The Words of the Compton Family
New York Region Monthly ACLC Prayer Breakfast
Andrew Compton and Tom Corley
September 16, 2006
The New York Region ACLC held its monthly prayer breakfast for September at the Truth Center for Higher Consciousness (ACLC host church) in Brooklyn, pastored by the Rev. Dr. Kennard Davis. The church sanctuary was filled with around 140 clergy and other participants seated at beautifully decorated tables.
The program was guided by Reverend Davis, who, as our emcee, was an embracing host. Bishop Margie de la Rosa offered the opening prayer and the praise-worship team from the host church kept us in high spirits from the beginning to the end with their music and songs.
The breakfast was a feast served by the members of the congregation, who took good care of everyone. After breakfast we watched a deeply moving video on the ACLC tours to the Middle East. This was followed by the New York Region ACLC Chairman, Bishop Cecil Riley, who presented the goals and objectives of ACLC. He stressed that the ACLC is not like any other clergy association – it has the ability to appeal to people of all religious backgrounds, and not only for fellowship, but to become a powerful force for the Holy Spirit that can move our communities and nation in God’s direction.
In preparation for our keynote speaker two readings were shared. The first, Genesis 3:1-15 concerning the temptation of Adam and Eve, was read by minister Carmel Mcfarlane of our host church. The second reading was words from the founder of ACLC, Rev. Sun Myung Moon concerning the need to love our enemies more than our own children, read by Reverend Desmond Green. In a final preparation for our keynote address our host pastor, Rev. Kennard Davis led all present in a devotional song "A Closer Walk with God" and introduced Rev. Dr. Lonnie McLeod.
The title of Dr. McLeod’s sermon was "Adam, where are you?" He started by saying, I am not a human being; I am a spiritual being having a human experience. He stated that Adam and Eve were immature when they made a wrong choice and committed the fall; the nature of the fall was revealed by their action in covering the sexual part of their bodies. Because of this, sin entered the bloodstream of humankind.
Referring to the sermon title, "Adam where are you?," he said God was not looking for Adam’s physical location; rather God wanted to know where was Adam in his relationship to God. Dr. McLeod said we must ask ourselves that question. He talked about the story of the prodigal son and the necessity of repentance when we are alienated from God. He shared a personal story of how he had experienced alienation from God and could relate to the prodigal son, who came to his senses and repented.
As a result of the fall of the first Adam, God sent the second Adam, Jesus. When we were saved we thought that was it; however, we need to unravel the mistakes so that when God calls us we won’t be hiding like Adam but will clearly answer God, here I am.
Following our keynote address and in preparation for the holy wine ceremony Rev. Davis led us in the song "To Be a Sanctuary" Rev Compton, the pastor of the WestRock Family Church, guided everyone through the holy wine ceremony. He started by asking everyone if Adam and Eve began their family in the Garden or outside the Garden. All agreed that it was outside. He mentioned that in the fall Eve pulled Adam away from God. As a result in the holy wine ceremony the wife, standing in the position of Eve, takes the holy wine first and then shares it with her husband, symbolically pulling him back to God. He concluded with four vows of commitment to pure love towards God, spouse, children, and families in our surrounding world.
At the conclusion of the holy wine ceremony an offering was taken for the keynote speaker and the host church. This was followed by a presentation of certificates of membership to newly joined pastors and plaques recognizing churches who have become members of the United Federation of Churches. These were presented by Rev. Dr. H. G. McGhee Jr., Co-Convener of New York’s ACLC. Rev McGhee then called representatives from different faiths, denominations, nationalities, and ethnic backgrounds to the stage in order to emphasize ACLC’s commitment to taking down walls between different affiliations. He then made an appeal to anyone who was not yet a member of ACLC to sign up today and become a recipient of the many benefits of membership. Dr. McGhee was followed by Bishop Gonzales, who talked about the important role of women and made a strong appeal on behalf of the suffering people of Darfur . Dr. McLeod led us in the benediction followed by a closing prayer from Rev. Davis and a song participated in by all present.
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