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Episcopal Presiding Bishop Curry to Headline MLK Service in South L.A.
By Staff and Wire Report
Published January 4, 2023

Episcopal Presiding Bishop Michael Curry (Episcopal Church)

The Most. Rev. Michael Curry presiding bishop of the Episcopal Church, comes to South L.A. on Sunday, Jan. 15, at 3 p.m., for the “Power of Love” service at Christ the Good Shepherd Episcopal Church, 3303 W. Vernon Avenue, in the Leimert Park district of Los Angeles.

L.A. Mayor Karen Bass will also attend the worship, which is observed throughout the U.S. as MLK Sunday in honor of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. The national holiday celebrating King’s birth takes place on Monday, Jan. 16. Also, the Right Rev. John Harvey Taylor, bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Los Angeles, will participate.

According to the diocese, the “Power of Love” theme is drawn from King’s insight that “Love is the only force capable of transforming an enemy into a friend.” The theme also echoes Curry’s longstanding international focus on “The Way of Love,” and The Episcopal Church’s new public engagement emphasis titled “Love. Always.”

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Curry gained an international following after viewers around the world witnessed his lively sermon at the wedding of the Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, now known as the Duke and Duchess of Sussex.

He gained additional prominence for his central role in the January 6, 2022, U.S. Capitol evening prayer vigil marking the one-year anniversary of the violent insurrection.

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“Bishop Curry’s is the most important voice in 21st century Christianity. Dr. King was our great prophet of justice in the 20th century,” Taylor said in announcing the service. “On behalf of the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. planning team, I extend thanks to Christ the Good Shepherd Church for their hospitality. But we can’t guarantee that the roof will stay on!”

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Within the Episcopal Diocese of Los Angeles, Christ the Good Shepherd Parish is known for its decades of community outreach, including the construction of the Good Shepherd Manor serving residents with disabilities, and the development of Good Shepherd Homes in Inglewood serving residents 62 and older.

The 90-minute worship is open to the public, however, attendees are asked to register in advance (at https://bit.ly/MLK-service_011523) to assist church officers with seating configuration. Also, The service will be livestreamed via the diocesan Facebook page and YouTube channel.

A dynamic voice for justice and peace, Curry is chief pastor of the Episcopal Church across 16 nations including the United States. He began his nine-year term in 2015 after being elected The Episcopal Church’s first African American presiding bishop.

He appears regularly in network media and is the author of five books. In 2018, Religion News Association named him religion newsmaker of the year.

Throughout his ministry, Bishop Curry has been a prophetic leader, particularly in the areas of racial reconciliation, climate change, evangelism, immigration policy, and marriage equality. The animating vision and message of his ministry is Jesus of Nazareth and his way of radical, sacrificial love, and he regularly reminds Episcopalians they are “the Episcopal branch of the Jesus Movement.”

The descendant of enslaved Africans brought to North America by way of the trans-Atlantic slave routes, Bishop Curry was born in Chicago in 1953. His father was also an Episcopal priest, and after Bishop Curry’s mother died when he was young, he and his sister were raised by their father and grandmother in upstate New York.

Bishop Curry attended public schools in Buffalo, graduated with high honors from Hobart and Williams Smith Colleges, and earned a Master of Divinity degree from Yale Divinity School. He furthered his education at The College of Preachers, Princeton Theological Seminary, Wake Forest University, the Ecumenical Institute at St. Mary’s Seminary, and the Institute of Christian Jewish Studies. He holds honorary doctorates from Yale University, Virginia Theological Seminary, Hobart and William Smith Colleges, and Episcopal Divinity School.

A resident of Raleigh, North Carolina, Bishop Curry is married to Sharon (Clement) Curry, and the couple has two adult daughters, Rachel and Elizabeth.

Books

Bishop Curry is the author of:

  • Love is the Way: Holding on to Hope in Troubled Times
  • The Power of Love: Sermons, Reflections & Wisdom to Uplift and Inspire
  • Following the Way of Jesus: Church’s Teaching for a Changing World
  • Crazy Christians: A Call to Follow Jesus
  • Songs My Grandma Sang

 

Categories: Religion
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