Though their leadership styles were different, their desire for the growth of the South Carolina Conference Lay was the same. I am a proud member of Bethel AMEC in Ridgeville, South Carolina since October 1969. There, I served as a Steward and Financial Secretary of the church for 30 years, where we instituted a computerized system of checks and balances with an accurate accounting of all monies coming in and going out of the church. I also served as Local Lay President, Christian Education Director and Church School Teacher. Currently, I serve as a Steward, Class Leader and sing in the Chancel Choir. I served as 1 st Vice President, Corresponding Secretary and Treasurer of the South Carolina Conference Lay Organization. I have served as a Conference Trustee from 1985 to 2020 (35 years) and elected to serve as a delegate to the General Conference in 1988, 1992, 1996, 2000, 2004, 2008, 2012, and 2020. I represented the 7 th Episcopal District on the following General Conference Committees; Preliminary Inquiry, Rules, Credentials, Revisions and Episcopal. Currently, I serve as a member of the AMEC General Board.
In my secular job and as a Lay Leader, I use the Democratic management style that is deeply rooted in collaboration. I tried hard to always listen and to be open to new ideas and encouraged members to share their opinions that forged a strong bond and mutual respect between members and officers. We put it to a vote and whatever the majority agrees to; that’s what we do. Most times it works to the organization’s advantage.
I am proud to say that during my tenure as President, the Charleston District Lay Organization was never late with any financial obligation to the District, Conference or Episcopal level of the church and that the attendance grew to over 70 persons at our bi-monthly meetings! Allen University has always been a ministry that we were sensitive to and always supported. To God Be the Glory!
Secularly, I am a Member of New Eden Chapter of the Order of Eastern Star and the Dorchester County Democratic Party. I have been a member of the Dorchester County Board of Disabilities and Special Needs for the past 10 years and am currently the Chairperson for the last 4 years. I am retired from the Dorchester County School District 4 where I served as Attendance Supervisor (DD#3), Guidance Counselor and Assistant Principal. I still enjoy working with young people and currently work part-time as a Behavioral Specialist in DD#4 at Harleyville-Ridgeville Middle School in Dorchester, SC. I love the Lord and adore the African Methodist Episcopal Church. I am a proud graduate of two HBCU’s (Catlin University and South Carolina State University.)
Written by Sister Pat Parker
Submitted by: Brother Cleveland Frazier, District Historiographer