Former NBA player Stan McKenzie, husband of first woman AME Church bishop, dead at 76


(RNS) — Stan McKenzie, the first male episcopal supervisor of missionary work in the African Methodist Episcopal Church and the husband of Bishop Vashti Murphy McKenzie, has died. The Christian Recorder, the official publication of the denomination, announced his death, which occurred on Wednesday (July 21). Stan McKenzie, 76, died in Dallas after a brief … Read more

Retiring Bishop Vashti McKenzie, first AME Church woman prelate, reflects on a groundbreaking career


(RNS) — Just-retired Bishop Vashti Murphy McKenzie is an apologist for an adaptive style of leadership. It’s what has helped her succeed as the first woman to hold many roles in the African Methodist Episcopal Church. And it’s a style of leadership she said was needed during the pandemic. “Adaptive leadership means that you are … Read more

Four new bishops — and first biracial bishop — elected to AME Church


(RNS) — Four new bishops were elected to the African Methodist Episcopal Church on Saturday (July 10), the final day of the denomination’s General Conference in Orlando, Florida. Four general officers and two judicial council members were also elected. The Rev. Francine A. Brookins is the first biracial bishop to be elected, and Advocate Thabile … Read more

AME General Conference votes to form committee to study LGBTQ issues


(RNS) — A day after its General Conference voted down a bill that would have allowed clergy to perform same-sex marriages, the African Methodist Episcopal Church, meeting in Orlando, Florida, passed a resolution on Thursday (July 8) to appoint a sexual ethics discernment committee to make recommendations to the denomination about LGBTQ matters.      … Read more

AME General Conference debate on same-sex marriage continues after bill is voted down


(RNS) — A bill concerning same-sex marriage failed to pass on its second reading Wednesday (July 7) at the African Methodist Episcopal Church General Conference, the denomination’s quadrennial meeting taking place in Orlando, Florida, this week. The proposed bill was submitted by Ravi K. Perry, chair of the political science department at Howard University who … Read more

We need a better strategy to plant Black and brown churches


(RNS) — Union General Gordon Granger arrived in Galveston, Texas, on June 19, 1865. Granger delivered General Orders No. 3, which read, “The people of Texas are informed that, in accordance with a proclamation from the Executive of the United States, all slaves are free. This involves an absolute equality of rights and rights of … Read more