All in attendance were blessed by the Black Ministry Family Convocation! Attendees met under the theme: “All for Jesus – Know Him, Confess Him, Serve Him.” The convocation was an edifying experience which celebrated two special milestones: the 140th anniversary of Black Ministry in the LCMS, as well as the 500th anniversary of the Reformation.
A significant moment during the convocation was presenting the Servants of God and His People award. This award was given to the seven living pastors who graduated from Immanuel Lutheran College and Seminary; these men are known as the “Immanuel Seven.” The years they spent at this institution, which closed in 1961, was a spiritually formative time in the lives of these pastors. Several of them have served (or resided) in the Southern District. Rev. Dr. William H. Griffin, Rev. Dr. Bryant E. Clancy Jr., Rev. Dr. James B. Marshall, and Rev. Dr. Frazier N. Odom received the special award in person at the convocation (all pictured below). Rev. Dr. Simon Bodley, Rev. James Wiggins Sr., and Rev. Arthur Bodley are the other three award recipients.
Another highlight from the convocation was worship, including inspirational music and passionate preaching which underscored the theme of knowing, confessing, and serving Jesus. Rev. Dr. Ulmer Marshall delivered the address during opening worship, and Rev. Dr. McNair Ramsey delivered the address during the memorial service. The words they shared resonated with worshipers throughout the convocation and beyond, where hearers now apply the messages to ministry on a daily basis.
Pictured below are members of Bethel Lutheran Church in New Orleans, LA, who attended the convocation: Board of Elders Chairman, Mr. Frederick Sylvester; his wife, Cheryl. Also pictured are Calissya, Cowanna, and Calasia Brister – who, too, are members of Bethel. They were among more than 540 convocation attendees.