Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Brothers Folsom, Barnes Get AME Church Asssignments at Conference

Omega men know how to Persevere, and at the end of that Perseverance comes the reward. For Brothers Rev. Dr. Gerald Folsom and Rev. Rodney Barnes, Perseverance in The Word and in the shaping and molding of a new calling in ministry is paying off.

Bro. Folsom, the long-serving Second District Chaplain for Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Inc, received his first pastoral appointment on April 22. He was appointed pastor of Wayman Memorial AME Church in Baltimore.

“It’s a great community church in the heart of what’s called Pigtown.  We are called the Miracle on Washington Boulevard!  We serve a great working class community close to Ravens Stadium.,” said Bro. Folsom.

Brother Reverends Barnes and Folsom
Bro. Folsom was formally named to the pastorate at the 66th Session of the Washington Annual AME Conference which was held at Reid Temple AME in Glen Dale, MD.  The three-day conference was from April 20-22.  Pastoral appointments were read by Bishop William P. DeVeaux (Alpha Chapter, '60) on Friday night, April 22 at the close of the conference business session.

In the AME church, pastors serve for one conference year and then at the next Annual Conference can be re-appointed to the same church or assigned to another church.  It is up to the discretion of the Bishop and the Presiding Elder. 

“I am so thankful for the appointment and just want to do God's will, love the people, and help transformation take place in the community,” said Bro. Folsom.  “I want to see the church once again be the center of the community.  After serving almost 10 years on the ministerial staff of Community of Hope AME in Hillcrest Heights, MD, under Rev Tony Lee as my Pastor, this takes my ministry, which is really God's ministry, to another level. I do believe this is the church God wants me to shepherd.”

Bro. Folsom has already started serving. In the AME church, the assignments are immediate. He presided over his first worship service on Sunday, April 24, at 11 am.  His sermon was "It's Going to Be Alright" from Matthew 9:18-26.

The church is located at 1305 Washington Boulevard in South Baltimore. You can visit Wayman AME on Facebook: Wayman AME 

Gamma Pi Brother Rev. Rodney Barnes, a recently retired police officer, was also spurred on to continue his calling during the recent Conference. Bro. Barnes received his third re-appointment to Gethesemane AME Church, a church he planted that is now called THEGAMECHURCH after a recent rebranding.

“I'm humbled at this my third Appointment as the Pastor of Gethsemane AME Church.  We are on the move, God has positioned us for success,” said Bro. Barnes. “Our theme scripture is 1 Corinthians 3:6; "I planted the seed, Apollos watered it, but God has been making it grow."  

Bro. Barnes says his church underwent a reorganization and rebranding last year and in 2016 THEGAMECHURCH is positioned for growth. The GAMECHURCH, is located at 2701 Enterprise Road Mitchellville, MD 20721. Services begin at 9:00 a.m.

Congratulations to these Brothers as they continue their important work in the vineyards!

Friday, April 22, 2016

Gamma Pi Annual Talent Hunt Once Again Showcases the Best Youth Talent in the County

Contestants join in curtain call
They really do have talent in Prince George’s County, and every year, the high school youth who participate in Gamma Pi chapter’s Omega Talent Hunt showcase the exciting talent of local youth. That was on display again this year as parents, and friends joined members of the chapter for an entertaining Talent Hunt program on March 12.

A total of 27 students participated in this year’s event, covering four areas of performance: instrumental classical, vocal contemporary, dance contemporary and art. Aston Woolery, of Suitland High School, was named the overall winner of the Talent Hunt. He performed Prelude in C# Minor by Rachmaninoff. He has participated in Gamma Pi’s Talent Hunt before.

Winner Aston Woolery (center) with chapter leaders
The atmosphere was very much reminiscent of the old variety shows that were popular on television in the 1960s and 1970s, when numerous performers would appear on one show. The sky-high voices, the sounds of finely tuned instruments, the captivating dance moves and the riveting artwork, all made for an exciting scene that made you think you were in the audience at the old Apollo Theater in New York.

As always, Gamma Pi’s Talent Hunt team of judges was comprised of music and arts professionals and educators, including professors from nearby Bowie State University and the University of the District of Columbia, and the manager for the popular Rhythm and Blues supergroup, Earth, Wind & Fire. Bro. Dr. Leroy Barton, a music educator, chairs Gamma Pi’s Talent Hunt. “It never ceases to amaze me the level and kind of talent we have among our high school students in Prince George’s County.”

Gamma Pi Vice Basileus Tony Lee, standing in for Basileus Brian K.Long, served as Master of Ceremonies. True to form, Bro. Lee kept the audience entertained in between the performances with his well-known stand up routine that included a little falsetto singing. Other category winners of the Talent Hunt are listed below. (Photos by Bro. Raphael Terrell)

Brothers tallying up the judges' scores


Vocal Contemporary
Olowabukola Odediram

Visual Art-Photography
Terris Johnson

Tianna Robinson

Instrumental Contemporary
Langston Hughes II

Classical Piano
Aston Woolery

Instrumental Classical
Graceson Moore

Visual Art – Drawing
Jakema Washington