‘The community is my congregation!’ says pastor Edgar Vann, whose involvement in civic as well as church affairs is legendary in his home town of Detroit, Michigan. Under his leadership Second Ebenezer Church has grown from 66 people to more than 5,000 people. Bishop Vann, who spends a lot of time mentoring younger ministers, says that getting involved in the community is a must for any congregation hoping to become a healthy, vital force.
I was drawn to Bishop Vann because of his conviction that the Church is obligated to continually look outside its walls to bring about positive social change to people regardless of their membership in a faith community. Bishop’s gifted oratory and passion for the Gospel will inspire you as it did me.
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Bishop Edgar Vann just can’t stay quiet about the brokenness of the world and his calling to do something about it. Vann believes that when congregations get busy with healing the hurts outside their walls, as well as inside, their congregations will be ignited like never before. Here are my notes from the interview:
Your Church Was Created to Impact the World
One of Bishop Vann’s deepest beliefs is that the Church is meant to have a positive affect on its community. Vann encourages congregations to get outside their buildings, talk to their neighbors, and share their burdens.
Commit to Prayer
Vann’s church is known as a praying church – holding all vigils at every hour of the day – all the while reminding themselves, and the world, that God’s most public work is birthed in the prayer closet.
Be the Change You Are Seeking
Vann says a church won’t be prayerful unless the pastor is prayerful, won’t grow unless the pastor grows, and won’t be better unless the pastor is better.
About Bishop Edgar Vann
Bishop Edgar L. Vann is Senior Pastor of Second Ebenezer Church, in Detroit, Michigan, where he has served since 1976. Bishop Vann’s ministry focus has always been to encourage people to aspire to a higher level of spiritual, personal and transformational growth. He holds a Doctorate of Divinity from Urban Bible College and St. Thomas Christian College, and a Doctorate of Laws Degree from Tennessee School of Religion.
Bishop Vann has had extensive community involvement, serving on several boards throughout Michigan including: Mosaic Youth Theater, Wayne State University’s Research & Technology Park, The Skillman Foundation, Detroit Regional Chamber, Michigan Coalition of Human Rights, Detroit Institute of Arts, Henry Ford Health System, Commissioner for the Detroit Police Department, Habitat for Humanity, and the Michigan Civil Rights Commission. He is also an inductee in the Martin Luther King, Jr. Board of Preachers at Morehouse College in Atlanta, Georgia. In September 2008, Bishop Vann was elevated to the Office of Bishop by the Joint College of African-American Bishops, and is now the Presiding Prelate over The Kingdom Alliance Covenant Fellowship. Bishop Vann is married to Elder Sheila Renee’ Vann and has two children, Edgar III and Ericka Monique.
Sponsors I Mentioned
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