The Right Reverend
Michael Leon Mitchell
The 134th Elected and Consecrated Bishop of the African Methodist Episcopal Church
Bishop Michael Leon Mitchell
The hand of God has been evident on the life of Bishop Michael Leon Mitchell since he was a young child. Born August 4, 1960, in Perry, Florida to the late Reverend Arthur L. Mitchell, Sr. and the late Mrs. Mary L. Mitchell, Michael is the ninth of their fifteen children. Crippled at birth with a debilitating condition which doctors labeled as hopeless, he was blessed with a miracle from God when he began to walk on his own at the age of 7. He continued to grow stronger physically over the next ten years, as the Lord also nurtured and built up the spirit man inside of the child.
A life-long member of the African Methodist Episcopal Church, Michael was raised in Jacksonville, Florida, and is a product of Duval County Public Schools. While in high school, He answered the call to the ministry and preached his trial sermon at age 17, on August 28, 1977 at New Saint James AME Church. Determined to achieve God’s purpose for his life, Bishop Mitchell began his ministerial training and study under the African Methodist Episcopal Church and was ordained an Itinerant Deacon in 1979 and an Itinerant Elder in 1981. His first pastoral assignment came in 1985 at the A.M.E. Church of the Master (Jacksonville, FL). He also pastored Mount Zion (Arcadia, FL), Saint Luke (Tampa, FL), and Martin Memorial (Miami, FL).
In September 1992, Bishop Mitchell was chosen to succeed Bishop Robert V. Webster (retired) as pastor of Saint Stephen A.M.E. Church in Jacksonville, Florida. The return to his home town brought with him a fresh, vibrant anointing spirit that excited and ignited the congregation to a spiritual high. For 24 years, Bishop Mitchell taught and preached the Gospel with revelation knowledge and a sincere determination to build a people able to stand, steadfast and unmovable, on the promises of God. His concern for the personal spiritual growth of his members has always been a top priority. He increased the membership of Saint Stephen and expanded the weekly worship services, ministries and activities that blessed the lives of the church’s seniors, young adults and youth.
An anointed man of God whose concern for the people is not only spiritual, Bishop Mitchell is actively involved in the social, economic, and educational needs of the community. During his tenure as pastor of Saint Stephen, Bishop Mitchell implemented several improvement projects and purchased additional property, including a local funeral home which was transformed into an Outreach Center to assist the needy with food, clothing and basic essentials. In August, 1999, the Saint Stephen Child Care & Learning Center opened its door. The $1.7 million dollar project was a vision from God, implemented and nurtured by Pastor Mitchell, to be a catalyst for economic development in the inner-city neighborhood. (The mortgage for this project was paid off in full in August 2015). This 16,800 ft² state-of-the-art facility is recognized as an academically excellent learning center. He also established a six vehicle, revenue-generating Transportation Ministry for the church. These enhancements and growth are matched only by the spiritual enrichment of the membership and sparked a new attitude toward active Christian Stewardship and the up building of God’s Church.
Prior to becoming the 134th elected and consecrated Bishop in the AME Church, Bishop Mitchell served on the General Board of the African Methodist Episcopal Church (1996 through 2008) and served as the Chair of the Board of Examiners and Treasurer of the East Annual Conference of the Eleventh Episcopal District.
Bishop Mitchell graduated from Wilberforce University, Wilberforce, Ohio in 1982 and received a Master of Divinity Degree from Turner Theological Seminary at the Interdenominational Theological Center, Atlanta, Georgia in 1986. He received a Doctorate of Ministry Degree from United Theological Seminary in Dayton, Ohio in 2012.
Bishop Mitchell is married to Cordelia Daniel Mitchell and they have two daughters, Courtney and Channing.