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Emanuel AME Welcomes New Pastor After Ouster of 1st Female Pastor

Days after the one-year anniversary of the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church massacre, the historic Charleston, South Carolina church heard the first sermon from its new pastor Sunday after the transfer of its first female pastor.

Rev. Eric Manning, who had been the pastor at Bethel AME Church in Georgetown, led his first service at Emanuel, taking over for Rev. Dr. Betty Deas Clark, who was appointed in January.

“A lot of people within the city of Charleston, everyone is asking ‘why, why, why,’ but we come back to … we have to learn how to trust God in everything and with everything and it’s hard,” Manning said during his sermon, Charleston’s local NBC News affiliate reported. “When we do we know that everything always has a purpose.”

reported. “When we do we know that everything always has a purpose.”

While no explanation from Mother Emanuel has been provided regarding Clark’s reassignment, members of Bethel AME Church told the local ABC News affiliate she would will be their new pastor.

Bethel members said that although they don’t know Clark, they welcome her with open arms.

The Christian Post reported that Clark was reassigned a week after skipping the high-profile White House United States of Women summit in favor of going to Orlando, Florida, to comfort survivors of the gay nightclub shooting earlier this month.

reported that Clark was reassigned a week after skipping the high-profile White House United States of Women summit in favor of going to Orlando, Florida, to comfort survivors of the gay nightclub shooting earlier this month.

Clark had replaced state Sen. Clementa Pinckney, one of the nine people fatally shot inside Mother Emanuel on June 17, 2015.

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