09172020 McK 

St. Stephen’s Cathedral Church of God in Christ – 
            Celebrating 58 Years in Ministry!  

 September 27, 2020, Founder’s Day – In person and Virtual Experience

 “We’ve Come This Far With The Lord’s Help” 1Samuel 7:12

Link to website:

Bishop George Dallas McKinney, Founding and Senior Pastor of St. Stephen’s Cathedral Church of God in Christ, invites everyone to come and celebrate 58 years of his pastoring on September 27, 2020, 10 am.  This celebration will be conducted in Mission Valley, at the Morris Cerullo Legacy International Center, 875 Hotel Circle S, San Diego, CA, 92108.  Due to COVID 19 regulations, which will be in full effect and adhered to, there is a 250 people admission limit. Therefore, attendance is by RSVP only.  Send an email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..  You will receive a confirmation. The parking structure will open at 9:15am, allowing you ample parking time for the service which will begin at 10am. You may join the virtual celebration via
Facebook Live: @StStephensCOGIC; Ustream: St. Stephens Broadcast Channel; Zoom:  Meeting ID 473466614.  


During the turbulent sixties, racial tensions were high in America and the civil rights struggle to abolish racial injustice in a systemic society rife for improvement.  But one man, George Dallas McKinney, Jr., with a vision, came forth to proclaim that “God was in Christ reconciling the world unto Himself” and to engage in the continuing ministry of redemption and reconciliation.  While establishing a house of worship and healing, preaching the gospel and teaching against sin, he had a clear message of forgiveness, deliverance, hope, love and power and the simple Gospel of “ABC” (Ask, Believe, Confess).  His march to the drum beat of let “justice roll down like water” (Amos 5:4) speaks to a portion of his legacy.

On September 2, 1962, a former Senior Probation Officer who accepted his call to ministry to become a pastor, Elder George Dallas McKinney, Jr., and his wife, Jean, and their two sons and seven other worshippers, planted a church at 5825 Imperial Avenue, San Diego, California.  In 1963 Pastor McKinney and his late wife, Jean, founded the St. Stephen’s Day Care Center.  Along with his responsibilities as Pastor, McKinney continued to pursue his education, earning his Doctor of Theology Degree.  The church grew and flourished, and, recognizing the necessity to meet the desperate needs of a city in turmoil, St. Stephen’s exploded to over twenty-one ministries, including a Halfway House for troubled youth, Big Yellow House (serving HIV Aids victims), Counseling Center, Street Ministry, Feed The Homeless, Jail Ministry and a Christian School (K-12), founded by the late Dr. Jean C. McKinney.  

Three weeks after the newly constructed Christian School building was dedicated in 1984, on the Church’s 22nd Anniversary, the church was torched by a drug addict who was known by some members of the church.  Dr. McKinney conducted services on the church’s front lawn on that same Sunday.  He encouraged himself and the congregation with the scripture that God gave him, ”…to provide for those who grieve in Zion— to bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of gladness instead of mourning, a mantle of praise instead of a spirit of despair...”   (Isaiah 61:3)   The church services were held in a big white tent on the church grounds during the rebuilding of the sanctuary.  There was an overwhelming outpouring of love and support for this ministry and the church was, indeed, encouraged and, with prayers and financial support from all over the world and the help of the community, St. Stephen’s sanctuary was restored!  Since 1985, Bishop McKinney has served as Jurisdictional Prelate of Southern California Second Ecclesiastical Jurisdiction of the Church of God in Christ and in November 2001, he was elevated to the General Board (the presidium) of the Church of God in Christ, Inc.

During these 58 years of pastoring by Bishop McKinney, the congregation swelled to more than 1,500 active members, a 100 voice gospel choir, with four services each Sunday.  The gospel was preached with clarity, power and anointing; backsliders reclaimed, souls added to the kingdom of God, saints inspired and the Name of Jesus lifted up.   More than 50 ministries have been established from St. Stephen’s and thousands of souls saved over the years with the messages of forgiveness and reconciliation.  He is in high demand as a local and internationally inspirational speaker for different venues, including churches, conferences and conventions because of his dynamic and motivating preaching and teaching ministry.

Bishop McKinney, the great-grandson of a slave, whose position as an influential African American church leader, civic activist, and businessman earned him a prestigious nomination by Evangelist Billy Graham for U.S. Senate Chaplain and was second runner up out of 130 nominees.  In addition, Bishop McKinney has received numerous awards and honors in the field of religion and community service including being named "Mr. San Diego" by the San Diego Rotary Club and “Reconciliation Man of The Year Award” by the NEA.  The Shelter Island Rotary awarded him “The Peace Maker Award” in recognition of the work he has done in the area of racial unity, equality and reconciliation.  Bishop McKinney is a world-renowned preacher, orator, licensed marriage, family and child counselor and has authored many books, including “Christian Marriage, An Act of Faith And Commitment”;  the best-selling-book, “Cross The Line: Reclaiming The Inner City for God”, which he co-authored with William Kritlow; and his latest work, a powerful metaphor for the contemporary African-American struggles, “The New Slave Masters”, denouncing drugs and violence.  

Bishop McKinney was married for forty-seven years to the late Dr. Jean C. McKinney and five sons were born to this union, and together, the family built the ministry of St. Stephen’s Cathedral Church of God in Christ.  In 2004, Dr.  Jean graduated to glory.   He later met Attorney Barbara (BJ) Warren and they were married in 2008 and he gained another son. Lady BJ was lovingly received by the congregation of St. Stephen’s and is actively involved as President of the Department of Women.  Lady BJ also works beside her husband, Bishop McKinney, in the Southern California Second Ecclesiastical Jurisdiction of the Church of God in Christ.  In addition, she is also the author of the Christian novel, “When Is The First Lady Ever First?”  On February 6, 2017, Bishop McKinney, First Lady BJ, along with their six sons, their wives and 15 grandchildren received the 2017 “Family of the Year” award by Black Family Preservation Group, Inc.

Bishop McKinney preached his first message at age 15 and from that point God has used him mightily in ministry leading to this Grand Anniversary Celebration of 58 Years Pastoring.   He is an exemplary man of God who has given much to mankind, contributing positively to the spiritual and troubled issues within diverse communities.  Declared from the pulpit, you can hear his dynamic proclamation that, “Ain’t Nobody God, But God!”, and his faithfully quoted scripture, Mark 11:22, “…Have faith in God…”   Passionately, he recites his favorite poem, written by his mentor, Dr. Benjamin E. Mays:  “I have only just a minute, Only sixty seconds in it; Forced upon me, can’t refuse it; Didn’t seek it, didn’t choose it; But it’s up to me to use it; I must suffer if I lose it; Give account if I abuse it; Just a tiny little minute, but eternity is in it.”  

Bishop McKinney, this is your FAITH and your MINUTE!  Come and celebrate with him!