Canaan Baptist Church of Christ
Serving from the Heart of Harlem since 1932
Press Releases > Sixth Pastoral Anniversary
Sixth Pastoral Anniversary
Dr. and Mrs. Thomas D. Johnson, Sr.
New York, NY -- Apr 8, 2012 --
Canaan Baptist Church of Christ - 132 West 116th Street, New York, NY 10026
Telephone 212-866-0301    




MEDIA CONTACT:[email protected]

Canaan Baptist Church of Christ Honors
the Rev. Dr. Thomas D. Johnson, Sr., Senior Pastor

Celebrating the Sixth Pastoral Anniversary: Thirty-Eight Years of Pastoral Ministry
Advancing the People of God Through Word, Worship, Witness and Work

New York, NY (April 8, 2012) - The historic Canaan Baptist Church of Christ congregation will celebrate the Sixth Pastoral Anniversary of Dr. Thomas D. Johnson, Sr.,Senior Pastor and pay tribute to his Thirty-Eight years of pastoral leadership, preaching and teaching the Gospel of Christ. During the weekend of April 21st and 22nd, the congregation, family and friends will gather to rejoice in observance of this auspicious occasion for the esteemed Senior Pastor and First Lady Donna B. Johnson. The anniversary weekend will begin with a formal banquet in Founders Hall of the church on Saturday, April 21st at 5:30pm.

The anniversary celebration will continue on Sunday, April 22nd during the 11:00am worship. The Rev. Dr. Haywood T. Gray, Executive Secretary -Treasurer of the General Baptist State Convention of North Carolina Inc. will preach the celebratory sermon. A tribute will be given centered on the theme, The Cedar of Canaan . The music ministry will be provided by The Canaan Mass Choir. “We congratulate Dr. and Mrs. Johnson on this milestone. The Canaan family is grateful and thankful to Dr. Johnson, a servant of God, for blessing us with his spiritual leadership and vision. He is a pastor of great faith and integrity. The Official Board and Canaan family will continue to support our pastor as he leads Canaan into the twenty-first century as a progressive church," said Deacon Michael Russell,Chairman of the Official Board.

Dr. Thomas D. Johnson, Sr. is the fourth pastor of Canaan Baptist Church of Christ. Much has been accomplished during his six years as Canaan's spiritual leader. Dr. Johnson, a powerful preacher and teacher of the Gospel, has engaged the congregation into embracing a new vision and implementing his strategic plan for a new era at Canaan. Under his leadership, an 8:00am Sunday worship service was added to the worship schedule, new ministries have been consecrated including the Young Adult Ministry, while others are in development including a Women's Ministry guided by First Lady Mrs. Donna B. Johnson.

Dr. Johnson's passion for a bible literate congregation lead him to create a new Christian Education Board, to teach Wednesday night young adult bible study and Thursday night church wide bible study. With the backdrop of current economic and social unrest, Dr .Johnson has encouraged disciples to embrace the spirit of stewardship, social action and volunteerism. As a result, the beautification of the sanctuary by volunteers is ongoing, a capital fund campaign is in place and the Institute for Public Policy and Action has launched a leadership program to teach, train and develop community leaders. On the eve of Canaan's Eightieth Anniversary, Dr. Johnson has charged the congregation to plan a reunion weekend in July to unite family and friends in faith and fellowship. With faith, Dr. Johnson is leading the Canaan Family to be a greater Christ-centered congregation committed to spiritual and community service and social justice.

Prior to his election to pastor Canaan Baptist Church of Christ, Dr. Johnson served as Pastor of Bethel Baptist Church in Danville , Virginia . His nineteen years of service to this congregation was preceded by a pastorate of five years at West End Baptist Church , Reidsville , North Carolina . In addition to his pastoral service, Dr. Johnson is the Executive Director of the Canaan Senior Service Center, the Second Vice-President of New York Progressive Baptist Convention, Incorporated and serves the Harlem community as a member of the Board of Directors for Harlem Congregations for Community Improvement, a board member for National Action Network, a member of the Minister’s Conference of Greater New York, Chairman of the Ecumenical Advisory Committee, is also a member of the Minister’s Conference of Greater New York. He is a proud member of the Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity Incorporated.

Dr. Johnson is a native of Springfield , Ohio . He holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Sociology from Central State University, Wilberforce, Ohio; a Master Degree in Adult Education from North Carolina A&T State University in Greensboro, North Carolina; A Master of Divinity (Magna Cum Laude) from Hood Theological Seminary in Salisbury, North Carolina; and the Doctor of Ministry, conferred with distinction, from Drew University, in Madison, New Jersey. Dr. Johnson has served on the faculties of Averett University and Danville Community College , Danville , Virginia ; and Bluefield College , in Bluefield , Virginia . Dr. Thomas Johnson is married to the former Donna Bradley for 36 years. They are the proud parents of two children and two grandsons.

About Canaan Baptist Church of Christ

Canaan Baptist Church of Christ was founded in 1932 and will celebrate its Eightieth Anniversary on May 20, 2012. It is located in the heart of Harlem at 132 West 116th Street. Sunday worship is 8;00am and 11:00am. Dr. Thomas D. Johnson, Sr. is the senior pastor; civil and social rights activist, Rev. Dr. Wyatt Tee Walker is pastor emeritus. The church sponsors more than 50 outreach ministries meeting such diverse needs as housing, senior services, health and wellness, HIV/AIDS and anti-drug abuse. Canaan was the first church Nelson Mandela visited in Harlem; the last place the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. spoke in the city before his assassination.

All are welcome to attend the anniversary worship service April 22, 2012, at 11:00am. For more information call (212)-886-0301, ext, 127 or email [email protected] or visit


Dawn M. Hill
Public Affairs, Media and Public Relations Liaison
Canaan Baptist Church of Christ
132 West 116th Street
New York, NY 10026
ph (212) -866-0301, ext 127
fax (212) 865-6150



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