reported to be underway, according to Kirkland, who had turned the letter over to the FBI and the sheriff.

In other of the district’s big moves, Rev. Joseph Nixon (Ward AME Church) was transferred to the Missouri conference with Rev. Taurus Myhand (formerly of Grant A.M.E. Long Beach) taking over as senior pastor at Ward A.M.E. Church. Rev. C. Dennis Williams (Brookins Community A.M.E. Church) … Finally, Rev. Michael Eagle was transferred from St. Mark A.M.E. Church to St. James A.M.E. Church.

Bishop Kenneth & First Lady Togetta Ulmer Honored

Bishop Kenneth & First Lady Togetta Ulmer were recently honored at a star-studded gala put on by Habitat for Humanity of Greater Los Angeles. Upwards of 1,000 guests including Blair Underwood, Dawnn Lewis, Basketball Wives stars Evelyn Lozada and Shaunie O’Neal and Jonathan Slocumb, turned out for the black tie event that included dinner, dancing and a benefit concert featuring Gladys Knight and Frankie Beverly & Maze.

The event also celebrated an initiative between Faithful Central and Habitat for Humanity of Greater Los Angeles (HFH GLA) to promote and develop healthy homes and healthy families within communities, locally and around the world. As a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization, their mission is to provide the leadership, expertise and resources that enable under-served communities to reach and maintain their optimal level of health and well-being and to empower them to obtain sustainable and affordable housing.

“We are thrilled to expand our relationship with Habitat for Humanity, building homes in two places close to my heart, here locally in Los Angeles and in South Africa”, commented Dr. Kenneth C. Ulmer, Faithful Central’s senior pastor-teacher. “We have a steadfast commitment here at Faithful Central to impact our community and this tremendous partnership keenly reflects our dedication to this mission.  I’m looking forward to an evening of great music. It’s truly an extraordinary event for an extraordinary cause.”

President & CEO of Habitat of Humanity of Greater Los Angeles, Erin Rank echoed Ulmer’s sentiments; “The success of an organization is due in large part to having continuous, visionary leadership. It is with pride that we partner with FCBC in the celebration of the inspired leadership of Bishop and First Lady Ulmer who have walked hand-in-hand with love and faith for over three decades, carrying out God’s plan for Inglewood and the world at large.  Like FCBC, Habitat for Humanity walks in faith to provide decent shelter to all God’s people in need.”

In other local news, the L.A. church community lent their support to Pastor J. Roy Morrison, senior pastor of the Jerusalem Missionary Baptist Church and president of the California United Baptist State Convention on the recent passing of his 22-year old daughter, Jerricca, who had been battling leukemia…Finally, Dr. William M. Brent Sr., pastor emeritus of Evening Star Missionary Baptist Church was also laid to rest last month.


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Church Community Mourns Passing of Pastor Frank Wilson

The Los Angeles church community is mourning the loss of New Dawn Christian Village founder and senior pastor, Frank Wilson. An author, speaker, former award winning Motown record producer and songwriter, Wilson had been battling prostate cancer for nearly two years and died September 27, 2012 at 9:58 a.m. at the City of Hope in Duarte surrounded by members of his immediate family. He was 72.

Earlier this month, the church announced that Wilson had officially retired and that Rev. Alex Pineda would be taking over as senior pastor. Days later, Wilson was hospitalized in intensive care with family and friends gathering at his bedside to lend their love and support.

“We are grateful for all that Pastor Frank was to New Dawn Christian Village. Teacher, friend, mentor and pastor, he shared his life and legacy with us”, said Pineda.

Said Pastor E.V. Hill, who worked with Wilson when he served on staff at Mt. Zion Missionary Baptist Church, “The ministry of my father, Dr. E.V. Hill and Mt. Zion Missionary Baptist Church would be incomplete without the impact that Pastor Frank Wilson made in our lives.

“Pastor Frank Wilson was the vehicle that brought a fresh, spiritual awakening to Mt. Zion through many celebrities, musicians, artists and personalities who were led to Christ and brought to Mt. Zion through the dynamic duo of Pastor Frank and Bunny Wilson.”

Wilson, the founder of Fellowship West International, a trans-denominational umbrella organization for the Christian Entertainer’s Fellowship (CEF) organized in 1977 and the Dayspring Singles & Married Couples Conferences, was the author of “The Master’s Degree--Majoring In Your Marriage” and “Unmasking the Lone Ranger.” 

Before becoming an ordained minister, Wilson enjoyed success as a Motown producer/songwriter. Hits to his credit include “Love Child”. “Keep On Truckin’” and “You’ve Made Me So Very Happy.” The Houston, TX-native has appeared on numerous national TV programs including TBN, CBN, and “The Oprah Winfrey Show.”

He had six children with his wife of nearly 40 years, P. Bunny Wilson, also an acclaimed author and sought out motivational speaker. 

The family is overwhelmed by the outpouring of love by friends, church members and the church community at-large and the esteem in which their father and husband was held.

“We will continue his legacy of loving people more than anything else on earth and loving God above all others,” said daughter Fawn Weaver.

Services are scheduled for Friday, October 5 at 10:30a.m. and will be held at Faithful Central Bible Church. In lieu of flowers, the family is requesting donations made payable to Frank Wilson Ministries.

Gallilee Baptist Church Nearly Destroyed By Fire

L.A. City fire investigators believe arson may be to blame for the fire that nearly destroyed Galilee Baptist Church. The 70-year old church suffered the loss last month after fire crews were called at 4:20 on the afternoon of September 21st to find the structure located at 48th Street near 11th Avenue in the Crenshaw district heavily involved in flames. 

While firefighters were able to save the structure, the sanctuary and classrooms inside were reported to have extensive damage.

Pastor Frank Chaney told parishioners who gathered in a tent outside the damaged structure the following Sunday that “Beyond every dark cloud, the sun is shining.”


Church News

dixonGeremy Dixon Named Senior Pastor of First Church of God…Center of Hope

First Church of  God… Center of Hope has named Geremy L. Dixon to the office of Senior Pastor. Dixon succeeds his father, the late Bishop Gregory L. Dixon, in leading the 120 year-old church.

 “Pastor Geremy is known for his approachable demeanor, integrity, and ability to reach all people wherever they may be on their journey to know Christ,” said Brother Daniel Williams, Chairman of the Board of Directors, First Church of God…Center of Hope. “He is a pastor with tremendous depth and ability. I believe under Pastor Geremy’s leadership, First Church of God will embark on a new level of evangelism and winning souls to Christ!”

“I am so pleased that Geremy Dixon has been confirmed as the new Senior Pastor of First Church of God... Center of Hope in Inglewood, California. He has the spiritual leadership and the love for the church that his father served as pastor for 16 years and no one can do a better job than Geremy,” said Congresswoman Maxine Waters.  “He is well respected by the membership and the community.  I look forward to working with him and supporting him in every way I possibly can.”

 “I’m honored and humbled to have the opportunity to connect with, nurture and support our community,” said Pastor Geremy L. Dixon. “Together with the congregation and board, I know we can infuse Christ and His kingdom into the places that people spend most of their time -- family and home environments, places of business, educational institutions and the public square.”

With over 15 years of experience in the community, Dixon most recently established the Center of Hope Church of Atlanta. Prior to that, Dixon served over 11 years on staff with First Church of God…Center of Hope in Inglewood, Ca.  During this time, he played an integral role in launching several key ministries and in opening the organization’s Hope Family Wellness Center (a part of the former Daniel Freeman Hospital property). Pastor Geremy attended the Southern California School of Ministry and Facultad School of Theology where he earned his Bachelor in Christian Ministry, with a thesis focus on effective succession planning in the local church, which received special honors.

L.A. Hosts National Missionary Baptists

Los Angeles will play host to one of the nation’s largest black religious groups when the 132nd Annual Session of the National Missionary Baptist Convention of America (NMBCA) gets underway on September 3 at the Sheraton Gateway LAX Hotel with co-hosts Dr. E. Wayne Gaddis, Dr. Lovely Haynes and Dr. Melvin V. Wade, Sr. 

With the recent passing of president, Dr. C.C. Robertson earlier this summer, the group is set to elect a new leader during its five-day meet in Los Angeles, presided over by Vice president at-large, Dr. Nehemiah Davis. Speakers include Dr. Wade (a former president of the group), Pastor Denny Davis of St. John Baptist Church in Grand Prairie, TX, Dr. Lester Gillespie of San Antonio, TX and Pastor Fleetwood Irving of the Second Baptist Church of Vallejo. Other highlights include Rev. Harold Pittman directing a 175-voice choir at the Welcome Night Musical.

In national church news: While the National Missionary Baptists are meeting in Los Angeles, over 20,000 delegates will be gathering in Atlanta for the 132nd annual session of the National Baptist Convention, USA, Inc., the largest of the historically African-American Baptist denominations with a reported 7.5 million members.


Church News

Frank Wilson

New Dawn Christian Village Announces Benefit Concert In Support of Frank & Bunny Wilson

New Dawn Christian Village is proud to announce a benefit concert for dynamic leaders, Frank and Bunny Wilson entitled “True Worship” featuring Motown legend Smokey Robinson & Friends.

Sixteen years ago, Bunny Wilson—a gifted speaker and author whose books Liberated Through Submission and Knight in Shining Armor, sold over 100,000 copies—was stricken with an undiagnosed illness that affects her mobility and her speech.

Despite Frank’s own ongoing battle with prostate cancer, the pastor, author and former award winning Motown record producer/songwriter, continues to care for his wife; while seeking medical and spiritual healing.

“Pastor Frank and his wife, Bunny have tirelessly given to improving the quality of life for the community. Their efforts have resulted in successful food drives, seminars on home ownership, and youth mentoring programs. Many have sought their guidance on spiritual and emotional matters and they have always led by example.

Recently, R&B icon Smokey Robinson reached out to them and offered to share his gift. They are humbled by his desire to aid with their overwhelming medical costs.

Wilson, the pastor and founder of New Dawn Christian Fellowship, also established the Christian Entertainer’s Fellowship, and has appeared regularly on local and national TV programs including TBN, CBN, “The PTL Club,” and “The Oprah Winfrey Show”.

The benefit will take place August 18th at the Ramon C. Cortines School of Visual and Performing Arts located at 450 North Grand Avenue. Aside from Robinson, featured guests include Broderick Rice, Marilyn McCoo & Billy Davis, Jr. and the L.A. Inner City Mass Choir.

For more information or tickets, call 213-680-1123.

Inglewood Church Suspends Services

Services were suspended at Christ's Community Church in Inglewood late last month. This as a result of the early July arrest of its pastor, Rev. Gordon Solomon, who remains in jail in lieu of $3 million bail.

The 50-year old pastor, who is due in court later this month, has been charged with nine sex-related felony accounts—including committing lewd acts on a child— in connection with a two year relationship he had with a now 14-year old girl.

Sources close to the church—located on Hindry Avenue— say that membership had been way down since the arrest. “A lot of them have scattered as the church really is not functioning,” said the source who chose to remain anonymous.a
Solomon, who is married and a father, has pled not guilty to the charges at his arraignment and faces up to 26 years in prison if convicted.

Coalition of African-American Pastors Organizes Against Obama

At a recent press conference, Rev. William Owens, Jr., head of the "Mandate for Marriage" initiative and son of the Rev. William Owens, Sr., the founder and president of the Coalition of African-American Pastors (CAAP), announced a nationwide effort against President Obama's support for same-sex marriage, while declaring that the issue is not going to go away.

"It's only going to increase because the very core of America is founded upon Judeo-Christian beliefs. That's debatable to some people but you can't do away with history," Owens stated.

Last month, the group traveled to the NAACP's annual convention to protest the civil rights group's endorsement same-sex marriage.

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