On September 14, the American Clergy Leadership Conference (ACLC) hosted a powerful prayer breakfast in Los Angeles. An amalgam of religious leaders assembled to share their thoughts on the topic of “Passing the Baton to the Next Generation.”
The prayer breakfast kicked off with Eula McLaurin, pastor of House of David Community Church, enthusiastically reading a scripture passage at her very first ACLC event. Then, Pastor Evon McMurry of Word Empowerment to Serve Ministries, who served as emcee, introduced Bishop John Calvin, a retired pastor of Tower of Praise Christian Church and a founding Bishop of the Convention of Coventry Churches. Bishop Calvin confessed that he has difficulty in trusting the youth, but affirmed that it is imperative to pass on responsibility to the next generation. He and his wife have two sons, both of who have become pastors.
Rev. Mark Tengan, the newly appointed pastor of the Los Angeles Family Church, excitedly introduced the young Jermaine Bishop, his assistant pastor. Mr. Bishop beseeched the older generation to explain to young people the difference between “believing” in God and “knowing” God. He stressed that this next generation yearns to receive the baton.
“We do not know how much God is working on the characters of young people,” said Dominique Cox, an energetic youth minister at the City of Refuge. “We hold the power within us to reach to the youth for God.”
“We are all blessed to be involved in fulfilling the vision Jesus passed on to Rev. Dr. Sun Myung Moon,” declared Pastor McMurry. He explained that Dr. Hak Ja Han Moon is working all day and night to carry out this vision, which will be passed on to the younger generations. Then, Rev. Matthew Wheaton of Balance is Our Goal Ministry took to the stage to declare that “we have a crisis in Christianity because we have a crisis in the family.” Rev. Wheaton spoke of hosting the Marriage Blessing Ceremony for his congregation, which has healed relationships between couples and within families.
Dr. Nicholas Benson, ACLC LA co-chair and pastor of First Summit Evangelical Church, concluded the prayer breakfast by reminding everyone of Jesus’ commanding statement, “All of them may be one, Father, just as you are in me and I am in you. May they also be in us so that the world may believe that you have sent me.” (John 17:21).
ACLC LA is ardently preparing for Dr. Moon’s 30,000 clergy rally on December 28.