Reverend Dr. Eric L. Leake was born August 11, 1963, in Troy, North Carolina and reared in Mount Gilead, NC. Reverend Leake is married to the lovely Jean McMurray Leake. They have four beautiful children one daughter, Jessica, three sons, Joshua, Caleb, and Elijah. He has one grandson, Jeremiah Andrew.
Reverend Leake preached his first sermon, January 6, 1985, at the age of 21 at the McAuley Memorial A.M.E. Zion Church in Mount Gilead, NC. He served as the interim pastor of McAuley Memorial and Snow Hill A.M.E. Zion Churches in Mount Gilead, NC. He served as the Pastor of the Hudson Grove and Redding Springs A.M.E. Zion Churches, Indian Trail and Waxhaw, NC. He also served as the pastor of Troy Chapel A.M.E. Zion Church, Troy, NC. Pastor Leake served as the longest tenured pastor of Greater Warner Tabernacle A.M.E. Church, Knoxville, TN, from January 24, 1993, to December 2009. He was appointed the Presiding Elder of the Knoxville District, Tennessee Conference, A.M.E. Zion Church from June 2006 to December 2009. He presently serves as the Pastor of Martin Temple A.M.E. Zion Church, Chicago, IL. He is the Chairman of the Board of Christian Education for the Michigan Annual Conference.
While at Greater Warner Pastor Leake initiated the Five Ships of Ministry: Discipleship, Worship, Stewardship, Fellowship, and Leadership. He has also published a workbook with cassettes on the Seven Steps (components) to Church Renewal. This work outlines the methods and means for revitalizing dying congregations, especially in mainstream denominations. The components are: Leadership, Prayer, Fasting, Scripture, Vision, Action, and the Holy Spirit. Pastor Leake has also developed a prayer ministry that has not only reached members of the congregation, but persons throughout the community and city of Knoxville.
Pastor Leake graduated from West Montgomery High School, Mount Gilead, NC, in 1981, and Harris Barber College in 1982. He received an Associates Degree in Applied Science in 1985, from Montgomery Community College, Troy, NC. He did further studies at Shaw University in Raleigh, NC and received the Bachelor of Science degree in 1990. In 1993, Pastor Leake completed one unit of Clinical Pastoral Education of Baptist Hospital of East Tennessee, Knoxville, TN. In 1995, he earned the Master of Divinity Degree from Hood Theological Seminary, Salisbury, NC. In December 2004, the Reverend Eric L. Leake completed requirements for the Doctor of Ministry Degree from United Theological Seminary, Dayton, Ohio. The project title was “Spiritually Intentional Disciples: Praying and Growing in Phases in the Greater Warner Tabernacle A.M.E. Zion.” We are thankful to God for continuing to equip Pastor Leake for ministry to advance the Kingdom of God by “Launching Out Into the Deep: Bringing People In, Growing People Up, and Sending People Out.”
He is guided by the Holy Spirit to live a life of Wisdom and Obedience to God.