MY BROADCASTING LIFE:
I began my broadcast career at Memphis State University on their jazz station WSMS in 1987. From there she worked in television news at WMC Channel 5 as a vidifont (graphics) operator. By the time I left, 2 1/2 years later, my duties had expanded including writing, editing, and even shooting video for news stories. I took a break from broadcasting and worked in Human Resources for 4 years. In 1994 I became "Eileen The Love Queen" an on-air personality at WDIA, then moved to KJMS (Smooth 101) as "Eileen The Diva". While holding down an air shift, I was promoted to Programming Assistant for WDIA & WHRK (K97). When Clear Channel acquired 2 other urban stations in the market, I was promoted to Assistant Program Director for WDIA, WHRK (K97) and KJMS (Smooth 101). Clear Channel debuted its 1st FM gospel station in December 2002, WHAL 95.7 Hallelujah FM. I was instrumental in launching this station and was given added responsibility when upper management named me Program Director and now I consult the other Hallelujah formats in other cities. Before joining the morning team on Hallelujah, I was heard on the Fun Morning Show with Bobby O'Jay on WDIA.
I grew up in Mt. Pisgah on Weaver Rd, under Rev. A.C. Jackson and Rev. Frank Harris (19 years). Then I matured at Mississippi Blvd. Christian Church under Dr. Alvin O. Jackson (16 years). Now, I am continuing to grow at Greater New Liberty on Webb under Rev. Darrel K. Shack...TGAND 4 Life!
Pastor Jamal H. Bryant of Empowerment Temple AME Church in
Baltimore, Md., says that Ebony magazine has apologized after he openly rebuked the publication for reporting a rumor that the charismatic minister had impregnated a 17-year-old member of his congregation in 2007.
Bryant, 41, wrote an open letter and said that "a hole" had been left in his heart after the rumor was published in the "Scandalous!" section of Ebony's March 2013 issue, which hit newsstands earlier this month.
"Thankfully Ebony magazine expressed a verbal apology as well as a written statement of clarification – which Dr. Bryant has accepted," Nicole S. Kirby, Pastor Bryant's public relations director, shared on Monday with The Christian Post.
Ebony's March 2013 issue, which features "Scandal" star Kerry Washington on the cover, stated in its paragraph-long brief that the "charismatic, flashy pastor" was accused of extramarital affairs, "including one rumor that he impregnated a 17-year-old church member." The publication noted that Bryant's wife at the time, Gizelle, filed for divorce in 2008 after nearly six years of marriage. The couple share three children, while Bryant has another child previous to his marriage.
Pastor Bryant chastised the publication in an open letter
shared online Friday.
"For 67 years Ebony Magazine has been the drum beat for culture in the African American community. John Johnson its beloved founder dedicated his life to safe guarding our image with great integrity,"
said Bryant in the letter titled "PASTOR JAMAL BRYANT REBUKES EBONY."
"On page 124 they published that it's alleged I impregnated a
17-year-old member of my church. This accusation is categorically and completely untrue. To publish this with absolutely no source lends itself to reckless endangerment to my children, my congregation and my community. Ebony is not the National Enquirer. A higher standard is required and the statement jeopardizes my ministry to the youth in my church and community," the Maryland pastor added.
Within 24 hours of Bryan'ts open rebuke, Ebony admitted in an online statement that it "published the outrageous allegation as it was scandalous, not because it was confirmed."
"Our 'Scandals' package in the March 2013 issue is meant to be a look at some of the more outrageous accusations and events in African-American culture," the magazine said in its statement shared Saturday. "With this particular story, we examined actual incidents as well as reported rumors which have captured the attention of our community throughout the years. In some cases, the allegations were never verified; however, the very fact that they went public constituted scandal."
"We understand that Dr. Jamal H. Bryant is now getting inquiries regarding a rumor we referenced in the magazine. We published the
outrageous allegation as it was scandalous, not because it was confirmed. We did not intend to offend Dr. Bryant, and hope that our readers understand the spirit in which the editorial comment was presented," Ebony's statement concluded.
Pastor Bryant had demanded that Ebony make a retraction on
"moral grounds." Although the African Methodist Episcopal Church
minister acknowledged that he "participated in an extramarital
affair" in 2007, he insisted in his letter that no minors were involved.
He added that his own "minor children have been affected" and that he doesn't want them "to have to live through any further nnecessary
"I solicit your continued prayers for my family, forgiveness for myself and accountability from Ebony magazine," he concludes, signing the statement "Flawed but faithful. I remain, Jamal-Harrison Bryant (A Father and Pastor)."
Bryant founded the Empowerment Temple AME Church in 2000, and the Baltimore congregation is comprised of 8,000-10,000 members.