NEW YORK — Bishop T.D. Jakes of The Potter's House in Dallas, Texas, recently sat down with The Christian Post at the American Bible Society's Atrium in NYC to discuss the many projects he has lined up for this year, such as MegaFest 2013, his school of leadership (read more about that here) and a new talk show debuting in the fall on BET. The influential preacher, filmmaker and author also offered his take on the Trayvon Martin-George Zimmmerman case, the particular burdens he feels as a Christian minister and how he deals with critics.
Jakes, who started preaching in 1980 at a storefront church in West Virginia with just a handful of members, now leads a megachurch with four campuses and 30,000 members. In addition to his ministry work, Jakes is known for his best-selling books, box office productions and his humanitarian efforts. However, there are one or two things that ardent supporters might not know about the popular preacher, but which Bishop Jakes revealed in his exclusive interview with The Christian Post.
Below is an unedited transcript of CP's interview with T.D. Jakes. more >>
Megachurch pastor T.D. Jakes says he has been exploring the possibility of taking his School of Leadership curriculum, which offers courses in entrepreneurship, digital media, church media and more, overseas to Africa and Asia, as the Regent University-powered online program prepares to engage its inaugural class.
"We will be sharing some of the curriculum at this year's MegaFest," Jakes told The Christian Post on Wednesday. "We're also, interestingly enough, exploring providing this same curriculum overseas. So we've had some talks with India, we've had some talks with Kenya and various places around the world."
The T.D. Jakes School of Leadership offerings are supported by Regent University's Professional and Continuing Education department and include accredited courses in online certificate programs. As Jakes tells it, the current economic climate makes the leadership school particularly relevant. more >>
Bishop T.D. Jakes was asked to weigh in on Tuesday on whether he thought President Barack Obama's comments on Trayvon Martin after George Zimmerman's acquittal in the teen's shooting death were misdirected, considering the deadly violence plaguing his home city of Chicago.
President Obama spoke out last Friday on Trayvon Martin's killing, which occurred inside a gated community in Sanford, Fla., in February 2012, and expressed his condolences to the Martin family. He also affirmed his faith in the U.S. justice system after a jury found Zimmerman not guilty of manslaughter or second degree murder in the black youth's death. The president added, however, that it was important for everyone to consider the context of some of the discussions surrounding the case, in particular among African-Americans.
"You know, when Trayvon Martin was first shot I said that this could have been my son. Another way of saying that is Trayvon Martin could have been me 35 years ago. And when you think about why, in the African-American community at least, there's a lot of pain around what happened here, I think it's important to recognize that the African-American community is looking at this issue through a set of experiences and a history that doesn't go away," said Obama. more >>
A Birmingham, Ala., pastor outraged over the George Zimmerman not guilty verdict expressed his anger publicly by posting his opinion on a church sign.
On one side of the sign at New Era Baptist Church, led by Pastor Michael R. Jordan, it reads, "George Zimmerman jury supported white racism." On the other side, he posted a reference to the 1983 Baby Doe's rape case in Birmingham: "Rape a white woman and you will die in prison," according to Birmingham News reporter Greg Garrison, who first reported on the sign.
"They're calling me a hate-monger," Jordan told Fox News. "Most whites down South don't like it." more >>
Bishop T.D. Jakes of The Potter's House in Dallas was admittedly shocked by the not guilty verdict given Saturday evening in the George Zimmerman case, and broke away from his normal message during the majority of the worship service on Sunday to discuss the case from the church's stage.
Along with a panel of leaders in various professions, including in law and psychological counseling, and who are church members of The Potter's House, Jakes hit on a wide range of issues that the court case with its racial overtones raised.
"I cannot imagine the devastation of this man and woman (Martin's parents), whose son committed absolutely no crime at all, walking down the street on his way to his daddy's house with some Skittles and a soda, and ends up being followed by someone and ends up with an altercation with someone, and never makes it to his destination," said Jakes, near the beginning of his message. "Those parents are left grieving." more >>
Pat Robertson's Regent University has announced a partnership with Bishop T.D. Jakes of The Potter's House to provide educational tools and resources for leaders from all fields looking to take their careers and skills to the next level.
The partnership, announced this week through TDJ Enterprises, Bishop Jakes' for-profit organization whose stated mission is to "entertain, educate and empower mainstream audiences with practical expressions of God's grace and love," brings Regent University certification to courses provided by the T.D. Jakes School of Leadership. The collaboration also opens the private interdenominational Christian university's online courses to The Potter's House network.
"Regent University provides world-class Christian educational resources to complement our premiere conferences, seminars and other content delivery systems," Jakes, CEO of TDJ Enterprises, said in a statement. "This collaboration offers our faith-centric audiences a gateway to professional learning tools that advance the work of the ministry while also supporting those laymen looking to enhance their corporate leadership and entrepreneurial credentials." more >>