Paul J. Thomas, Senior Pastor
The Reverend Paul J. Thomas is the dynamic senior pastor of the Historic African Methodist Episcopal Union Church of Philadelphia, PA. The Son of Sharon Betts Thomas and James M. Thomas, Reverend Thomas was born and reared in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
A product of the Philadelphia school system,Reverend Thomas graduated from Central High School and further developed himself by receiving a Bachelor ofScience Degree in Human Services from Lincoln University of Pennsylvania in 2004. Reverend Thomas went onto earn a Master’s of Divinity Degree with a concentration in theology from Turner Theological Seminary of the Interdenominational Theological Center in Atlanta, GA in May 2007. Reverend Thomas completed a Master’s of Education Degree in Special Education from Grand Canyon University in May 2012.
While a student at Lincoln University, Reverend Thomas answered his call to ministry and preached his trial sermon on Sunday, August 10, 2003, at Mt. Tabor A.M.E. Church, Philadelphia, PA (Rev. Martha A. Lang was the Pastor). Bishop Richard Franklin Norris ordained him an Itinerant Deacon in the African Methodist Episcopal Church in May 2007 and an Itinerant Elder in May 2009.
While in Atlanta, Reverend Thomas worked under the tutelage of the Reverend Jeffrey B. Cooper and Trinity A.M.E. Church of Atlanta, GA. He served as the supply pastor of New Hope A.M.E. Church, Haralson, GA, until his appointment to the pastorate of New Bethel A.M.E. Church in Willow Grove, PA. After serving the New Bethel family with distinction for three years, on November 13, 2010, Reverend Thomas was appointed the senior pastor of Historic African Methodist Episcopal Union Church of Philadelphia, PA – a congregation founded in 1809 because of religious discrimination and segregation. Since his recent appointment, membership and weekly attendance has increased, spirits have been revived, and aging deficits have been reduced.
In addition to ministry, Reverend Thomas served in the William Penn School District – Chester County, PA (5 years) as a seventh grade Instructor. He is a member of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc., where he serves as an officer on the executive board for the Abington-Ambler Alumni Chapter. Revered Thomas also serves on the board of directors for SELF HELP Inc., which manages First District Plaza –Philadelphia, PA. Reverend Thomas is a leader and mentor who advocates the empowerment and liberation of all people.