Christus Lecture to Explore “Origins and Growth of Black Pentecostalism”

Wed, 01/16/2008 (All day)

Mobile, Ala. – Bishop G.W. Ayers, pastor of Phillips Temple A.O.H. Church of God in Mobile, will be the featured guest speaker at the monthly lecture of the Christus Theological Institute at 7 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 24 in Byrne Memorial Hall on the campus of Spring Hill College.

Ayers’s lecture, “Apostolic Overcoming Holiness:  Origins and Growth of Black Pentecostalism” will discuss the founding of the A.O.H. Church of God in Mobile and how it is part of the black Pentecostal movement, which now has churches around the nation and the world. The A.O.H. Church of God was founded in 1916 by Bishop W.T. Phillip, formerly a minister of the Methodist Episcopal Church, and was originally known as the Ethiopian Overcoming Holy Church of God. Ayers, who serves as International Presiding Prelate of the church, with his headquarters in Mobile, will speak on the history, theology and spirituality of Black Pentecostalism and the A.O.H. Church of God.

Ayers is also the pastor of AOH Churches of God in Birmingham and in Richmond, Calif. After receiving his degree from Bethel School of Theology in Detroit in 1957, Ayers was ordained bishop in 1965.  He founded the Western Regional Bible College in 1974, received a Master of Theology degree from Maranatha Bible College in Union, S.C., in 1977; and Ph. D. in theology from the International Bible Institute and Seminary, Orlando, Fla., in 1994. In 2000, he was elected presider of the Apostolic Overcoming Holy Church of God Inc., by the National Executive Board. 

Christus Theological Institute, housed at Spring Hill College, was formed in 1989 and offers a unique opportunity for grass-roots ecumenism among Christians and churches of the Mobile Bay area.

Admission for Christus members is free and for guests, $2. Byrne Memorial Hall is located near the Old Shell Road entrance to the College. For more information about this lecture or the Christus Theological Institute, please contact the Department of Theology at (251) 380-4660 or by e-mail at