On November 1, 2005, the Pulpit Search Committee officially announced the availability if the pastoral position. Over 170 application were received. In July 2006, the committee had narrowed the selection to five semi-finalist. By September there were two finalists, Pastor Riley K. Curry of Lexington, North Carolina, and Pastor Nathaniel Benjamin, Jr., of Trenton, New Jersey.
On Saturday, October 14, 2006, promptly at 8:00 a.m. the election of a new pastor began. Members were very enthusiastic and some arrived early. The election was supervised by Pastor Arie L. Mangrum, Jr., our interim pastor, Deacons of Second New St. Paul and esteemed officers of the National Capital Baptist Convention. These were Pastor Larry B. West, President, Pastor Lonnie Johnson, 3rd Vice President, and Pastor Be Louis Collenton, President of the Congress of Christian Education.
Members were checked in the main vestibule by Deaconess Vivian Dixon, Vice President of the Deaconess Board, Sis. Leesa McKenzie, Church Secretary, Deaconess Brenda McCutcheon, Joint Board Secretary, and Deacon Arthur Stewart, Board of Directors President, Day Care Center.
A required 60% of registered members in good and regular standing must be present in order for the vote to be valid. By 10:30 a.m. the required number was met.
This being a historical event for Second New St. Paul, members wanted to witness the entire process. They came, they voted, and they remained until the end. The congregation witnessed a tally vote by Pastor(s) West, Johnson, and Colleton. They were assisted by Pastor Charles Cato of the Mount Calvary Baptist Church and Sis. Leesa McKenzie (Church Secretary/Clerk).
After careful review, the final count was: 171 for Pastor Nathaniel Benjamin 53 for Pastor Riley Curry, and 7 invalid ballots. The final count was well received by the congregation of Second New St. Paul Baptist Church.
The Third Administration
On Sunday, December 3, 2006, Pastor-Elect, Nathaniel Benjamin, Jr. officially reported to duty for the first time as Pastor of the Second New St. Paul Baptist Church. He was received at the 8:00 as well as 10:30 services with resounding applause and praise. During the 10:30 service Pastor Benjamin was welcomed to Washington, DC by Ward 5 Councilman Harry Thomas, Jr.
During the period between December 2006 through February 2007, the parsonage underwent extensive renovations. These renovations were accomplished with the spiritual, physical and financial assistance of many members of Second New St Paul. Pastor Benjamin commuted from Trenton, New Jersey every weekend from December 2006 until March 2007 (parsonage now ready) when he and the First Lady officially became Washingtonians.
Wednesday April 25 – Friday, April 27, 2007 at 7:30 p.m. we celebrated the Pre-Installation Revival. The Word of God was delivered by Sons of Second New St. Paul Baptist Church; Pastor Damion Briggs, Eastern Community Church, Landover, Md., Pastor William Thorpe, Zion Baptist Church, Welcome Md., and Pastor Freddie Davis, Pilgrim Rest Baptist Church, Washington, DC.
On Sunday, April 29, 2007 at 3:30, Pastor-Elect Benjamin was officially installed as the third Pastor of Second New St. Paul Baptist Church.
Rev. Dr. J. Wendell Mapson, Jr., Pastor of the Monumental Baptist Church in Philadelphia Pennsylvania delivered the Installation Message during the 10:30 and 3:30 services. Son of Second St. Paul, Pastor Lionel Edmonds, of Mount Lebannon Baptist Church, Washington, DC was the Pastor Officiator for the evening. This service was attended by many Pastors from the New Jersey area, Sons of Second New St. Paul, Pastor Benjamin’s family, members of Second New St. Paul (past and present) as well as members of the immediate community.
With the stewardship of Pastor Benjamin, Second New St. Paul has a renewed energy. The membership began increasing immediately.
Pastor Benjamin is a Man of God whose every deed is lead by the Holy Spirit. He is committed to Saving the Souls of his flock through The Word, by The Word and with The Word.