Reverend LaCretia Yvonne Bellamy

Reverend LaCretia Yvonne Bellamy was born December 20, 1974, in Columbia SC, to Rupert (Sharon) and Gwendolyn Bellamy.  She is the oldest of seven siblings, and the aunt of nine nieces and nephews. LaCretia holds a B.S. degree from Colorado State University (1998.) In 2005, she received a MBA degree from American Intercontinental University. She graduated Summa Cum Lade and in 2014 received her M.Div. with honors from The Interdenominational Theological Center, of Atlanta, Georgia.  As a fifteen- year educator and coach, LaCretia has received numerous accolades in Who’s Who Among Teachers, along with one state Title in Track and three County Championships in Basketball.

LaCretia is a licensed minister in the Baptist denomination, under the authority of Reverend, Doctor Kenneth L. Samuel, pastor of Victory Church UCC, of Stone Mountain, Georgia. In this ministry, LaCretia was a co-coordinator for Gateway Ministry, co-taught Teen Sunday School, and was a pulpit minister. Once she left Victory, she went to Rush Memorial, UCC where she started a Children’s Church Program, preached, taught, and led services. LaCretia has been an Army Chaplain Candidate since 2011, where she has counseled numerous soldiers, led suicide awareness classes, led chapel services, and performed memorial services for fallen soldiers.

LaCretia’s motivation for achieving high standards stemmed from these words her mother spoke to her at the age of thirteen, “Be better than me”, and with that LaCretia strived to be the best she could be. LaCretia has always had a passion for people, always looking for ways to assist those who were in need. Her passions and ministry throughout her life have been one of advocating for the least of these. As a pre-teen, she was always interested in teaching younger kids in her neighborhood. The ability to see the humanity in all people and to lend her skills to others is an innate characteristic

 A military family raised LaCretia, which taught her the importance of hard work, diversity, and collaboration. It was through her travel experiences that she learned the importance of context and the need for every person to be able to share their story. At the completion of her Bachelor’s degree, she enlisted in the United States Army where she worked as an Automated Logistics Specialist. Her four-year military career took her to Ft. Benning, Georgia, Yong San, Korea and finally Ft. Hood TX, where she completed her tour of duty. Entrusted with the highest positions of leadership at every Army school, LaCretia attended and is well decorated with awards for her accomplishments. While she enjoyed her service to her country, LaCretia decided not to re-enlist in the army due to the Don’t Ask Don’t Tell Policy, which she believed kept many soldiers from being their authentic selves for fear of a dishonorable discharge.

Today, LaCretia’s passion in ministry is advocacy work. Her favorite scripture is in Luke 4:18, which reads, “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. She has sent me to proclaim freedom to the captured and recovery of sight to the blind, to set the oppressed free”. Her entire ministry rest on these words both in the local church setting and as an Army Chaplain where she openly embraces the mandate to allow for the free exercise of religion among all people in a pluralistic environment. It is LaCretia’s desire that she be a representative of God, for the many men and women, soldiers and civilians who have lived and worked under oppressive laws for way too long. Her belief that her calling is to reach all people who may believe that God does not love them, based on race, gender, sexual orientation, religion, or character.