South Carolina General Assembly
125th Session, 2023-2024

Bill 1283

Indicates Matter Stricken
Indicates New Matter

(Text matches printed bills. Document has been reformatted to meet World Wide Web specifications.)









A concurrent RESOLUTION


to EXPRESS THE PROFOUND SORROW OF THE MEMBERS OF THE SOUTH CAROLINA General Assembly UPON THE PASSING OF Bishop Frederick Calhoun James, the Ninety-Third Elected and Consecrated Bishop of the African Methodist Episcopal Church, AND TO EXTEND THEIR DEEPEST SYMPATHY TO HIS LOVING FAMILY AND HIS MANY FRIENDS.


Whereas, the South Carolina General Assembly was saddened to hear of the death of Bishop Frederick Calhoun James, the oldest living bishop in Methodism in the world, at the age of one hundred two on April 18, 2024. He was predeceased by his wife of seventy-six years, Dr. Theressa Gregg James; and


Whereas, born in Prosperity on April 7, 1922, he was the son of Rosa Lee Gray and Edward James, and was a member of the Shiloh African Methodist Episcopal (AME) Church. His education pursuits included earning an associate's degree in 1941 from Bettis Junior College in Trenton, a bachelor's degree in history and English from Allen University in 1943, and a Master of Divinity in 1947 from the Howard University School of Divinity in Washington, D.C., as well as attending Dickerson Theological Seminary in Columbia and Union Theological Seminary in New York, New York; and


Whereas, Bishop James became the pastor of Friendship AME Church in 1945 and of Bishop Memorial AME Church in 1946, both in Columbia, and of Wayman AME Church, in Winnsboro in 1947. In 1949, he became dean of Dickerson Theological Seminary and pastor of Chappelle Memorial AME Church in Columbia in 1950; and


Whereas, in 1953, Bishop James moved to Sumter to serve as pastor of Mt. Pisgah AME Church, and in 1960, was elected director of social action of the AME Church. In 1962, he helped organize and chaired the Sumter Citizens Committee, and in 1963, he became president of the Effective Sumter Movement. In 1972, he was elected the 93rd Bishop of the AME Church, and served the 18th and 15th Episcopal Districts from 1972 to 1976, the 12th from 1976 to 1984, the 7th Episcopal District for the State of South Carolina from 1984 to 1992, and the 2nd from 1993 to 1996; and


Whereas, Bishop James led Shorter College in Little Rock, Arkansas, to full accreditation in 1981 and Allen University to full accreditation in 1992. That same year, he served as ecumenical bishop and chaplaincy endorsement officer of the AME Church, and he retired in 1996; and


Whereas, he served as the chair of Allen University and of the Howard Junior High School Center in Prosperity and as a member of the Columbia Housing Authority. He was a member of the delegation to attend the inauguration of South African President Nelson Mandela in 1994. He was formerly a member of the White House Advisory Board on Historically Black Colleges and Universities and of the United States State Department's Advisory Board on Religious Freedom, and he served as national vice president of the Interfaith Alliance; and


Whereas, a life member of the NAACP and Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Bishop James was a 33rd degree Mason. He served on the board of the National Bank of South Carolina and as a member of the Greater Sumter Chamber of Commerce. From 1987 to 1992, he was a Columbia Housing Authority member and vice chair and served as vice president of the South Carolina Christian Action Council; and


Whereas, Bishop James held an honorary doctorate of humanities from Monrovia College in Liberia. In 2003, he received the Order of the Palmetto, South Carolina's highest civilian award, and the Leon A. Love Lifetime Achievement Award from the South Carolina African American Heritage Foundation and Columbia SC 63: Our Story Matters in 2020.  He was inducted into the South Carolina Black Hall of Fame and the Columbia Housing Authority Wall of Fame. Now, therefore,


Be it resolved by the Senate, the House of Representatives concurring:


That the members of the South Carolina General Assembly, by this resolution, express their profound sorrow upon the passing of Bishop Frederick Calhoun James, the Ninety-Third Elected and Consecrated Bishop of the African Methodist Episcopal Church, and extend their deepest sympathy to his loving family and his many friends.


Be it further resolved that a copy of this resolution be presented to the family of Bishop Frederick Calhoun James.


This web page was last updated on April 23, 2024 at 02:19 PM