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God Our Father, Christ Our Redeemer, Holy Spirit Our Comforter, Humankind Our Family


The Mission of the African Methodist Episcopal Church is to minister to the spiritual, intellectual, physical, emotional, and environmental needs of all people by spreading Christ's liberating gospel through word and deed. At every level of the Connection and in every local church, the African Methodist Episcopal Church shall engage in carrying out the spirit of the original Free African Society, out of which the AME Church evolved: that is, to seek out and save the lost, and serve the needy.


111 North Cherry Street, Lebanon, Oh 45036 (513) 932-7919 (office) (937)372-1083 (fax) Bethellebanoname@gmail.com Ricardo L. Lewis, Pastor Karen R. Schaeffer. Associate Pastor

Greetings in the Precious Name of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

One-hundred and fifty-years Abounding in Faith, Grace and Love, what a testimony to the ancestor who preceded us, who worked tirelessly to meet the obligations of the Church and keep the doors open Sunday-afterSunday.

Since coming to Bethel almost a year ago, I have found the congregation full of spirit that far exceeds its size. An abundance of ideas flow from the mouths of members and friends on ways to strengthen the Church’s presence in the community and reach community needs, for that I am humbled and grateful. We have much work ahead of us to honorably uphold our legacy. I was moved by the story of the Sewing Club who is in 1899, raised $90 by sacrificing a nickel a week to aid in the upkeep and maintenance of the Church. And, the members who in more recent years fried fish and made jams and jellies to pay for renovations to the physical structure. What a testimony to their loyalty and love for Bethel and the A.M.E. traditions! What an example for each of us! As we celebrate the past and mark this day, we are also challenged to look to the future, while respecting the service of the past. There is a lot of work that lies ahead of us. Improvements and renovations to the edifice, ministries to establish, and service to be offered to our community. We have much work to do! So, on this day, celebrate, reflect, and remember. Use this day to mark the dawn of a new day. Use this day to renew your commitment to doing His will and work through your service to Bethel, the African Methodist Episcopal Church, and the City of Lebanon.

Love through Christ Jesus;

Ricardo L. Lewis Pastor, Bethel AMEC Lebanon


The Cross & The Anvil The meaning of the Cross is obvious to anyone with knowledge of the Holy Bible and the Christian Church: the resurrection of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, the power of Salvation through Him, and the immeasurable grace of God that covers the sins of the world and empowers His people to be more than conquerors through Jesus Christ who strengthens. The Anvil, on the other hand, has a symbolic and a historical meaning which must be noted by all who call themselves African Methodist. Our beginnings emerged from the depths of racism and bigotry and when our founders chose to stay with Methodism they purchased a blacksmith's shop and converted it into their house of worship they called BETHEL, meaning "House of God." In the blacksmith's shop was an anvil used to pound and shape metal ores into functional objects. And, as any blacksmith will tell you, hammers and men wear down, but the Anvil never fails. A man only need purchase one in his lifetime, it will last through many lifetimes. So it is with God; He cannot be beaten down and He is Eternal. The Anvil represents our beginning and the lasting Strength of our Lord and Savior that never ceases. The Cross and the Anvil: Our Salvation and Our Strength - Our beginnings in a blacksmith shop and our eternal ending in God's heavenly realm.


The History of the African Methodist Episcopal Church

The African Methodist Episcopal Church grew out of the Free African Society which Richard Allen, Absalom Jones, and others established in Philadelphia in 1787. When officials at St. George’s Methodist Episcopal Church pulled Blacks off their knees while praying, Free African Society members discovered just how far American Methodists would go to enforce racial discrimination against African Americans. Hence, these members of St. George’s made plans to transform their mutual aid society into an African congregation. Although most wanted to affiliate with the Protestant Episcopal Church, Allen led a small group who resolved to remain Methodists. In 1794 Bethel African Methodist Episcopal was dedicated with Allen as its pastor. To establish Bethel’s independence from the White Methodists, Allen, a former slave, successfully sued in Pennsylvania courts for the right of his congregation to exist as an independent institution. Because Black Methodists in other middle Atlantic communities encountered racism and desired religious autonomy, Allen called them to meet in Philadelphia to form a new Wesleyan denomination, African Methodist Episcopal. While the spread of the Church prior to the Civil War was mainly in the Northeast and Midwest, the most significant Era of denominational development occurred during the Civil War and Reconstruction. Oftentimes, with the permission of Union army officials, AME clergy moved into the states of the collapsing Confederacy to pull newly freed slaves into their denomination. I Seek My Brethren, the title of an often repeated sermon, became a clarion call to evangelize fellow Blacks in many parts of the South. In 1880 AME membership reached 400,000 because of its rapid spread below the Mason-Dixon line. When Bishop Henry McNeal Turner pushed African Methodism across the Atlantic into Liberia and Sierra Leone (1891) and South Africa (1896), the denomination laid claim to adherents on two continents While the AME Church is doctrinally Methodist, clergy, scholars, and lay persons have written important works which demonstrate the distinctive theology and praxis which have defined this Wesleyan body. Bishop Benjamin W. Arnett, reminded the audience of the presence of blacks in the formation of Christianity; Bishop Benjamin T. Tanner wrote in 1895 that biblical scholars wrongly portrayed the son of David as a white man; and, In the post-Civil Rights Era theologians James H. Cone, Cecil W. Cone, and Jacqueline Grant, all from the AME tradition, confronted Christian churches, both Black and White, on their shortcomings addressing the plight of those oppressed by racism, sexism, and economic disadvantage. The Name African - Within the name, the word African refers to those of African descent and heritage who organized the denomination. It does not mean that the church was founded in Africa, or that it was/is for persons of African descent, only. Methodist - The church's roots are of the family of Methodist churches. Methodism provides an orderly system of rules and regulations and places emphasis on a plain and simple gospel. Episcopal - Episcopal refers to the form of government under which the church operates. The chief executive and administrative officers of the African Methodist Episcopal denomination are the Bishops of the church. (Excerpt from http://www.ame-church.com/about-us/history.php by Dennis C .Dickerson, AME Church Historiographer)


PARTIAL

LIST

O F

PASTORS

WHO

SERVED

BETHEL

(Alphabetically Listed)

Reverend Zelia Brown Reverend W. J. Dickey Reverend John W. Douthitt, III Reverend Miller Dshe Reverend Dr. Floyd H. Flake Reverend George K. Hedgeman Reverend John E. Hunter Reverend Joshua E. January Reverend Jordan Reverend J. Edward Keyes Reverend Ricardo L. Lewis Reverend John Little Reverend Paul P. Martin Reverend Harry Maxwell Reverend John Maxwell Reverend Miller Reverend Benjamin Morrison Reverend William Ogleton, Jr. Reverend A. R. Palmer Reverend Eugene Perry Reverend Howard Phillip Reverend Elisha Reed, Jr. Reverend J. B. Singletary Reverend M. M. Smith Reverend L. J. Williams Reverend John Wright


Bethel African Methodist Episcopal Church has its roots in 1858 when a group of six Methodist men and women gathered in the home of Jesse Wilkerson to worship the Lord. History has lost what led them to leave the Methodist denomination to start services they referred to as Cottage Prayer Meetings. Quickly, the cottages became inadequate to hold the growing numbers of people who desired to worship with the group and the need for a church became apparent and urgent. With the assistance of Reverends Hunter, Asbury, and Shaffer from Wilberforce, Ohio these six organized the present Bethel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Lebanon, Ohio. In the Fall of 1861, members of the newly organized Church scrimped and saved their pennies to purchase the lot and build the first section of the Church at the current location of 111 North Cherry Street. The Western Star reported on 28 November 1861: Our colored friends of the A. M. E. Church will give a Grand Literary Entertainment at their New Church edifice, this evening. The programme is a good one, and, we have no doubt, that the entertainment will amply pay those who attend for their time and money. The proceeds go to the payment of the debt on the church. Let the house be crowded. It was reported in December of the same year that many were deprived the privilege of witnessing the performance due to inclement weather and at the request of many, the performance was repeated on Christmas Eve at the Washington Hall. In 1882, the reported membership of the church was sixty-two according to The Illustrated History of Warren County, Ohio (1882). As membership grew the need for more space was obvious. Again, members loyal to their church and the faith worked to save the funds, and contracted Mr. Charles Henderson to add the first of several additions to the structure, the auditorium. The vestibule was added in 1908 under the pastorate of Reverend A. R. Palmer. No church can be complete without a Sunday School to educate its youth in the Bible and A.M.E. tradition and empower them for the world. Martin Jameson, who later became mayor of the City of Lebanon, served as the first superintendent. When the Church later decided to use an African-American superintendent, Tom Benford was elected. He later loaned the church its first organ. Women were, and continue to be, vital to the life and endurance of Bethel. In October 1899, women met with Mrs. Cecilia Smith to organize the Sewing Circle, Mrs. Lizzie Smith served as its first president. The group had two objectives: The first was to raise money to aid the Trustee Board. The first year the ladies raised $90.16 which was enough to pay-off the Church’s debt on the furnace. The second objective was to establish a social network to cultivate friendship among the members of the Church. Bethel, the friendly little church around the corner, at all times extends loving arms and a welcome to all to worship, commune, and fellowship with its members.


1 Timothy 1: 12-14

12

And I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who hath enabled me, for that he counted me faithful, putting me into the ministry; 1 3 Who was before a blasphemer, and a persecutor, and injurious: but I obtained mercy, because I did it ignorantly in unbelief. 1 4 And the grace of our Lord was excee ding abundant with faith and love which is in Christ Jesus (King James Version)

12 I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who has given me strength, that he considered me trustworthy, appointing me to his service. 13 Even though I was once a blasphemer and a persecutor and a violent man, I was shown mercy because I acted in ignorance and unbelief. 14 The grace of our Lord was poured out on me abundantly, along with the faith and love that are in Christ Jesus (New International Version)

I'm so grateful to Christ Jesus for making me adequate to do this work. He went out on a limb, you know, in trusting me with this ministry. The only credentials I brought to it were invective and witch hunts and arrogance. But I was treated mercifully beca use I didn't know what I was doing —didn't know Who I was doing it against! Grace mixed with faith and love poured over me and into me. And all because of Jesus. (The Message Bible)


Pastor Ricardo L. Lewis was assigned to Bethel African Methodist Episcopal Church during the South Ohio Annual Conference in 2010. While filling the pulpit, Pastor Lewis completed two Master’s degrees at the Methodist Theological School in Ohio (MTSO), a Master’s of Divinity and Master’s of Arts in Counseling Ministry. Pastor Lewis is a certified Chaplin and a founding member of the Centerville Chapter of the College of Pastoral Supervision and Psychotherapy. Additionally, he is licensed by the State of Ohio as a Chemical Dependency Counselor. This license permits him to serve as a counselor at the Center for Alcohol and Drug Addiction Services (CADAS) where he works with clients to steer them toward a life free of their dependency on substances such as alcohol and controlled chemical drugs (both illegal and prescription). A native of San Francisco, Pastor Lewis came to Ohio from Oakland, California. He is the son of Churchill (deceased) and Ruby Lewis. Raised Seventh Day Adventist, Pastor Lewis felt called to the African Methodist Episcopal Church (AMEC) after he learned of the church’s rich history and stated mission. In 1994 he was ordained as a Deacon through Brookins AMEC, Oakland. It was the church’s dedication to education that led him to Wilberforce University where he earned Bachelor degrees in Psychology and Rehabilitation Mental Health. After graduation in 1999, Pastor Lewis was ordained an elder of the AMEC church. Prior to coming to Bethel he transferred from the 5 th Episcopal to the 3rd Episcopal District and where he was assigned to Whitman Chapel AMEC, Belpre (Oh) and Shorter Chapel, Greenfield (Oh). In his spare time, Reverend Lewis enjoys playing bass guitar and has performed as a member with several groups. He is the father of four, Lindsey (Hayward, CA); Ricquel (Atlanta, GA); Antonio (Sacramento, CA); and, Martinique (Atlanta, GA) and has two grandchildren. He is married to Vonya, who is an Associate Professor of History at Sinclair Community College. Pastor Lewis’ favorite Bible verse is Philippians 4:7 – And the peace of God which surpasses all understanding shall guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. This verse is significant to him because he came to realize that every day God blesses him to see, he will have challenges. The very act of living will put obstacles in his way whether with the people he encounters or situations that arise. Yet, he knows beyond a shadow of a doubt that it has only been the peace of God that sustained him through life thus far and that will permit him to carry on.


Rev. Karen R. Schaeffer, Ph.D., as Co-Director of Empowering Education Consultation & Systems Support Services, LLC, provides professional development and consultation to schools, faith-based, and other child and family serving organizations. She finished doctoral studies in School Psychology with a focus on cross-agency collaboration at the University of Cincinnati in 2001. She recently completed requirements for a Masters of Divinity degree from Payne Theological Seminary at Wilberforce, Ohio. Her Masters Thesis describes how theological principles voiced by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. provide a solid foundation on which to build modern grassroots efforts toward equity and justice. Rev. Schaeffer is an ordained Itinerate Deacon of the AME Church. She serves as an assistant to the pastor at Bethel AMEC in Lebanon, Ohio. Her ministerial commitments include the duties of Church School Superintendent and Sunday School Teacher. She provides clergy supports for development of youth and community outreach programs, and provides adult and student workshops within the South Ohio Cincinnati District Conference of the African Methodist Episcopal Church. During her twenty-three year career as an educator, Dr. Schaeffer has provided leadership at building, district, regional and state levels to facilitate implementation of effective academic and behavior prevention and intervention systems. She works collaboratively to develop tools and resources that support large-scale implementation of research and evidence-based practices that are culturally responsive, rigorous and relevant in order to meet the needs of all students while closing historic achievement gaps. She is a co-author of Best Practices in Professional Development: Moving School Systems to an Integrated, Three-Tier Model of Academic and Behavior Supports, a chapter in J. Grimes & A. Thomas, Best Practices in School Psychology IV (2007). Dr. Schaeffer specializes in facilitating cycles of improvement in educational and social service systems with a focus on identifying and growing existing and potential system strengths. She was a founding member of the Diversity in Education Collaborative (DEC) of Southwest Ohio and is currently coordinating development of The Martin Luther King, Jr. Community Coalition of Lebanon, Ohio. Dr. Schaeffer is happily married to Mr. Mark Schaeffer. They have two adult daughters, two sons-in-law and five grandchildren.


Pastor Solomon J. Cooper was appointed to Quinn Chapel AME Church Wilmington, 13 November 2010 by Bishop C. Garnett Henning, Sr., the 112th elected and consecrated bishop of the AME Church and Presiding Prelate of the 3rd Episcopal District. Rev. Cooper began his ministry as an associate pastor (minister of visitation) at Wayman AME Church Dayton, OH; pastor of Quinn Chapel AME Church Marion, OH; and, pastor of Quinn Memorial AME Church Steubenville, OH. Since arriving at Quinn Wilmington, the Lord has truly moved in the congregation and community: a new roof was installed on the parsonage, and the installation of two storm doors is underway. Additionally, the 2-unit rental property is receiving a make-over. Quinn received a grant for two lifts as part of an initiative by the Pastor & 1st Lady Dr. Cooper to make it more accessible for individuals with disabilities and seniors. By the grace of God, all of the aforementioned were accomplished at no expense to the church. Rev. Cooper is also establishing the 1 st Celebrate Recovery program in Wilmington. Rev. Cooper is a servant leader, who truly believes in looking out for the least of these (Matthew 25:31-46) for we are our brothers’ keeper. He served in the human services field and community as: consultant, counselor, educator, certified HIV/AIDS tester/screener, disability advocate, licensed social worker and certified trainer. Through the years, Rev. Cooper conducted seminars and workshops on HIV/AIDS, Disability, and Windmills Employer Sensitivity Training. He received numerous accolades in the human services field including a National Award for stellar work in HIV/AIDS while serving on the Executive Board of Urban League Young Professionals Dayton, Ohio as Health & Quality of Life Committee Chair. He earned an associate’s degree in liberal arts & sciences, Penn State University, a bachelor’s degree in social work, Wilberforce University, and a master’s degree in rehabilitation counseling, The Ohio State University. He is pursuing a master’s of divinity degree at Payne Theological Seminary, Wilberforce, Ohio. God blessed him beyond measure with his lovely wife Dr. Robin Moore-Cooper and loving in–laws. Rev. Cooper is the son of Rev. Samson (retired Presiding Elder of the Pittsburgh Conference) & Mrs. Jaunitta Cooper, and grandson of the late Rev. Solomon & Mary Cooper and forever blessed with the love of Grandma Georgia Cooper.


150th Anniversary Beheld African Methodist Episcopal Church Reverend Ricardo L. Lewis, Pastor Reverend Karen R. Schaeffer, PhD, Associate Pastor 21 August 2011 11:00 a.m.

The Order of Service The Doxology ......................................................................................................................... Congregation Praise God from Whom All Blessings Flow Praise God, from whom all blessing flow; Praise Him all creatures here below; Praise Him above, ye Heavenly host, Praise Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. Amen The Call to Worship ........................................................................................ Reverend Karen R. Schaeffer Associate Pastor, Bethel AMEC

The Minister:

I was glad when they said to me: “Let us go to the house of the Lord!� Our feet have been standing within your gate, O Jerusalem!

The People:

For a day in your courts is better than a thousand elsewhere, I would rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God, than dwell in the tents of wickedness.

The Minister:

For the sake of the house of the Lord our God, I will seek your good.

The People:

They are planted in the house of the Lord, they flourish in the courts of our God.

The Minister:

O, Lord, I love the habitation of your house, and the place where your glory dwells.

The People:

But the Lord is in His holy temple; let all the earth keep silence before Him.

The Minister:

Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in your sight, O Lord, my Rock and my Redeemer.

All:

O sing to the Lord a new song, for he has done marvelous things! Make a joyful noise to the Lord, all the earth, sing praises!


The Opening Hymn ................................................................................................................ Congregation God of Grace and God of Glory God of grace and God of glory, On Thy people pour Thy power. Crown Thine ancient church’s story, Bring her bud to glorious flower. Grant us wisdom, grant us courage, For the facing of this hour, For the facing of this hour. Lo! the hosts of evil ’round us, Scorn Thy Christ, assail His ways. From the fears that long have bound us, Free our hearts to faith and praise. Grant us wisdom, grant us courage, For the living of these days, For the living of these days. Cure Thy children’s warring madness, Bend our pride to Thy control. Shame our wanton selfish gladness, Rich in things and poor in soul. Grant us wisdom, grant us courage, Lest we miss Thy kingdom’s goal, Lest we miss Thy kingdom’s goal. Set our feet on lofty places, Gird our lives that they may be, Armored with all Christ-like graces, In the fight to set men free. Grant us wisdom, grant us courage, That we fail not man nor Thee, That we fail not man nor Thee. Save us from weak resignation, To the evils we deplore. Let the search for Thy salvation, Be our glory evermore. Grant us wisdom, grant us courage, Serving Thee Whom we adore, Serving Thee Whom we adore.


The Invocation ................................................................................................... Reverend Ricardo L. Lewis Pastor, Bethel AMEC

The Choral Response.............................................................................................................. Congregation Spirit of the Living God Spirit of the living God fall fresh on me Spirit of the living God fall fresh on me Melt me, mold me, fill Me, use me Spirit of the living God fall fresh on me Musical Selections........................................................................................................... Ms. Krista Jackson The Welcome ............................................................................................................... Mrs. Alissa Osborne The Scripture ................................................ 1 Timothy 1:1-14 ................................... Reverend Schaeffer Litany ............................................................................................................................ Reverend Schaeffer The Minister:

Dear Lord, thank You for drawing us, as a congregation, to You to become part of Your church.

The People:

Thank You for our ancestors and those who listened to Your voice and were obedient to Your call to organize this congregation for Your purpose.

The Minister:

Help us to teach our young Your ways and their history, so they will know who You are and who they can be.

The People:

Inspire us with a vision for the future and use that vision to direct the path of this congregation.

The Minister:

Help us to lean not on our own understanding but to lean on every promise of Your Word.

The People:

Grant us the authority to conquer all divisiveness, and fill us with a desire to love one another.

The Minister:

Lord, please hide us in Your bosom and protect us from all evil and from the wiles of those spirits that seek to destroy the peace You have given us.

The People:

May Your spirit continue to infuse our church with courage, hope, and grace.

The Minister:

Teach us to know Your voice and give us the courage to obey it.

All:

Lord, please continue to provide Your Church with a light for the world


The Announcements ...........................................................................................................Ms. Tracie Mills Altar Call The Introduction of Speaker ...............................................................................................Reverend Lewis Musical Selections.....................................................................................................................Ms. Jackson The Message ................................................................................................. Reverend Solomon J. Cooper Pastor, Quinn Chapel AMEC, Wilmington

The Invitation to Christian Discipleship ........................................................................... Reverend Cooper Just As I Am

Just as I am, without one plea, But that Thy blood was shed for me, And that Thou bidst me come to Thee, O Lamb of God, I come, I come. Just as I am, and waiting not To rid my soul of one dark blot, To Thee whose blood can cleanse each spot, O Lamb of God, I come, I come. Just as I am, though tossed about With many a conflict, many a doubt, Fightings and fears within, without, O Lamb of God, I come, I come. Just as I am, Thou wilt receive, Wilt welcome, pardon, cleanse, relieve; Because Thy promise I believe, O Lamb of God, I come, I come.


The Ministry of Giving .............................................................................................. Bethel AMEC Trustees We Bring the Sacrifice of Praise We bring the sacrifice of praise Unto the house of the Lord. We bring the sacrifice of praise Unto the house of the Lord. And we offer up to You, The sacrifices of thanksgiving And we offer up to You, The sacrifices of joy. The Apostle’s Creed ............................................................................................................... Congregation The Apostle’s Creed I believe in God the Father Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth: and in Jesus Christ his only Son our Lord, who was conceived by the Holy Ghost, born of the Virgin Mary, suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, dead, and buried: The third day he arose from the dead; He ascended into heaven, and sitteth on the right hand of God, the Father Almighty; from thence he shall come to judge the quick and the dead. I believe in the Holy Ghost; the Church universal; the Communion of Saints; the Forgiveness of sins; The resurrection of the body, And the life everlasting. Amen. The Doxology ........................................................................................................................ Congregation Praise God from Whom All Blessings Flow Praise God, from whom all blessing flow; Praise Him all creatures here below; Praise Him above, ye Heavenly host, Praise Father, Son and Holy Ghost Amen The Benediction ............................................................................................................... Reverend Cooper

Our Invitation to You A dinner invitation is extended to our guest immediately after the morning worship service in the basement.


The Right Reverend C. Garnett Henning has been respected on the North American anc African continents since the late 1970s for his vision, ministry, and leadership. Highly regarded among clergy persons, elected officials and activists, as a young minister his passionate and effective Christian advocacy in Los Angeles and St. Louis were instrumental in winning battles against discrimination. His advocacy for economic, social and political justice for African-Americans and other minorities has been the hallmark of his ministry wherever he has served. He has been a forceful fighter in areas of police brutality, housing, quality education and employment. From the mid to late 1970 in Los Angeles, while Senior Shepherd of Ward African Methodist Episcopal, he served as Executive Vice President, President and Chairman of the Board of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference-West. He also served as a member of the city's Housing Authority for seven years and as president for two years. In St. Louis, where he was Senior Minister of St. Paul African Methodist Episcopal Church, the Mother Church west of the Mississippi River, his distinctive leadership style and activism were beneficial for the poor and locked-out. While living in St. Louis, he founded the Committee for Equal Justice, an organization that exposed corruption in the Bail Bond system and established an Own Recognizance program. The program provided leadership for the eventual establishment of the Pre-Trial Release Program which allowed qualified applicants to be released prior to trial without posting a financial bond. Bishop Henning also founded the Black Clergy Coalition which gave valuable leadership to Black ecumenical cooperation, economic development and political empowerment. He served for several years as Chairperson of the Political Action Committee. Bishop Henning also founded the Superintendent Advisory Committee, a committee that interacted with the Superintendent of education on matters related to quality education for the people of St. Louis and particularly the African-American community. Bishop Henning served as Executive Director of Block Partnership a program that brought together the Inner City and Suburban Churches and other organizations in programs of partnership for empowerment. His congregation also participated in a summer exchange program with city and county churches called Parish Partners. His abilities and contributions gained even wider recognition with his 1992 election as the 112th Bishop of the African Methodist Episcopal Church and his assignment as Presiding Prelate of the 14th Episcopal District. The Fourteenth Episcopal District is in West Africa, and comprises Liberia, Nigeria, Ghana, Sierra Leone and Cote I'voire. While bishop serving in the Fourteenth District, despite the civil war which was being fought in Liberia, Bishop Henning established AME University, an institution which now has a student enrollment in excess of fifteen hundred students. He also established C. G. Henning, Jr. Memorial Institute, in Danane' Cote I'voire, a refugee area. The school continues until today. In 1996 Bishop Henning took the helm of the denomination's 19th Episcopal District, South Africa. Since then, he has been a forceful leader among bishops and lay leaders in support of indigenous leadership in Africa. While in South Africa, he completely modernized the H. B. Senatle Headquarters Building's office operations and built and paid for the C. G. Henning, Sr. Wing, which was dedicated in 1998.


From 1996-2000 Bishop Henning served as Chairman of the church's Commission on Women and Ministry which provided a platform for his long-time advocacy for the election of a woman to the Episcopacy. In 2000, while he was Chairperson of the Commission on Women in Ministry, Bishop Vashti McKenzie was elected and consecrated the first female bishop of the African Methodist Episcopal Church. Bishop Henning speaks forcefully and freely of his vision for full empowerment of women in the life of the denomination. He believes the greatest calls one can receive is the call to empower others, particularly in self-development. In 1998 he funded an eight-member delegation of Women in Ministry to the United States, from South Africa, and provided them with opportunities for travel and preaching throughout the country. He ordained, assigned and promoted more women than any other bishop in the history of the 19th Episcopal District. With his installation as President of the African Methodist Episcopal Council of Bishops in June 1999, his Afro-centric voice and presence have been increasingly seen as an even more important bridge to influence and power for members of Black America's oldest denomination (founded in Philadelphia in 1787). Bishop Henning dedicated more than 20 parsonages and churches that were built or renovated under his administration and started more than 50 A.M.E. congregations in South Africa between 1996 and 2000. Bishop Henning is a native of Memphis, Tennessee where he graduate from Booker T. Washington High School, received his Bachelor Science degree from Wilberforce University and the Master of Divinity degree from Payne Theological Seminary (Wilberforce, Ohio). He also completed the course work for the Doctor of Ministry degree at Eden Theological Seminary (Webster Groves, MO). He has received numerous awards, honors and recognitions for civic, social, religious and political contributions to the communities where he served. He was the presiding bishop of the 8th Episcopal District of the African Methodist Episcopal Church (2000-2008) which includes the states of Mississippi and Louisiana. While serving the 8th District, Bishop Henning was very vocal about his views regarding the confederate flag that flies over Mississippi. On Friday, 11 July 2008, Bishop C. Garnett Henning, Sr., was assigned by the 48th Session of the General Conference of the A.M.E. Church to the Third Episcopal District of the African Methodist Episcopal Church which is composed of Ohio, Western Pennsylvania and West Virginia. As a graduate of Wilberforce University and Payne Seminary, he brings renewed emphasis on our educational institutions. As a community activist, we will be seeking ways for our communities to be strengthened spiritually, politically, socially and economically.


150th Anniversary Beheld African Methodist Episcopal Church Reverend Ricardo L. Lewis, Pastor Reverend Karen R. Schaeffer, PhD, Associate Pastor 21 August 2011 4:00 p..m.

Worship Leader: Reverend Karen R. Schaeffer, PhD Associate Pastor,, Bethel African Methodist Episcopal Church

Litany .................................................................................................................. Reverend Ricardo L. Lewis Pastor, Bethel AMEC

The Minister:

Be with us. O God, as we celebrate this day and the years of Christian fellowship that we have shared as a congregation.

The People:

For such a day as this, you have called the church to be at its best.

The Minister:

Quicken are memories of those whose wisdom and love established and whose faith and steadfastness glorified You though its life.

The People:

For those who laid the foundations of this household of faith, we give thanks.

The Minister:

Make vivid to us the glorious victories that have been won in Your name and the continuing fellowship, which has revealed Your Spirit though the years.

The People:

For the rich inheritance of the Church of Jesus Christ, we give thanks.

The Minister:

Crown our joy in this hour with a fresh awareness of the vast company of Christians who share our celebration and who urge us to yet greater achievements in Christ’s name.

The People:

For those who make common cause with us, we give thanks.

The Minister:

May we be worthy of the faith of our ancestors and eager to win new victories for righteousness’ sake.

The People:

For the “invisible institution” of black slaves we give thanks. For the emergence of the Black Church, solidified by suffering and deliverance, we give thanks.

The Minister:

We remember with gratitude and awe their creative appropriation of Bible, and their centuries-long struggle for freedom all alone.

The People:

For the Quakers who took a firm stand against slavery in 1688, we give thanks.


The Minister:

Fill us with an ever-increasing knowledge of truth, and an evergrowing awareness of need. Give us a more generous spirit.

The People:

For the assurance of new opportunities to serve You better, we give thanks.

The Minister:

O God, our help in ages past, our hope for years to come, renew our faith and increase our strength. May we be worthy recipients of past blessings and ready helpers in the tasks that lie ahead.

The People:

Come, Lord Jesus, empower and hold our church to Your heart.

The Minister:

Unite us in common commitment to the Lordship of Jesus Christ, that the world may see our dedication to follow Your teachings and to fulfill Your will for this church.

All:

May Your kingdom come and Your will be done in splendid, perfect fellowship. Continue to guide us in the future as You have in the past.

The Opening Hymn ................................................................................................................ Congregation The Church is One Foundation The Church’s one foundation Is Jesus Christ her Lord, She is His new creation By water and the Word. From heaven He came and sought her To be His holy bride; With His own blood He bought her And for her life He died. Elect from every nation, Yet one o’er all the earth; Her charter of salvation, One Lord, one faith, one birth; One holy Name she blesses, Partakes one holy food, And to one hope she presses, With every grace endued. Though with a scornful wonder Men see her sore oppressed, By schisms rent asunder, By heresies distressed: Yet saints their watch are keeping, Their cry goes up, “How long?”


And soon the night of weeping Shall be the morn of song! ’Mid toil and tribulation, And tumult of her war, She waits the consummation Of peace forevermore; Till, with the vision glorious, Her longing eyes are blest, And the great Church victorious Shall be the Church at rest. Yet she on earth hath union With God the Three in One, And mystic sweet communion With those whose rest is won, O happy ones and holy! Lord give us grace that we Like them, the meek and lowly, On high may dwell with thee.

The Invocation .................................................................................................................... Ministerial Dais Choral Response .................................................................................................................... Congregation Welcome From the Church ............................................................................................ Ms. Karen Bentley Welcome From the City of Lebanon ............................................................... The Honorable Amy Brewer Mayor, City of Lebanon

Musical Selection .......................................................................................................... Children’s Ministry Bethel AMEC

Musical Selection(s) ..................................................................... Allen Temple AME Church Male Chorus Dr. Robert Gazaway, Minister of Music

The Scripture ............................................. 1 Timothy 1:1-14 ............................................. Ministerial Dais Musical Selection(s) ............................................................................................................. Various Artists The Introduction of the Presiding Elder ............................................................................. Reverend Lewis


Presentation of The Bishop .............................................................................. Reverend Wilton E. Blake, I Presiding Elder, South Ohio Conference, Cincinnati District

Musical Selection ............................................................................................... Allen temple Male Chorus The Message ..................................................................................................... Bishop C. Garnett Henning Presiding Prelate, Third Episcopal District

The Invitation to Christian Discipleship ..............................................................................Bishop Hanning Just As I Am Just as I am, without one plea, But that Thy blood was shed for me, And that Thou bidst me come to Thee, O Lamb of God, I come, I come. Just as I am, and waiting not To rid my soul of one dark blot, To Thee whose blood can cleanse each spot, O Lamb of God, I come, I come. Just as I am, though tossed about With many a conflict, many a doubt, Fightings and fears within, without, O Lamb of God, I come, I come. Just as I am, Thou wilt receive, Wilt welcome, pardon, cleanse, relieve; Because Thy promise I believe, O Lamb of God, I come, I come.


The Ministry of Giving .................................................................................................................................. We Bring the Sacrifice of Praise We bring the sacrifice of praise Unto the house of the Lord. We bring the sacrifice of praise Unto the house of the Lord. And we offer up to You, The sacrifices of thanksgiving And we offer up to You, The sacrifices of joy. The Doxology ......................................................................................................................... Congregation Praise God from Whom All Blessings Flow Praise God, from whom all blessing flow; Praise Him all creatures here below; Praise Him above, ye Heavenly host, Praise Father, Son and Holy Ghost. Amen The Benediction ..................................................................................................................Bishop Henning

Our Invitation to You We extend an invitation to our guest to join us immediately after the worship service for a reception.


Congratulations and Best Wishes to the Officers, Members and Congregation of Bethel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Lebanon, Ohio on serving God and the community for 150 years. Our prayers are for many more years of your continued service Rev. Dr. & Mrs. Wilton E. Blake, I Presiding Elder and First Lady Cincinnati District, South Ohio Conference


In

Loving

Memory

of

Churchill Lewis (1915-2005) And

Sheryl Annette Flowers (1966-2009) You Are Both Missed, Ruby Lewis

Congratulations To

my

son,

Pastor Ricardo L. Lewis And

the

members

of

BETHEL AMEC on your

150 th Anniversary


CONGRATULATIONS

Bethel AME Church &

Rev. Ricardo L. Lewis on your

th

150 Anniversary

Rev. Solomon Cooper, 1st Lady Dr. Robin Cooper &

Quinn Chapel, Wilmington


In memory of

Gladys Minuette

Congratulations Bethel A.M.E. Church on your

150th Anniversary Jackson C. Hedges Attorney-at-law 24 North Broadway Lebanon It seems like yesterday that you were here with us. Like you told me time and time again – when God fixes a place in His garden He will come and get me. Mom – you are really missed by your one and only child and your grandchildren. Daughter M. Virginia Jones and the grandsons, Aaron and Glen and great-grandchildren.


Congratulations Bethel Lebanon on your 150th Anniversary Bethel AME Middletown 1507 Yankee Road Middletown, Ohio 45044

Pastor: Melonie A. Valentine Phone: (513) 432-8532 Fax: (513) 424-5117

Congratulations BETHEL African Methodist Episcopal Church for

150 Years

Saidah Foree


Congratulations Bethel A. M. e. Church for

150 Years

Your Friends at

Bethany United Church of Christ 1026 S. State Route 123 Lebanon, OH 45036

Barb Hobe, Pastor


CONGRATULATIONS

BETHEL A.M.E. CHURCH FOR 150 YEARS

THANK YOU FOR ANOTHER DAY’S JOURNEY

THE JAMES R. MILLS FAMILY

JAMES R. MILLS LORETTA R. MILLS WAVERLY R. MILLS WAGNER JAMES R. MILLS, II TRACIA R. MILLS


Heating & Air Service 937.372.1621

Congratulations! Reverend Ricardo Lewis, Pastor &

Bethel African Methodist episcopal church for

BETHEL AMEC and

Ricardo L. Lewis, Pastor on your

150th Anniversary

150 Years (1861 – 2011)

Christ Our Redeemer Dayton, Ohio

Oh give thanks to the Lord for He is good! His mercy endures forever.

F. James & Charlene Norris

Psalm 118:1

Norma Lynn Felt, Pastor


Congratulations Reverend Ricardo L. Lewis & Bethel For

150 Years of Service

Shorter Chapel AME Church William Roberts, Pastor

CONGRATULATIONS BETHEL On your

150th Anniversary

Julia & Paul Rodenbeck, Inc. Attorneys-at-law

15 Indian Mound Drive 513.933.9925


Congratulations on your

150th Anniversary Bethel African Methodist Episcopal Church and

Reverend Ricardo L. Lewis

The Thornton Family


In Loving Memory of

Edith Marie Thornton 1920-2010 We Miss You

CONGRATULATIONS BETHEL On

150 years in service To the

Lord Pastor Ricardo L. & Vonya L. Lewis


Special Thank You CEDAR CITY FLORIST 530 North Broadway – 513.932.2916 Who provided the beautiful flowers! DR. ROBERT GAZAWAY& ALLEN TEMPLE MALE CHORUS Who graciously provided the outstanding music for the afternoon service. THE HOUSTON INN 4026 U.S. 42 – 513.398.7377 Who provided fantastic desserts for the dinner!

KRISTA JACKSON Who shared her magnificent talents during the morning service!

RAYE KIMBERLIN Who always said yes, no matter the task! JALYNN STOWER Who worked diligently with the children teaching signing and provided her talents and skills during the afternoon service!

Anniversary Committee Co-Chairs KAREN BENTLEY

JAY MILLS


Congratulations Bethel

AMEC

on your

150th Anniversary


Greetings to the Bethel A.M.E. Church on the occasion of your 150th Anniversary Celebration. I am grateful for the two and one half years that I was privileged to serve as your Pastor. I pray that God will continue to bless Bethel with many more great years of service to the Lebanon Community. Sincerely, The Greater Allen A.M.E. Cathedral of New York Family The Honorable Rev. Floyd H. Flake, D.Min. Pastor U. S. Congressman, Retired

The Rev. M. Elaine Flake, D.Min. Co-Pastor


Bethel A.M.E. Lebanon - 150th Anniversary