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Legacy History

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District Elder James O. Franklin (elevated to the bishopric in 1975) was installed as the second pastor of Christ Temple No. 2 in Indianapolis, Indiana, on November 19, 1967. Seeking to promote sound business practices and help the church establish its own identity, he facilitated the name change to Mt. Zion Apostolic Church in 1969. During these years, the church’s constitution and bylaws were created, and a choir, the Youth Training Council, and the Brotherhood and Sisters Auxiliaries were organized. The foreign missions program sponsored orphanages in Haiti, Jamaica, and Africa. As a skilled carpenter, Bishop Franklin helped build the Prospect Street church in the 1950s and directed the construction of a three-story annex in 1978. A Bible scholar with a deep interest in eschatology, he wrote many articles on the subject for the Sunday bulletin as well as the PCAF national organization. Under his leadership, Mt. Zion reached its peak in the late 1970s with 100 members and nearly 150 regular Sunday School students. On November 27, 1987, Bishop Franklin died at the age of 66. He was best known for his knowledge of the book of Revelation and invaluable teachings on end-time prophecy.

Bishop James Oba Franklin was born November 1, 1921, in LaVergne, Tennessee. His marriage to Marian Perkins in 1946 produced 11 children: Stephen, Paul, Marshall, Jonathan, Teresa, David, Anita, Timothy, Gordon, Nancy, and Kathleen. He was baptized and filled with the Holy Ghost under the pastorate of Elder Robert Tobin and received his ministerial license through the Pentecostal Churches of the Apostolic Faith. An honorably discharged army veteran, he worked 24 years for the U.S. Postal Service as a mail carrier before devoting his life full-time to the ministry. Serving first as assistant pastor at then Christ Temple No. 2 (later Mt. Zion Apostolic Church), he was installed as pastor in 1967 and served until his death at age 66 in 1987. The Bishop James O. Franklin Chapel was named in his honor in 2005.

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