The history of Heard would not be complete without the names of Mr. Sinclair Fields, Mrs. Flossie Wactor Ruffin and Mr. James A. Jenkins, former Sunday School Superintendents; Mrs. Georgianna Parker, Treasurer for many years; Mrs. Wilhelmina Martin, Secretary of the Trustee Board for many years; Mrs. Belle Lester, first elected Church Clerk; and Mrs. Marie H. Wilmore, Clerk from 1947 until 1980.
Rev. Bryan S. McAllister
The Reverend Bryan S. McAllister was born in Wilmington, Delaware and is the oldest son of Rev. Dr. Patricia McAllister and the late Reverend Charles McAllister. He currently serves as the newly appointed pastor of Heard AME Church, Roselle, New Jersey.
A native of Downingtown, Pennsylvania, he attended Norfolk State University in Norfolk, Virginia in pursuit of a Degree in Marketing. After attending Norfolk State University for three years, McAllister entered the United States Air Force where he served in England, Turkey, Japan and Iraq over a period of six years, receiving numerous commendations and awards.
Following McAllister’s discharge from the United States Air Force, he returned to Pennsylvania and began to serve in Mt. Zion AME Church, Columbia under the leadership of Reverend Dr. Patricia McAllister. It was there, in 2011, that he heard and answered the call of God to the preaching ministry. To further his education, McAllister matriculated to the University of Maryland University College, graduating with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Criminal Justice.
In May of 2017, McAllister was ordained as an Itinerate Deacon by the Right Reverend Gregory Gerald McKinley Ingram at the 201st Philadelphia Annual Conference held in Philadelphia. From June of 2017 to May of 2018, McAllister served as Supply Pastor of Bethel AME Church, Marietta, PA. He graduated with distinction in May of 2018 from Payne Theological Seminary, Wilberforce, Ohio where he earned a Master of Divinity Degree, and was also ordained an Itinerate Elder by Bishop Ingram at the 202nd Philadelphia Annual Conference. At the 2018 Planning Meeting of the First Episcopal District, McAllister received his first official appointment to Bethel, Camden, N.J. and served there from June 2018 to July 2020.
In the second year of study at Payne Theological Seminary, McAllister was the recipient of the Peter and Heartha Kampen Memorial Scholarship for academic excellence. This honor is awarded to students who demonstrate extraordinary promise for continuing graduate studies upon completion of seminary. Because of academic excellence, he was chosen by the Seminary to speak to the 2018 graduating class of Master of Divinity Students at the Graduation Banquet.
Additionally, McAllister has a passion for youth ministry, and is the Founder of “My Life Matters,” a mentorship program for young boys ages 10-17. Finally, along with his service to the Church, McAllister has also served as a Group Leader within the Support Homeless Veterans Organization in Philadelphia, leading weekly prayer and Bible Study meetings with military veterans.
He is currently engaged to Ms. Kamaria M. Byrd of Princeton, N. J. Because he believes that only what we do for Christ will last, his ministry is summed up with one verse, Matthew 6:1 which says: “Beware of practicing your righteousness before other people in order to be seen by them, for then you will have no reward from your Father who is in heaven.”