FIRST FAMILY—Back row, from left: First lady Jamie and Rev. Vincent Campbell. Middle row, from left: Christian, Joshua and Selestina Campbell. Front row, from left: Helena and Zechariah Campbell.
Along with his religious and professional work, Rev. Campbell has and continues to serve on many boards and commissions.
For nearly 40 years Rev. Winsett served as the senior pastor of Ebenezer. He not only left his legacy in the church, but also outside its edifice as a pillar in the community. When asked about any concerns he may have in regards to trying to fill his shoes, Rev. Campbell said although he respects him and the legacy that Rev. Winsett has left at Ebenezer, he has no intention of trying to fill his shoes or any other pastor’s shoes.
“Reverend Winsett is still wearing his shoes and I don’t have any intention or reason to feel that I have to feel that I have to fill his shoes. Rev. Winsett is still an important part of the Hill District and is a leader in his own right. I believe I bring my own set of gifts, talents, skills and experience to this office. God has equipped me for the work he has called me to do.”
Although Ebenezer’s role in the Hill District, the Black community and Pittsburgh as a whole, has remained constant, socially the role of the church in the Black community is no longer what it used to be. When asked his thoughts, Rev. Campbell said, “I think historically it has changed. There was a point in the history of the Black community where the Black church was THE leader in the Black community because the church in some sense was our government. It was our representation.
The church was our social service agency, our educators were there and African-Americans historically learned more in the church than they were offered in the public school system.
CLERGY PRAYER—All the clergy in the church gather together to pray over Rev. Campbell and his wife, Jamie.
“The African-American community had to rely heavily on the Black church for things that others could go to government agencies and other businesses to receive. For whatever reason churches became introverted-they were looking at what was going on inside the church without an eye as to what was going on in the community.”
Although he agrees the role has changed, Rev. Campbell said that with all the pastors working together, they can reclaim the stake of the Black church in the community. “Many of the stakeholders in the Black community are in the Black churches.”
Along with Rev. Campbell, Ebenezer also welcomes his wife, Jamie, who was previously the executive director of a child learning center in Nashville, and their five children-Selestina, Christion, Joshua, Helena and Zechariah. In his spare time, he said he enjoys golf, exercising with his children, sports, especially the Steelers, reading, and being a master level player and studier of chess.
Ebenezer is on the move and Rev. Campbell is ready to take the lead.
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