Second Baptist Church of Los Angeles in the words of its pastor

By Kunal Bambawale

Click on the photo below to watch an audio slideshow:

For Pastor Dr. William Epps, speaking to the congregation at the Second Baptist Church of Los Angeles is always nerve-wracking. He has spent a quarter-century interpreting the Bible for the South LA community, and yet, the weight of responsibility continues to weigh heavily on his shoulders. He takes his job very, very seriously.

A self-confessed introvert, Dr. Epps draws most of his energy from time spent alone, when he can gather his thoughts and reflect. It can be tough getting him to open up — and, at well over six feet tall, dressed in black, he cuts an imposing figure. But when Dr. Epps does speak, about the issues that interest him, his words carry an intellectual and spiritual authority. He is without doubt a very wise man.

He has pastored the the oldest African-American Baptist church in the City of Angels since 1987. The church, a magnificently imposing structure that towers above the modest homes on Griffith Avenue in South Los Angeles, creaks with age and history. Inside, the place brims with energy. This is a building steeped in history.

The Second Baptist Church is located at 2412 Griffith Avenue, Los Angeles, CA 90011