For the first time in its 63-year history, the First Baptist Church of Crown Heights held a glorious revival as it celebrated the elevation of the Rev. Daryl G. Bloodsaw to its pastorship. Bloodsaw is only the second pastor of this great and respected congregation.
His elevation to pastor comes in the wake of the passing of the Rev. Dr. Clarence Norman, the founder and pastor of the First Baptist Church for more than 62 years. Reference was continually made during the celebration that Norman had prepared the church for this occasion and the gem within their midst, Bloodsaw, was clearly identified.
Starting with the highly demonstrative sermon of the Rev. Dr. Winfred M. Hope, “Empowering God’s People to Transform Society,” followed by the contemplative sermon of Dr. H. Beecher Hicks Jr., preaching with authority and closing with the encouraging message of the Rev. Shannon O’Neil Smith Sr., “Prayer Still Works,” the weekday celebration was extremely provocative and profound. The ceremonies were presided over by Deacon Ron Newman, Sister Denise Hinton and the chairman of the Trustee Board, Brother Robert Lewis.
The celebration continued Sunday with a very strong and personal message to Bloodsaw and the First Baptist Church congregation from the Rev. Dr. Marvin A. McMickle, “Something That Is Greater Than the Love of God.” The celebration was brought to a resounding conclusion Sunday evening in the Service of Elevation, presided over by the Rev. Dan J. Craig. Its highlight was a loving message to Bloodsaw and the congregation by the Rev. Dr. Calvin O. Butts III, urging a strong partnership of fellowship in the Gospel.
Several elected officials made remarks and extended their greetings to Bloodsaw and the church congregation, including U.S. Sen. Charles Schumer, Rep. Hakeem Jeffries, Public Advocate Letitia James, Brooklyn D.A. Kenneth Thompson and Assemblyman Walter Moseley. Pastoral greetings were also issued by the Rev. Dr. Kirkpatrick Cohall, the Rev. Dr. C. Vernon Mason and the Rev. Shannon O. Smith.
The elevation service concluded with the Acts of Investiture, with the Rev. Dr. Edward L. Hunt presiding. During the investiture, the Rev. Dr. Gary V. Simpson gave the charge to the new pastor as he urged Bloodsaw to love the people and preach the Gospel. McMickle then issued a charge to the church to hold up his hand on both sides, which was followed by the presentation of the Hymnal by the Rev. Craig B. Gaddy Sr., the presentation of the Holy Bible by the Rev. Dr. Adolphus C. Lacey and the Prayer of Installation by the Rev. E. Lawrence Aker III. After the Presentation of the Robe by the new first lady, Brenda Bloodsaw, Lewis and the chairman of the Deacon Board, Deacon Bobby Burch, the church erupted in praise as the newly elevated pastor rose to accept the new role that he described as the extension of a “love affair” designated by the Lord.
The festivities were enhanced by the Abyssinian Baptist Church Choir and the Music and Dance Ministry and the Mass Choir of the First Baptist Church of Crown Heights. “To God be the glory.”