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Bishop T. Larry Kirkland, Sr., concluded the 88th Session of the Southern California Annual Conference of the A.M.E. Church on October 13 after overseeing worship services, business sessions, and activities to guide and strengthen the 50+ churches comprising the conference.
As the presiding prelate of the denomination’s Fifth Episcopal District, Bishop Kirkland, along with Mrs. Mary L. Kirkland, Episcopal Supervisor, led the convocation from October 7 -13 at the Sheraton LAX Gateway Hotel.
The theme was ‘Rebuilding the Walls – Hand Me Another Brick’ based on Nehemiah 2:17. The Rev. Dr. Vernon S. Burroughs, the Rev. Denise J. Burroughs and the members of Grant A.M.E. Church in Los Angeles served as hosts.
In addition to church business, Bishop Kirkland continued the A.M.E. legacy of addressing social issues by providing a session on the Affordable Care Act (ACA) or ‘Obama Care.’ During a presentation by Mrs. Jackie Dupont-Walker, attendees received information on the elements of the historic law and the importance of health care coverage.
Also, the Conference adopted a resolution supporting President Barack Obama and ACA and condemning the actions of Republicans in the House of Representative to discredit the president’s work.
Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti also visited the conference and committed to work with the A.M.E. Church to promote local hiring of African Americans on major construction projects and on developing re-entry programs to assist the formerly incarcerated.
At the Closing and Commissioning Service, Bishop Kirkland announced pastoral assignments. The reappointments included the Rev. J. Edgar Boyd of First -LA, Dr. Kelvin Calloway of Bethel-LA, the Rev. Taurus Myhand of Ward, the Rev. Gregory McLeod of Brookins Community, the Rev. Darryl Walker of New Philadelphia, Dr. Clyde Oden of Bryant Temple, the Rev. Cedric Alexander of Price Chapel, the Rev. Rosalynn Brookins of Walker Temple, the Rev. John Cager of Second, the Rev. Mark Whitlock of Christ Our Redeemer, and the Rev. Michael Eagle of Grant-Long Beach.
New appointments included the Rev. LeSean Tarkington to Brown Memorial-Pasadena, the Rev. Melanie Mays to Bethel–Monrovia, the Rev. Antonio Dupree to Grace-Temecula, the Rev. Harrison Ridgeway, Jr., to Bethel-Barstow, the Rev. Dwayne Jackson to St. James, the Rev. Anthony Hughes to St. Paul-Berkeley, and the Rev. Leslie White to Bethel Memorial-San Diego.
The Rev. Delman Howard of Holy Trinity-Las Vegas and Dr. Burroughs of Grant-LA received temporary assignments to their parishes with permanent appointments expected at the Fifth District Planning Conference in St. Louis on October 28 and 29.