G. McCray, III
The Church Of God In Christ is coming to Northern California for its annual leadership conference, the first time in history that the 100 plus year old organization will meet in California’s capital of Sacramento.
All of the denomination’s leaders, elected and appointed, will attend the weeklong sessions to equip themselves to be even more effective leaders in their religious denomination.
Conference chairman Bishop Jerry Wayne Macklin, pastor of Glad Tidings Church Of God In Christ in the Bay Area and the Second Assistant Presiding Bishop of the church, has successful assembled a team to coordinate a leadership summit that will make COGIC cutting edge for the Twenty-First Century.
“My staff and I have prepared models for leadership for the 21 Century to be cutting edge and successful in their local churches,” said Bishop Macklin.
The Jan. 16 –Jan. 20 sessions will run the gamut from Youth Leadership training to how to effectively use social media to witness and get the word out about local churches. There are also intensive sessions covering topics such as Church Administration Executive Training, Church Budgeting, Organization Auxiliaries and Departments.
One session is entitled Leadership DNA. That session will discuss what it takes to be an effective leader in the church and if leaders are born or made.
Bishop Macklin said that on Monday, Jan. 16, the King holiday, the entire day will be devoted to the youth, giving them an opportunity to speak directly to Presiding Bishop Charles E. Blake in a forum what was extremely successful the previous year in Birmingham.
Monday night, the first service will be dedicated to highlighting the critical role the Church Of God In Christ and Founder Bishop Charles Harrison Mason played in the Civil Rights Movement. Setting the record straight, Dr. King’s final speech was in fact delivered at Mason Temple Church of God In Christ, the church’s world headquarters in Memphis, TN, not at a Masonic Temple as is often erroneously repeated.
“Many people are unaware that Bishop Mason and Dr. King were friends and (that the Bishop) supported the movement,” according to Bishop Macklin. “During the time Bishop O.T. Jones was the Presiding Bishop, Dr. King actually preached at a Youth Congress.”
Church Of God In Christ was involved in many of the significant moments in the history of the Civil Rights Moment. One was the funeral of Malcolm X, held on Feb. 27, 1965, at Faith Temple Church Of God In Christ in Harlem.
The church is also forever embedded in Civil Rights Movement history because of its connection to Emmitt Till, the 14-year-old boy from Chicago who was murdered while visiting his family in Mississippi. He was a COGIC young man, and Bishop L.H. Ford paid to have his remains flown home and for his funeral services.