African Americans in Religion

1773
First known black Baptist church is founded in Sliver Bluff, South Carolina; other congregations soon form in Georgia and Virginia

1780

Lemuel Haynes begins to preach at a Congregational church in Connecticut, making him the first African American minister of a predominantly white congregation

1794

First African American church congregations in the North are established: the African Episcopal Church of St. Thomas and the Bethel A.M.E. Church, both in Philadelphia

1816
Richard Allen becomes the first African American bishop when he is elected at the general convention of the A.M.E. Church in Philadelphia

1875

James Healy is elected the first African American Roman Catholic bishop; presides over the diocese of Portland, Maine

1964
Prince Taylor becomes the first black Methodist bishop to head a predominantly white district, in New Jersey

Dr. Edler Garnet Hawkins becomes the first African American moderator of the United Presbyterian Church

1969

Thomas Kilgore Jr. becomes the first African American president of the predominantly white American Baptist Convention

1970
John M. Burgess is installed as the first black bishop to head an Episcopal diocese in the United States (Massachusetts)

1972

W. Sterling Cary becomes the first black president of the National Council of Churches

1976

Dr. Joseph H. Evans is elected the first African American president of the predominantly white Church of Christ

African Americans in Religion
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