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Andy C. Lewter Jr.

bishop, Full Gospel Baptist Church Fellowship

Bishop Lewter's ministerial career began in 1973 while still a student at Oberlin College majoring in communications and religion. While on campus, Bishop Lewter directed the Oberlin Black Ensemble, served as chairman of Abusua and president of African-Heritage House. He also helped to find the Oberlin Voices of Christ. After graduating with a BA with honors in 1976, he entered Harvard University in pursuit of a master's of divinity degree. Bishop Lewter holds an earned doctorate of ministry degree from the United Theological Seminary in Dayton, Ohio. In Boston he served at the Union Baptist Church with Pastor Melvin G. Brown as an assistant pastor in charge of communications and drama, directing James Baldwin's "Amen Corner." In 1979 he graduated from Harvard Divinity School and spent additional time in a post-graduate study program at Oxford University. In 1985, Bishop Lewter responded to an invitation by the Oakley Baptist Church to come and assume the pastorate. His tenure is marked by the development of a live TV ministry, growth of the membership, and a church newspaper. In 1991, Bishop Lewter made history by leading the New Life Fellowship of Churches in the purchase of WO8BV TV8, Ohio's only African-American religious television station. The station has the participation of approximately 40 churches ranging from Columbus, New York, Chicago, and Atlanta. In February 1993, Bishop Lewter led the African American Religious Connection in the acquisition of their first radio station, WLGO 1170 AM, reaching 16 counties in central South Carolina.