Thousands Attend Convocation at Southeast Church

Ed Laiscell | 10/7/2009, 7:18 p.m.

Thousands passed through the doors of Temple of Praise in Southeast Wed., Sept. 30 to Sun., Oct. 4 to participate in the ministry€s 2009 Holy Convocation. The five-day conference began with Bishop Glen Staples, pastor of Temple of Praise delivering the opening message.

Bishop T.D. Jakes, pastor of the 25,000 plus Potter€s House in Dallas, Texas was honored with an honorary degree from Phoenix University. Also featured were Dr. Cornel West, professor of African American Studies at Princeton University, and Steve Harvey, radio and television personality and bestselling author.

€Bishop Staples wanted to motivate, inspire, and encourage the membership as well as the community of Ward 8,€ said Dr. Sharon Anderson, General Counsel/CDC Coordinator for Temple of Praise. €This is the type of convocation he could have taken anywhere in the area including FedEx Field or the Verizon Center. But his main purpose was to motivate, inspire and encourage the community, so he held it here.€

The theme of the five-day event was €From Test To Testimony€ and every speaker met that goal, Dr. Anderson said.

€Our theme was to encourage people to stand through their trials and tribulations knowing that God was going to help them prevail,€ Anderson said.

West talked of his conversion to Christianity and reminded the audience that they can only overcome their trials with Christ.

Harvey, who admitted this was his first time being asked to speak at a church, was invited by Staples.

€I was sitting out looking in and just wanted someone to invite me in,€ he said. €I€ve learned a lot on my journey, which is no tougher than yours. The truth of the matter is, I€m saved.€

Harvey talked of his three-year span of homelessness and how his mother was a major influence on him and his siblings. He presented four principles that have worked in his life. They are: put God first, family second, education third, then business.

€Do this in that order and God will blow you up,€ Harvey said.

Jakes encouraged everyone to not only know they have purpose, but also know what it is.

€Knowing your purpose will alleviate discomfort, avoid the propensity to be led astray, and not be intimidated,€ Jakes said. €Remember, God will take you somewhere you€ve never been and help you do something you€ve never done.€