Beloved is a diverse, welcoming, grace-filled community that celebrates all people as precious children of God. We offer sanctuary for people who have not felt at home in traditional churches. Folks from all walks of life come together to grow in relationship with one another and with God. We seek healing and wholeness for ourselves, our city and our world.
We are an Open-and-Affirming Congregation of the Southeast Conference of the United Church of Christ. At Beloved Community, we invite you to come as you are, be who you are, and grow toward who you were created to be!
Pastor Angie Wright
Rev. Angie Wright founded Beloved Community Church in 2000. A bi-vocational minister, she also serves as the Associate Director for Greater Birmingham Ministries and as Chairperson of Alabama Coalition for Immigrant Justice.
For over thirty years, Angie has been a leader in community and faith-based organizing for racial and economic justice. She served as the Associate Director of the Birmingham Center for Affordable Housing from 2000 – 2011 and as the Executive Director for Leading Edge Institute, preparing collegiate women to be leaders in social change from 2007 – 2009. Angie was the Director of the Katrina Resettlement Program of Alabama, creating and managing a $19 million program serving over 2,000 families. From 1995 – 2000, she served as the Program Coordinator for the BEAT community revitalization effort in the inner-city of Birmingham. She was the co-founder of Alabama Arise, a statewide coalition of organizations which lobbies on poverty issues. From 1989 until 1993, Angie was the founder of Good Work Self-Employment Project and founding Executive Director of the Durham Affordable Housing Coalition, both in Durham, NC.
Angie received her B.A. from Davidson College (N.C) in 1978, and her Masters of Divinity from Duke Divinity School in 1995. She was ordained by the United Church of Christ in 1997. She has two sons, Frank and Luke Norton. Rev. Wright was honored as Outstanding Woman in the Community by the University of Alabama in Birmingham in 2003.
Music Director LeNard Brown
Anyone who has been to one of Beloved’s services knows that the music rocks! Worshipers are treated to an eclectic mixture of jazz, soul, black spirituals and old-timey hymns with a jazzed up beat. Beloved’s music director, LeNard Brown, is responsible.
LeNard is one of the founding members of The Controllers, a soul and R&B group that was formed in the 1970s. The Controllers scored multiple gold records and numerous top 10 hits. The group opened for famed star Anita Baker at Radio City Music Hall, and Stevie Wonder joined the group on one of their albums.
LeNard came to Beloved as a founding member when Rev. Angie called him and asked if he would lead the music at the new church. LeNard had always told Angie that if he ever found the right church, the music would be something special – not your typical church music.
And did he deliver! LeNard united some of the best musicians in Birmingham in Beloved’s orchestra. His star quality and music connections bring some of the best guest artists to our church every week.
LeNard says that he chooses the music for each week’s service based on his spiritual insight and in consultation with the pastor. LeNard welcomes special requests and loves to hear from you about what you want to hear.
Nowadays, you can hear LeNard interview some of the most famous soul and R&B artists on his weekly radio show on 98.7 KISS FM each Saturday morning from 8-10 a.m. You’ll hear LeNard trumpet Beloved on his show, which he calls the most loving and accepting church he’s never known.
LeNard is a native of Fairfield and has lived in the Birmingham area his entire life. LeNard’s son, LeNard Gerron Brown, is a medic stationed in Okinawa, Japan in the U.S. Navy.
2014 Church Council
Mark Kelly, Moderator
Denyse Thornley Brown, Vice-Moderator
Robyn Hyden, Treasurer
Grace Roberts, Secretary
Joyce Hill Milligan
Rev. Angie Wright
LeNard Brown, Ex-Officio
Beloved Community Church
(205) 595-6080 firstname.lastname@example.org