We believe the Bible to be the inspired, the only infallible, authoritative Word of God.
We believe that there is one God, eternally existent in three persons; the Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
We believe in the deity of our Lord Jesus Christ, in His virgin birth, in His sinless life, in His miracles, in His atoning death through His shed blood, in His bodily resurrection, in His ascension to the right hand of the Father where He makes intercession on the behalf of the believers; and we believe in His return in power and glory.
We believe that for the salvation of lost and sinful people, regeneration by the Holy Spirit is essential.
We believe in the ordinances of water baptism by complete immersion and Holy Communion to depict the Lord’s Supper.
We believe in the present ministry of the Holy Spirit by whose indwelling the believer is empowered to live a holy and victorious life.
We believe in the resurrection of both the saved and the lost; they that are saved into the resurrection of eternal life and they that are lost unto the resurrection of eternal damnation.
Ekklesia International held its first board meeting in the District Heights, Maryland home of Bishop Stephanie Stratford and her husband, Thomas, the summer of 2007. Shortly thereafter, Ekklesia opened its doors to serve the community and the Body of Christ at 9244 East Hampton Drive, Suite 620, Capitol Heights, Maryland on Sunday, September 2, 2007.Ekklesia was consecrated and Bishop Stephanie was installed as Pastor on Sunday, January 6, 2008, by Galilee Baptist Church of Suitland, Maryland, led by Pastor Lloyd T. McGriff, D.Min.
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In the course of our first year, we have been blessed to baptize nine young people; hosted two youth events; held a voter registration drive and community day event, a Women’s Conference, a Church Compliance Seminar, a Church Growth Seminar; and, provided 50 Thanksgiving baskets for families in the community.
We also held our first annual RhemaFest in January 2008, as well as a dynamic Spring Revival. During our first anniversary service, September 7, 2008, we were honored to ordain seven men and women into the Diaconate Ministry, as well as install its first Chairperson, Deacon Jerome Bragg.
In 2009 we are blessed with continued growth through the birthing and baptizing of new converts. We have also been blessed to expand our facilities to accommodate the increase in membership and ministry activity.In 2010, Ekklesia entered into covenant relationship with Bishop Benjamin T. Douglass, Cleveland Ohio, as our Presiding Prelate. That year in April, we held our first Holy Convocation during which time we ordained our first two elders and 5 deacons. We also consecrated two deacons as vice chairperson of the Deacons Ministry and Trustee Board.
On January 24, 2011 our facility was completely destroyed by water damage and we began holding our services at 3701 Meadowview Drive, Suitland, MD., where we worshipped for 10 months. One morning, while diligently searching for a location of our new home, Bishop Stephanie received a call offering us an opportunity to acquire a building which has become our new location. We now worship at 4205 37th Street, Brentwood, MD 20722.
Bishop Stephanie Stratford, D. Min.
Dr. Stephanie Stratford is the Presiding Bishop and Lead Pastor of Ekklesia International, headquartered in Brentwood, MD, USA. Ekklesia International is a global network of churches that provides apostolic oversight, biblical leadership training, and ministry support for pastors and future Kingdom leaders in the United States, Nigeria, Liberia, South Africa, Uganda, Belize, and Kenya.
Dr. Stratford is an entrepreneur and a writer. She is the author of "God Speaks to Women: Lessons for the Millennial Generation" and "Living a Spirit-Filled Life." Her book "Moments in Church History: From the Ancient Church to the Protestant Reformation" will be released in 2022. She is also a contributing writer for the YouVersion Bible App on Bible.com. Dr. Stratford is the Dean of the Apostolic Bible Institute, based in Durham, North Carolina, under the leadership of Dr. James L. Spence. She is certified as a "Leader of Learning" by Harvard University.
Dr. Stratford is a native of Washington, D.C., and has served the Body of Christ for forty years. She holds a Master of Ministry in Leadership degree from Richmond Virginia Seminary and earned her Doctor of Ministry degree from HBCU, Virginia University of Lynchburg, School of Religion in Lynchburg, Virginia.
Dr. Stratford is married to Deacon Thomas Stratford. She says her greatest treasures are her seven children, five of whom she homeschooled for seven years, which allowed her the privilege of having them with her as she traveled the country evangelizing for the Kingdom of God.
Elder Robert Jennings
Pastor Robert Jennings serves as the Executive Pastor of Ekklesia International in Brentwood, MD. Before accepting the role of Executive Pastor, Elder Robert operated in various capacities of leadership, with a tenure of 13 years under the covering of Bishop Stephanie Jennings-Stratford, D.Min. He has furthered his education at the Maple Springs Baptist Bible College and Seminary and Liberty University. In addition, he serves on the Executive Board of the Prince George’s County Chapter of the Gospel Music Workshop of America, Inc.
Pastor Robert’s creative teaching style coupled with humor and storytelling allows for his presentation of the Gospel to meet every listener where they are. He strives to pursue God wholeheartedly and prays that his delivery will not just be found relevant, but also evoke the change needed to bring deliverance, healing and freedom. Pastor Robert resides in Upper Marlboro, MD with his bride of 8 years, Jayniece Jennings. Together they parent 4 amazing children (Little Jennings); Ian, Lily, Ellington and Olivia.