Rev. Betty Deas Clark ‘Grateful’ for Reception at Bethel AME Church in Georgetown

Rev. Betty Deas Clark, center, pastor of Mother Emanuel AME Church waits for the processional during a memorial in Charleston, S.C., Friday, June 17, 2016 on the anniversary of the killing of nine black parishioners during bible study at the church. AP PHOTO/CHUCK BURTON
Rev. Betty Deas Clark, center, pastor of Mother Emanuel AME Church waits for the processional during a memorial in Charleston, S.C., Friday, June 17, 2016 on the anniversary of the killing of nine black parishioners during bible study at the church. AP PHOTO/CHUCK BURTON

Georgetown’s Bethel AME Church installed the Rev. Betty Deas Clark as its new pastor, more than five months after she was named as the successor to the minister slain in Charleston’s Mother Emanuel shooting last year.

On Thursday, Clark was introduced to the church’s officers in a series of private meetings, two days after media outlets reported she would no longer minister at Emanuel AME.

Clark was named Mother Emanuel’s pastor about seven months after the Rev. Clementa Pinckney and eight parishioners were shot and killed during worship service on June 17, 2015. The man charged in that shooting, Dylann Roof, will stand trial in early November.

The reasons for Clark’s reassignment are still unclear after less than six months of service at Emanuel AME. When contacted by Times staff, Clark declined to comment on her new position, but said she appreciated the welcome she received at Bethel.

“I met with the officers of Bethel and they met me with open arms,” Clark said. “For that, I am grateful.”

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Source: South Strand News | Max Hrenda