The South Presiding Elder District is one of four presiding elder districts in the Philadelphia Annual Conference. This is the mother conference of the First Episcopal District and of the African Methodist Episcopal Church.
Bethel AME CHurch - Reading
Pastor Alberta Jones
330 W. Windsor Street Reading , Pa 19601
9:15 AM - Church School
10:30 AM - Worship Service
12 PM - Worship Wednesday and Lunch
6:30 PM - Wednesday Night Bible Study
Pastor Alberta Jones
Rev. Alberta Jones was born in Burke County, Georgia. She is a graduate of Delaware State University where she earned a Bachelor of Arts Degree in History and Education. She also received a master’s degree in Administration from Central Michigan University, and a Certificate of Proficiency in Computer Information System from Holy Family College.
Rev. Jones received her religious training from the New Life Bible Institute and the African Methodist Episcopal Church Ministerial Training Institute. Rev. Jones is a graduate of Lutheran Theological Seminary where she earned a Master of Divinity degree. She has pursued further studies at Capella University, the world’s largest learning institution toward a doctorate in organization and management.
A former teacher in the Philadelphia public school system, Rev. Jones is a retired Department of Defense, DLA Troop Support supervisor in acquisition logistics.
In June 2015, Rev. Jones was appointed Pastor of Bethel A.M.E. Church, Reading, Pennsylvania.
Rev. Jones is the former Pastor of Mt. Zion African Methodist Church, Darby Pa.; Wesley African Methodist Episcopal Church, Swarthmore Pa.; and, prior to serving Wesley, Rev. Jones was an associate minister at the Morris Brown African Methodist Episcopal Church in Philadelphia, Pa. Rev. Jones’ current activities include:
District / Conference Level Activities:
- Member of AME Preachers Meeting Philadelphia and Vicinity
- Member of Philadelphia Conference/Connectional Women in Ministry
- Ministerial Institute Instructor, Philadelphia Conference
- Philadelphia Conference Board of Trustees
- National Association of Female Executives
- Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc.
Additional activities: Workshop presenter for Women and Youth Conferences in Philadelphia, Delaware, New Jersey, New York, Alabama, Bermuda on Leadership, Team building, organization strategies, Women and Youth issues, current technology, evangelism etc.
Recognitions: Central PA African American Museum, Reading Pa (“Making a Difference”) award, Guest Chaplain for the Senate of Pennsylvania (First Woman), Invocation at the President Breakfast, Delaware State University, NAACP Darby Branch # 2258- (For untiring commitment and dedication to the community); Philadelphia Conference Church School –(Dedicated Support and Leadership); South District Heritage Award-(leadership and community to God’s people); Defense Supply Center and Navy (Key note speaker for Martin Luther King Jr observance); Federal Women’s program and, Defense Industrial Supply Center-(Women of the Year); American Defense Preparedness Association-(Outstanding service and significant contribution to the security and defense of the United States of America);Community Service Award-(Defense Industrial Supply Center-Project Give)
A Brief History of Bethel AME Church - Reading
- Organized in a Log cabin at Franklin and Apple Street in 1821. Incorporated 1972
- The first evidence of African Methodist Episcopal congregation in Reading is reported in the minutes of the Philadelphia Annual Conference of 1822. Bethel, Reading was the sixth church to join the Philadelphia Annual Conference.
- In 1836, land was purchased at 119 N. 10th Street. Bishop Morris Brown laid the cornerstone on
July 16, of that same year. The congregation grew to such proportions that a larger building was erected in 1867. There were many who made valuable contributions to the legacy of Bethel. Among the outstanding contributors were; Rev. Solomon Porter Hood, Rev. C. Milbourne Smith, Rev. E.L. Peters. Bishop Richard Allen Hildebrand in 1979 laid the cornerstone at 330 W. Windsor Street.
- Bethel, Reading played a key role in aiding and assisting slaves to escape the south by becoming a “Station” in the Underground Railroad System. Mass meetings were held here in the fight for freedom. Because of that and other historical facts the church at 119 N. 10th Street, was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in November 1979.
Our Proud Achievements:
- A Station in the Underground Railroad whereby mass meetings convened and fugitive slaves were housed. Because of these and other historical facts the church at 119 N. 10th Street, was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in November 1979.
- Establishment a museum dedicated to the history of African Americans in Central Pennsylvania. Old Bethel is now the “Central Pennsylvania African American Museum”.
- Bethel Church continues to making contributions to the spiritual, cultural and political development of Reading, Pa and vicinity.