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Bright Spot: Dr. Gina Stewart

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Dr. Gina Stewart is a nationally renowned pastor, author and speaker. In her two decades of ministry she's touched a lot of lives and been recognized for her dedication to spreading the Gospel.

Her most recent was her induction to the MLK Board of Preachers.

"When you consider anything attached to Dr. King it's a tremendous honor."

Preachers are who selected to this prestigious group are honored for living up to the ideals embodied by Dr. King.

Rev. Stewart grew up in south Memphis and was baptized in the church she now pastors. Years later, she was elected to be the first African American woman to lead an established Baptist congregation in Memphis.

"I know it was a God thing. Twenty-three years ago when I was elected it was still uncommon for women to preach let alone pastor."

She said her former pastor and many strong women in her church helped her appreciate her power.

"I was fortunate to be nurtured in a congregation in a church where I had spiritual leadership, Rev. Eddie l. Curry, who was the first pastor of this church - only two pastors in 51 years who believed God was not respector of persons."

Rev. Stewart has earned the respect of her congregation and Christians around the globe. She holds numerous divinity and theological degrees and admits it is sometimes challenging in her male dominated arena.

"There may be some battles that you have to fight but you're not just fighting those battles for yourselves. You're fighting for those little girls who are coming behind you."

Rev. Stewart is also on the national board of the NAACP.

The pastor said she's always preached about salvation as well as moral and social consciousness.

"How can you stand in the pulpit and not say something about the things you see that are out of alignment with God's will for human beings not just a certain group of people? The bible says for God so loved the world."