Meet the Pastor

Bishop Jethro C. James, Jr.

Bishop Jethro C. James, Jr., Senior Pastor of Paradise Baptist Church, was born in Paterson, New Jersey, the eldest of seven children to the late Jethro Sr. and Mary James. Most of his childhood years were spent in Powhatan, Virginia where he attended the public school system before returning to Paterson, NJ with his family. He continued his education in Paterson, graduating from John F. Kennedy High School and furthered his education at Bergen Community College and Rutgers University earning a certificate in Labor Studies.

He attended the Lamb’s School of Ministry in Brooklyn, New York and the Christian Bible Institute of New Jersey where he received a Doctor of Divinity Degree. In 1990, he was called to serve as pastor of The Paradise Baptist Church in Newark, New Jersey where he led the congregation in the building of a new edifice in 1993. Bishop James, who is often the “voice for the voiceless” has been instrumental in bringing needed services to the community-at-large.

Gifted to serve the church community as mentor and advisor to pastors and congregations, alike, he was consecrated to the office of Bishop on April 17, 2010. He was subsequently affirmed, on April 23, 2014, as a Bishop in the Full Gospel Baptist Church Fellowship International under the leadership of Bishop Paul S. Morton, International Presiding Bishop, Bishop Joseph A. Walker, International Presiding Bishop Elect, Bishop Kenneth L. Robinson, Northeast Central Regional Bishop and Bishop Rudy V. Carlton, New Jersey State Bishop. He currently serves as New Jersey State Director of Social Action.

Bishop James is President of the Newark/North Jersey Committee of Black Churchmen. He is also a member of several civic and fraternal organizations and is very active within the community. He serves as a chaplain for the Newark Police and New Jersey State Police Departments, Special Advisor to New Jersey State Attorney General on Minority Recruitment for State Police, member of the Faith Based Committee on Homeland Security and he has been appointed by the Supreme Court of the State of New Jersey to serve as a member of the Attorney Legal Ethics Committee. In addition, he serves as Chairperson of the Human Services Advisory Council of Essex County, Chairperson of the Appropriations Committee of FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency) along with a host of other affiliations. An eloquent informed speaker and New Jersey State Certified Social Worker, Bishop James is often sought after to address political and civic organizations nationwide.

In June 2006, after thirty-eight (38) years of dedicated service, Bishop James retired from Public Service Electric and Gas Company (PSE&G) in Newark, NJ. Prior to his retirement, Bishop James was an Urban Development Executive, responsible for the urban centers in the State of New Jersey.