The African Methodist Episcopal Church, has a unique and glorious history. It is unique in that it is the first major religious denomination in the Western World that had its origin over sociological rather than theological beliefs and differences. The Church was born in protest against slavery - against dehumanization of African people, brought to the American continent as cheap labor.
The word "African" means that our Church was organized by people of African descent and heritage. It does not mean that our Church was founded in Africa, or that it is for people of African descent only. It simply means that those Americans who founded it were of African descent, and we proudly recognized this fact.
Our Church is a member of the family of Methodist Churches.
The word "Episcopal" refers to the form of government under which our Church operates. The Episcopal form of government means that the chief executive and administrative offices of our denomination are our Bishops. Their authority is given them by the General Conference.
The Christian Church is a community of people who believe in God and who have accepted Jesus Christ as the Guide and Master of their lives. We who make up the Christian Church believe that God, through Jesus Christ can transform individuals in such a way as to cause them to want to be like, think like, and act like Jesus in every area of their daily lives. We also believe that there is a divine power, referred to as the Holy Spirit, which enables the willing person to become a true and effective servant of God, s Jesus was a true and effective servant.
Richard Allen our Founder and first Bishop was born a slave in 1760. His slave master was Benjamin Chew. He bought his freedom for 2000 continental dollars. He was married to Sarah Allen in 1787. Richard Allen made a gigantic step in his life which began a movement that would leave a rich heritage and legacy behind.
In 1787. Rev. Richard Allen, Absalom Jones and a band of followers withdraw from St. George
The AME Church is composed of over 5 million members and 8,000 Ministers, 7,000 Congregations, 21 Episcopal Districts, 21 Active Bishops and 127 Annual Conferences.
Since women have been given the privilege to serve in the Church, we have 19 female Presiding Elders and the latest report reveals that there are 3,211 women in Ministry. Since our last two General Conferences, three females were consecrated as Bishops of our Church.
The Bahama Island Conference is also a part of the African Methodist Episcopal Church. The African Methodist Church was established in the Bahama Islands in 1907. The first Worship Service was held on a "porch" in Savannah Sound, Eleuthera. In 1908, the corner stone was laid for Bethel AME Church.
In Nassau the first AME Church was established in 1938 named Mt. Sinai. Later in 1956 the name was changed to the Minister Wives Centre.
Robinson Morris Chapel was built in 1975.