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Memphis, Tenn. - His Grace, the Most Rt. Rev. Charles E. Blake Sr., native of Arkansas and longtime resident of Los Angeles, Calif., was named the fifth presiding bishop of the multimillion-member religious denomination, the Church of God in Christ, Inc. Bishop Blake was named during the Annual Spring business meeting in Memphis, Tenn. on April 10.
“We are on safe ground to address Bishop Blake as the presiding bishop,“ said His Grace, the Rt. Rev. J.O. Patterson Jr., chairman of the General Assembly, during remarks at the session.
“Bishop Blake has served faithfully as the first administrative assistant presiding bishop of the Church of God in Christ under the stellar leadership of the former presiding bishop, His Grace the Most Rt. Rev. Gilbert E. Patterson, who passed away. Bishop Patterson led the church into an area of heightened spirituality and organizational peace,” added the chairman of the General Assembly.
“The peace continues and the church will do well in the hands of the current leadership and the General Board,” said Bishop Blake.
Bishop Blake is the successful pastor of the West Angeles Church of God in Christ in Los Angeles, Calif. He pastors the largest church and presides over the largest diocese in the Church of God in Christ.
“We will celebrate the glorious past of our Church, not embrace it; we will embrace our future,” stated Bishop Blake.
Members attending the Annual Call Session of the Church of God in Christ, expressed their eagerness to see Bishop Blake succeed the former presiding Bishop G.E. Patterson, as is the precedent of the organization when an elected officer does not complete their term.
The Church of God in Christ will return to Memphis in November for its Centennial Convocation, which will be rampant with activities, religious services, world-wide web casting, parade and grand celebration of the organization’s 100th convocation since 1907.
“The eyes of the world will be upon us, and this will be the Church of God in Christ’s finest hour,” said Bishop Jerry Macklin, Centennial coordinator for the General Board of the Church of God in Christ.
Bishop Blake expressed his commitment to “continue the peace of the church, and move swiftly to sharpen its organizational management, while maintaining the spiritual fervor of the Church of God in Christ, Inc.”