Female Apostle in Triumph the Church and Kingdom of God in Christ
Services - July 22, 2012 - Morning Session -
Atlanta Hilton Airport Hotel
Apostle Orpah Ruth Francis is the second oldest of
twelve children born in Gordon, Alabama to the
late Mr. Hardy Pelt, Sr. and the late Mrs. Ruby
Lee Pelt. The family moved to Fort Pierce,
Florida where she later graduated from Lincoln
Park Academy. Orpah left Fort Pierce in 1963 to
move to Brooklyn, New York.
Brooklyn, Orpah continued the affiliation she
had developed with Triumph the Church and
Kingdom of God in Christ since birth. As a lay
member she held such positions as Tithe
Secretary, School of Wisdom Teacher (teenagers),
Youth Department Supervisor (responsible for
youth training and scholarships at local, state
and district levels), Teacher and Missionary.
1967, she traveled to and from Rochester, New
York doing missionary work. There was no Triumph
Church established in Rochester at that time. To
give the people hope and courage, Rev. Francis
gave the first $5, promising that she would
return to establish the church. In 1968, she
permanently relocated to Rochester, where she
and a childhood friend, the late Mrs. Lee Anna
Smith, founded the Triumph Church in Rochester.
Rev. Francis has been the pastor at that church
since 1970. Worship services were held in a
storefront located at 112 Bartlett Street on
Rochester's west side for the first eight years.
Rev. Francis organized and implemented various
programs and fund-raisers to purchase a $70,000
church facility in 1977 on Rochester's north
side. The mortgage burning ceremony was held
just nine years later.
Francis has always been dedicated and faithful
to God and the church. She is a lifetime member
of the Triumph Church and was the first female
to be ordained in her church which is an
international organization operating in
thirty-six states in the United States, Nassau,
Bahamas and Monrovia, Liberia, Africa. During
her pastorate, Rev. Francis has held such
positions as: Presiding Elder of Bronx and Kings
Counties, New York, District Treasurer,
President and member of the 5th Episcopal
District Board and Secretary for the Board of
Directors of Triumph's School of Prophets,
secretary of the National Board of Trustees and
a member of the Constitution Committee of
Triumph Church. Currently, Rev. Francis is the
chairperson of the National Board of Trustees
and Presiding Elder for the State of New York.
In July 2010, Rev. Francis was set aside as an
Apostle Intern of Triumph the Church and Kingdom
of God in Christ, the first female in the
organization to hold this high honor. Her
ordination is scheduled for July 2012.
Francis, since moving to Rochester, has
been deeply involved in community activities.
She supports many and varied causes, programs
and organizations in the Rochester community.
She finds her greatest fulfillment in consoling
or helping families. She states, "I see the
community as sharing and caring for persons who
are in dire need. My experience in community,
school and church has helped me to understand
that human development is crucial in our times.
There should be ongoing programs, planning,
training and evaluations to help families in the
community to develop, physically, mentally,
spiritually, socially and financially."
Apostle Intern Francis has received numerous
awards, certificates and plaques for her
unfailing effort in serving the community. In
January 2001, First Church Divine and Pastor
Lloyd Oldham honored her by having her picture
unveiled in the First Church Divine Hall of
Fame. She shares this honor with greats like
jazz pianist, Duke Ellington; the mother of the
Rochester Community, the late Ms. Katherine
Terrell; Rochester's own Mayor Bill Johnson;
President and CEO of the Rochester Urban League,
William Clark; and many, many others.
Francis has held the position of
Chairwoman of the Board of Directors for the
Martin Luther King Community Center. She has
served on the Board of Directors of the
Community Child Care Center, the Urban League of
Rochester, the United Cancer Council and
Montgomery Neighborhood Center. She has also
served as a member of the Billy Graham Crusade
Nominating Committee, the Lead Poison Prevention
Committee and the Sickle Cell Awareness
Education Committee. She is the founder and past
president of the Women's Pastoral Support Group
and a member of the board of directors of United
Church Ministries. She is also a lifetime member
of the National Coalition of Title I/Chapter 1
Parents, a member of the Black Educators
Association of Rochester and a member of the
Urban League of Rochester.
graduated from Monroe Community College with
distinctions in Human Services and received a
diploma from Colgate Rochester Divinity School
in Black Church Studies. She has also studied at
Francis retired from the Rochester City
School District in June of 2002 after 32 years
of service in administration and supervision.
She is the mother of two children, Charlie and Sequetta (Charles) and the grandmother of three,
Charles Jerone, Chaz Jerrell and Chase Jeremiah.
Francis is very much loved and respected
by all who come into contact with her. She is
most respected for her tenacity and her ability
to keep on ticking, keep on smiling and keep on
loving God's people everywhere, no matter the
race, religion, age or economic background. She
is a true example of what we, at Triumph,
believe and teach and what God is calling for in
times like these.