Our Pastor

Rev. Dr. Lacy Edward Simpson, Jr.

Lacy Edward Simpson, Jr. was born in Fayetteville, NC to the late Dr. and Mrs. Lacy E. Simpson, Sr. He graduated Magna Cum Laude from St. Augustine’s College with a B.A. degree in 1989. He received his Master of Divinity Degree from Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary in 1992. He was conferred the Doctor of Ministry Degree from United Theological Seminary, Dayton, Ohio in 1998.

Dr. Simpson is the organizer and Pastor Emeritus of Canaan Missionary Baptist Church, Chicago, Illinois where, under his administration, over 700 souls were added to the work of the ministry. Prior to that, he was the Senior Pastor of the historic Ebenezer Missionary Baptist Church, Chicago, Illinois for four years. Dr. Simpson served as the Senior Pastor of First Missionary Baptist Church, Clayton, NC for 11 years.

Dr. Simpson is a well-known and respected national preacher and lecturer. Based on his love for healing the ills of the community, he has over 31 years of community development experience. He is the past President and CEO of Canaan Community Redevelopment Corporation which serves over 1200 residents in the West Englewood Community of Chicago, Illinois. Dr. Simpson is a professor at Apex School of Theology, Durham, NC. He is also a professor of Hosanna Bible College, Durham, NC. He is the past International Director of Christian Education for the St. Mark Covenant Churches’ Fellowship. He is, also, the past Academic Dean of Students for RMN Bible College of Chicago, IL. He has volunteered as Chaplain/Spiritual Counselor for the HIV/AIDS population in Johnston County, NC through C-BLAC, Inc. He also volunteered as Chaplain at Johnston Health Systems in Smithfield, NC. He is the vice president of the Johnston African American Interdenominational Ministerial Alliance, a conglomerate of faith leaders who promote social justice and equality in Johnston County, NC.

Dr. Simpson is the Executive Director of United Clayton Area Network for Youth and Family Services, Inc. (UCAN). UCAN is a faith-based grassroots organization that provides support, counseling and direction for at-risk youth and their families. It is a community-based organization whose mission is to improve the health status, increase education, and improve the living conditions of citizens who are at risk of being without food, clothing or shelter. UCAN builds the capacity of the community to address life threatening situations. Dr. Simpson firmly believes that social justice is the key to solving many of the health problems African Americans face in North Carolina, including the disproportionate high rate of HIV/AIDS infections.

Dr. Simpson was an advisor for the Southern Regional Community Engagement Team through Project SAVED! where he served on the steering committee for Meharry Medical College. The purpose of Project SAVED! is to enlist faith leaders, health providers, students and administration from Historically Black Colleges and Universities and other community members dedicated to reducing the disproportionate impact of HIV/AIDS among African Americans. Project SAVED! also provides them with the skills necessary to create opportunities and new community venues for at –risk African Americans to access HIV prevention education and testing services.

Because of his passion for helping others pursue a better way of life, Dr. Simpson was an instructor of GED/HRD courses through Johnston Community College where he taught students basic skills to complete GED requirements. He was also the Human Resource Development Instructor and Therapeutic Substance Abuse/HIV Counselor at Johnston Correctional Institute. There he worked directly with adult male inmates by providing them with skills needed to secure employment upon their release from prison.He provided spiritual counseling to individuals in need of support and strength as they faced challenges with their addictions.

Dr. Simpson is an accomplished individual. He is the 2010 NAACP Minister of the Year for the state of North Carolina. He was the 2016 keynote speaker for the Johnston County, NC branch of the NAACP’s annual Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. banquet. He is one of four recipients of the Johnston County Citizens Association, Inc. 2016 Tribute to Excellence award.

He is married to the former Melvis Lavenia Gilliam. Together, they have four children; DeLacey, Justin, Lacy, III, and Lunden.

Dr. Simpson’s ministerial philosophy is Philippians 4:13, “I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me”.