Bishop Clemmons Honored with Street Naming

Bishop Clemmons Honored with Street Naming

Bishop Joseph D. Clemmons
The City of Norwalk Common Council approved and unanimously voted in favor of the proposal to honorarily name Trinity Place to “Bishop Joseph D. Clemmons, Sr. Drive” in honor of Bishop Joseph D. Clemmons, the founder of Miracle Temple Church of God In Christ (COGIC), United Church of Christ in Norwalk, Connecticut.

"I submitted this proposal to give honor to a giant in Christian ministry and to highlight the contributions of Bishop Joseph D. Clemmons, Sr.,” explained Rev. Devale A. Hodge, DMin., Senior Pastor of Miracle Temple Church of God in Christ. “His works and labor of love are well known throughout New England and our nation. His stance for social justice and living out the message of the kingdom has inspired countless people toward the improvement of our communities. It was a pleasure and a delight to submit this proposal as I seek to build upon the rich legacy of ministry begun by Bishop Clemmons. I am grateful that he is still with us to witness and enjoy this historic moment, knowing that his ministry is greatly appreciated and never forgotten."

Clemmons is credited – among other things – with establishing Miracle Temple Church in 1973, helping to rebuild the then Trinity Episcopal Church after a devastating fire and sharing the space with community organizations and other start-up churches, and establishing the South Norwalk Social Service Center to reach the larger community, which focused on senior citizen support, education and after-school programs, youth activities, and much more.

In the request letter, Hodge wrote about the many significant contributions of Bishop Clemmons to the community through public service and deeds and how he is respected for his accomplishments and good conduct. For decades, he shared the facilities of Miracle Temple Church of God in Christ with community organizations and new start-up churches in Norwalk that needed a place to conduct the mission of their organizations and ministries. As a result of Bishop Clemmons’ community engagement and pioneering spirit, the Southern New England Conference of the United Church of Christ named several programs and initiatives in his honor.

“Bishop Clemmons was a stalwart for justice and had the ingenuity to see where ecumenism could stretch not only his COGIC roots but also the historic Connecticut conference,” said Executive Conference Minister The Rev. Darrell Goodwin. “As a child of the COGIC tradition myself who is now privileged to lead the SNEUCC conference I hope I can continue his legacy of ingenuity and vision. I am grateful that Miracle Temple blends these two traditions and am confident that Rev. Dr. Devale Hodge, the new settled pastor, will continue to chart pathways forward for us all together.”

Bishop Joseph D. Clemmons, Sr., was ordained in 1952, completed his Bachelor of Arts in Spanish at Long Island University (1952) and Master of Arts at Yale Divinity School (1969). He later earned the Doctor of Ministry degree at the now Colgate Rochester Crozer Divinity School (1973) in Rochester, NY. Bishop Clemmons continues to be a herald of hope, equity, and African American uplift at ninety-three years of age.

The unveiling ceremony and celebratory activities will be announced later.

Read more about Bishop Clemmons in the Submission letter.


Marlene Gasdia-Cochrane

Marlene Gasdia-Cochrane writes news articles for the SNEUCC website. She is also the editor of the Starting With Scripture newsletter. Contact her if: Your church has a great story to tell about an innovative ministry. You have a prayer request to ...

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