The Reverend Frank Reid III delivered his final sermon to his beloved Bethel AME Church in Baltimore, Maryland today. Reverend Reid served Bethel faithfully for more than 28 years.
While he is leaving Bethel, he has a lot of work ahead of him as he assumes the coveted position as Bishop of the African Methodist Episcopal Church.
Since his election, Reid said he has been in a state of euphoria.
“It feels wonderful,” Reid told the AFRO. “When you look at the W.E.DuBois’s ‘Souls of Black Folk,’ he said that AME bishops were powerful and productive for our people.”
“I am the first person in the history of the church to be a third generation bishop,” Reid said. Reid’s grandfather, Frank Reid Sr., and his father, Frank Reid Jr., were also elected to the position.
Reid received a unique assignment in his bishop class. He will be the bishop of the Ecumenical office, whereas his classmates were sent to countries throughout the world to start their new careers.
“I will manage the AME’s relationships with the World Conference of Churches and World Methodist Church and I also will chair the denomination’s social action committee,” he said. “I am also in charge of supervising the military and prison chaplains.”
Reid also confirmed that he will be a fill-in for a bishop that is physically ailing and unable to perform their duties, or one who has died.
Unlike the others in his bishop class, Reid can continue to reside in Baltimore, though he will travel extensively throughout the world.
“I will live in Baltimore but not pastor a church,” he said. “I am now the acting pastor of Bethel AME. My home in Baltimore is my office.”
Reid said that a decision on his successor at Bethel AME is up to Bishop James Levert Davis. Davis is the bishop of the Second Episcopal District, which includes Baltimore.
Reid said he will stay out of the process of choosing his successor, saying “that is the godly judgment of the bishop.” However, if Davis were to ask him, he said he would make recommendations.
Congratulations Bishop Reid!