Your interest and application is more than welcomed and we look forward to receiving you this year as one of hundreds of Episcopates, Prelates and Servants in this prestigious, exclusive school of learning. You may have been in attendance in years past or this may be your first time; in any event, you will never forget the experience of being in an "Assembly of the Holy" such as the "Joint College of African-American Pentecostal Bishops' Congress."
There are several ground-rules that you might want to observe as you attend the Annual Congress.
You must register for the Congress, even before choosing your hotel, so that you can be assured of admission into the sessions and text books, badge, etc. Registration can be done on-line at our website at www.collegeofbishops.org.
Each Class will be formal. Academicians must be on time for each session. Lateness for classes carry a financial penalty. Our Instructors and Presenters work all year preparing to give you the best information and material and it is incumbent upon you to be timely for the sessions so that you can receive maximum benefit. Additionally, Cell Phones must be in the OFF position during class, chapel or lectures. Ringing of the phone is also cause for a fine.
Each Bishop and/or Cleric is required to vest, daily, in Black Tonsorial; (Black Suit, Black Clerical Shirt or Rabat with White Collar, Black Shoes and Socks or appropriate hosiery for females; Black Suit with a Skirt or Clerical Dress with Black Clerical Blouse or Rabat, and Black Pumps or appropriate Shoes for our Sisters in Episcopacy or Ministry). No person may wear any colors with their Tonsorial except Members of the Advisory Board and the Executive Board. The Members of these Boards may wear the Roman Purple Breast (Blouse, Shirt or Rabat) at any time during the Congress.
Bishops are the only persons allowed to wear a Pectoral Cross with Chain (Gold or Silver). Overseers, Adjutant-Overseers, Adjutants, Administrative Assistants, and other Clergy are restricted to the Nylon Cords and Silver Cross of their distinctive offices. Episcopal Ring and Wedding Rings are the only rings permissible during the Congress. Costume jewelry is not in order and small pearl, gold or silver studs are the only earrings permitted (on females ONLY) while in Tonsorial or Sacred Vestments.
Wednesday Evening is the most formal service of the College. Divine Liturgy and the Annual Sermon is delivered by an invited guest of the Metropolitan-Archbishop. The uniform for that service is Choir Dress for Bishops and Overseers; Cassock and Surplice for Ordained Elders; and Alb with Deacon's Stole for Ordained Deacons. The Annual Processional will begin at Half Past Six o'clock in the Post Meridian (P.M.) and all credentialed delegates are expected to be in place at the hour of worship.
When you register for the Congress, please make certain that you let us know your rank in the Church so that your badge can be printed correctly. Be prepared to prove your office if questioned and remember that you will not be allowed into any of the sessions without having been registered. There will be registration-on-site for those who might be running late, but that will be limited to the very few.
We pray that you will find yourself in God's favor and blessings in this ensuing year. Know of our love and respect for you in the Lord's work and be assured of our continued prayers.
Most Reverend J. Delano Ellis, II, D.D.
Joint College of African-American Pentecostal Bishops