Holding their awards with joy are Dr. Phyllis Qualls, left, and Rev. Dr. Harold M. Love Jr.

NASHVILLE, TN — Rev. Dr. Harold M. Love, Jr., and Dr. Phyllis Qualls garner the top awards at the  annual Organized Lay Luncheon. The event, produced by the Organized Lay, which is the significant arm of the African Methodist Episcopal Church globally and divided into districts.

Celebrating its 30th year, under the theme, “Glorifying God through Our Faith and actions,” president of the Tennessee Conference Lay, Darwin K. Eldridge said,  “This event is a way to celebrate members of the Laity, as well as those in the ministry.  We are proud to celebrate these outstanding individuals.”

Rev. Love was awarded the “Pastor of the Year,” for his leadership as pastor of the historical Lee Chapel A.M.E. Church in North Nashville. He continues to allow the church to be a beacon of light for the parishioners, as well as the community.

“I am honored to be the recipient of this prestigious award and it warms my heart and lifts my spirit. It is about leadership and fellowship and as the pastor, I realize it takes both working together in the Kingdom of God. Lee Chapel also received the Lay Organization of the Year,” said Pastor Love.

Qualls, a member of Greater Bethel A.M.E. Church in South Nashville, and a steward at the church, received the “Lay Person of the Year Award.” This prestigious award honors a Lay Person who has done outstanding work in the church and the community that raises the height of Laity work. Qualls, a member of the Lay at Greater Bethel, produces the quarterly Lay newsletter at Greater Bethel, that has a global reach. “This award means so much to me, because it comes from my church and those who constantly support and lift me throughout the district,” stated Qualls.

Other award recipients include Phillip Johnson, Young Adult of the Year in ages 24-34 and scholarship recipients included Milam Alexander, Payton Lowe, Aria Obey, Kylah Lassiter, and Madisyn Ogburn.

There were 12 Legacy and 12 Pastor Honorees; 16 Adults, five, Young Adults (18-24), three Young Adult (24-30) and two churches nominated for the Lay Organization of the Year. Additionally the largest ticket sales were also recognized.

The Lay’s purpose provide education and training to the entire membership on the history and operations of the church. It has autonomy to make independent decisions for its sustainability.