With a solid foundation established and passion for Christ, well-known local church figure celebrated a couple of milestones: his 75th birthday and 50th wedding anniversary.

Local pastors, city officials, church members, family and friends all gathered at the historic Sharon Baptist Church on Aug. 3, to help Rev. Dr. A.C.D. Vaughn observe 75 years of life, much of it as a living legend,.

“After so many years, I thought I owed it to my wife,” Dr. Vaughn told the AFRO of the party he planned himself.

Dr. Vaughn has been married to Dr. Lillian Purnell Bowser for 50 years, a move he said ,“was the best thing” he could have done. Their union produced three offspring, Rev. Dr. Lynette Vaughan, Corrogan and Cassandra.

During the three-hour celebration, which was presided over by Bishop Walter P. Thomas of New Psalmist Baptist Church, elected officials and pastors honored a man that has had 56 faithful years of ministry.

“Because of my parents involvement in the community, its good to see people come out and appreciate them,” Corrogan Vaughn told the AFRO.

City Council President Jack Young, former NAACP president Kweisi Mfume, Frank M. Conaway and the Rev. Jamal Bryant all shared words that represented a man dedicated to his calling.

“I felt blessed that the Lord has given me many ministries and blessings,” Rev. Vaughn told the AFRO.

The invitation to the birthday/wedding celebration was extended to the entire congregation, which Dr. Vaughn said he personally wanted, “everyone to be there.” He said during each worship service he personally extended the invitation and called his family and friends.

People traveled all the way from Georgia, South Carolina and Virginia to attend. Nearly 500 guests enjoyed an array of fine fare, gourmet desserts and finger food in the church banquet hall, which was decked out in gold, white and blue. Centered at each table were huge bouquet of floral arrangements. No live band on hand, but many people serenaded Dr. Vaughn with soulful voices.

“Everyone there came to celebrate a living legend,” said Corrogan. “To see the overwhelming overflow was amazing.”

Corrogan said people showered Rev. Vaughn with gifts, love, their presence and well wishes.

But the main gift was the gift the 75-year-old minister presented to his wife h three months ago. “I gave her what she wanted, a brand new SUV.”

As the evening concluded, Bishop Thomas recommitted the union of the couple. “Twenty-five years ago, Bishop Thomas recommitted my wife and I so, he did it again.”

Following the recommitment passage, his godson, Harold Carter Jr., closed with a family prayer.

As the fourth pastor to head the church, Dr. Vaughn has led the congregation at Sharon Baptist Church for 27 years. In 2010, he was named “Living Legend” by the Reginald F. Lewis Museum and is known for his uncanny ability to connect with people.

“I am a server not a celebrity. My calling was to serve the people of God.”


Blair Adams

AFRO Staff Writer