Few Words About The St. Paul Church Family


St. Paul was organized in the early part of 1918 in the home of Mr. & Mrs. Essic Smith, whose vision saw the need of planting an A.M.E. Church in Kenilworth. With other dedicated persons, namely Mr. & Mrs. William Lowe and Mr. & Mrs. Perrin Childs. Services were held in the homes of Mr. & Mrs. E. Smith and Mr. & Mrs. W. Lowe and later in the "flats", a large apartment house on Monroe Avenue. During this period St. Paul was received into the N.J. Conference of The African Methodist Episcopal Church with Rev. J.F. Vanderhorst, Presiding Elder.

In the year of 1925 lots were purchased from Mr. Arthur of Kenilworth, and the ground-breaking services were held to erect the stucco edifice in 1927. The corner stone was laid and Rev. Kelly was the pastor. Bishop William H. Heard officiating, was then presiding Bishop of the First Episcopal District. Services were held in the basement (presently used as a fellowship hall) until 1940; at this time improvements permitted worship on the first floor. Since that time the installation of electricity, water, steam heat has made it a more favorable place for worship. Through many prayers and sacrifices, God has blessed their efforts. It is appropriate that we pause to note the progress and achievements which have been made over the years, such an effort cannot be made without voicing an appreciation. For those early dedicated leaders of vision by their labors and faith in God, their hopes for a brighter future and their love for high ideals have been the principles that have brought us thus far on the way. Under the leadership of The Rev. James N. Hoskins and The late Rev. John I. Kilby, restoration and new addition was added to the front of the church.

St. Paul's stands as a beacon light in Kenilworth saying to all that passes by that Jesus is the way, the truth and the light, come unto me all ye that labor and are heavy laden and I will give you rest, take my yoke upon and learn of me, for I am meek and lowly in heart and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden light.

Many great souls have found within her consecrated walls peace and inspiration that has led them out into a world of service for God and humanity, those of us who attempt to carry on are grateful for the opportunity to follow in their path. The purpose of this effort is not to praise individuals past or present, but is an attempt to leave a bit of inspiration for those which may follow. I am grateful to almighty God to be one of the Shepherds of This historical Church.

St. Paul's has been under the administration of Fifteen Bishops and Presiding Elders.

Bishops of The First District
Presiding Elders of The Newark District

Bishops of the First District Presiding Elders of the Newark District
Bishop William Henry Heard 35th The Reverend J. F. Vanderhost
Bishop Evans Tyree 26th The Reverend R. C. Ranson
Bishop Joshua H. Jones 38th The Reverend W. H. King
Bishop Richard Robert Wright 57th The Reverend R. B. Smith
Bishop Decatur Ward Nichols 59th The Reverend A. Bell
Bishop George Wilburn Baber 63rd The Reverend M. M. Ward
Bishop John Douglas Bright 79th The Reverend I. S. Jacob
Bishop Ernest Lawrence Hickman 75th The Reverend D. M. Owens
Bishop Richard Allen Hildebrand 88th The Reverend V. R. Byrd
Bishop Frank Curtis Cummings 95th The Reverend J. W. Johnson
Bishop Philip Robert Cousin, Sr. 96th The Reverend J. H. Johnson
Bishop Donald George Kenneth Ming 97th The Reverend B. C. Burton
Bishop Zedekiah LaZett Grady 111th The Reverend A. Richmond
Bishop Richard Franklin Norris 116th The Reverend J. E. Deas, Sr.
*Bishop Gregory Gerald McKinley Ingram 118th *The Reverend H. L. Grant

*Current Bishop and Presiding Elder


There is no doubt in my mind God is calling us to be world changers! We cannot become what God wants us to become without first becoming fully devoted followers of Christ in our personal and corporate lives. For this reason, St. Paul AME Church developed ministries which incorporates spiritual maturity, community and personal participation.

Our ministries are designed to Equip, Enfold, Edify and Evangelize, thereby...

Click here for more information on our ministries.

Pastors of St. Paul

  1. Rev. A.S. Bryant
  2. Rev. S.L. Rogers
  3. Rev. W.W. Kelly
  4. Rev. J.J. Martian
  5. Rev. A.L. McLain
  6. Rev. A. N. Bush
  7. Rev. E. M. Mitchell
  8. Rev. V. Brown
  9. Rev. L.B. Buchanan
  10. Rev. W.J. Wright
  11. Rev. W.M. Brown
  12. Rev. J.M. Jones
  13. Rev. W.H. Smith
  14. Rev. J. Cohen
  15. Rev. F.N. Williams
  16. Rev. H.P. Speights
  17. Rev. E.E. Adams
  18. Rev. T. Oglesby
  19. Rev. C.F. Milton
  20. Rev. J.E. Jenrette
  21. Rev. J.N. Hoskins
  22. Rev. J. I. Kilby
  23. Rev. Laverne C. McClellan
  24. Rev. Vanessa L. Perry

Our present Pastor is:
       The Reverend Angela Battle

Founding Families


Essic Smith Sr. & Addie M. (Roberts) Smith

Essic Jr. & Clara (Wakefield), Isaam, Jessie Mae, Turman & Louise (Hall), Ebben Ross & Alma (Williams), Essie Mae, Hughes & Jeanette (Bond)

Adie, Audrey, Clara, Essic C., Reginald, Dennis, Wayne, Winifred, Barbara, Ebben Jr., James, Hughes Jr., Elwood, Bruce, Helen

Benjamin & Lillie (Bolgere)
Douglas & Juanita (Saffold)


Cora Lee (Roberts) & Joe L. Paden

Verdell, Avis, Alayna


Alberta, Jimmie, Pearl, Maeola, Comer, Lelia, Annie Will, Roosevelt

Tyree, Equila, Vera, Mary Lou, Harold, Howard, Walter, Louise, Richard, Howard, Donald, Russell, Irving, Carolyn, Ronnie, Julia



Joyce (Jenkins) & Harland Bower Sr.

Harland & Ann
Glenn & Deborah

Rachel, Harland Jr., Teneshia, Cori


Sylvester, Jr. & Wilhelmina, Garvey & Beverl, Herman & Lois (Clark), Dorothy & Edward (Seabon)

Robert, Harold, Paul, Philip, Michael, Garet, Douglas, Theresa, Claudia, Carold, Dorothy, Vera, Garvey Jr., Gordon, Stephen, Calvin, Ira, Taryn

Terms and Conditions
St. Paul AME. All rights reserved
Designed by SLS Web Studio