United Methodist bishops honor scholar, advocate Rev. Dr. McClain
November 24, 2020
WASHINGTON, D. C – The Council of Bishops of The United Methodist Church is honoring and remembering the legacy of the Rev. Dr. William Bobby McClain, a distinguished scholar, pastor, advocate and educator who died on November 18, 2020 at age 82.
COB President Bishop Cynthia Harvey sent a condolences letter on behalf of the COB to Mrs. Jo Ann McClain, widow of Rev. Dr. McClain. Mrs. McClain served as administrative assistant in the COB office before she retired. In the letter, the bishops thanked the Rev. Dr. McClain for his dedication to ministry and education and for how he touched millions of people.
“We honor his life as a professor who molded the lives and ministries of hundreds of United Methodist leaders in the 34 years he taught preaching and worship at Wesley Theological Seminary in Washington, D.C. He also touched the lives of students at Boston College, Harvard University, Northeastern University, and Emerson College,” the letter said.
The bishops also acknowledged the work that Rev. Dr. McClain did as an elder in the UMC, offering pastoral care Union UMC in Boston, and Tindley Temple UMC in Philadelphia. He chaired the committee which produced the hymnbook, Songs of Zion, which sold more than 2.5 million copies.
He also the author of “Travelling Light: Christian Perspectives on Pluralism, Black People in the Methodist Church: Whither Thou Goest, and with the late Grant Shockley and Karen Collier wrote, Heritage and Hope: African American Presence in United Methodism.
“We are praying that God’s comforting arms will encompass you and the entire McClain family during this painful time. We are praying that God’s grace will provide you with the strength needed at this time of bereavement,” the letter signed by Bishop Harvey said.
Click here to read the full letter from the Council of Bishops
The virtual celebration of Rev. Dr. McClain’s life will be:
Dec 5, 2020 at 2 PM Eastern Time.
Please click the link below to join the webinar:
Or directly on YouTube: asburyumcdc
Rev. Dr. Maidstone Mulenga
Director of Communications - Council of Bishops