Biography: Reverend Renita Marie, M.DIV. graduated with honors from Saint Louis University, earned her Masters of Divinity from Payne Theological Seminary. An ordained Itinerant Elder in the African Methodist Episcopal Church, Rev. Renita is currently serving as the pastor of St. James AME Church in Cape Girardeau, Missouri. This is her sixteenth year in pastoral ministry. As an Adjunct Professor Rev Renita has taught Black Lives Matter: The Theology of Ferguson at Eden Theological Seminary (St. Louis) and Religions of the World at Southeast Missouri State University (Cape Girardeau).
Affiliations include the AME Ministerial Alliance, Cape Girardeau Ministerial Alliance, AME Women in Ministry, Covenant Project to Eradicate Mass Incarceration, St. Louis Area Ecumenical Social Justice Consortium, Black Methodist Alliance, Faith-Labor Alliance and the Cape County Democrats. She also serves as a Co-Chair for the Social Action Committee of the Missouri Conference (AME Church) and the Political Action Committee Chair for the Southeast Missouri chapter of the NAACP.
Pastor Renita received the Beloved Community Builder of the Year award by the City of St. Charles Ministerial Alliance, Humanitarian of the Year by the Disable Veterans of St. Charles for her leadership engaging congregations in homeless ministry and received recognition from the World Council of Methodist Churches, Jarvis Christian College and the African Methodist Episcopal Church (Black Lives Matter Award) for her ministry in Ferguson, MO during the height of civil unrest.
Pastor Renita is a semi-regular blogger and has published articles for the AME Christian Recorder, Huffington Post, CNN, St. Louis American and the Labor Tribune.
A sought-after speaker, she has ministered in numerous cities across eleven states. Pastor Renita’s book “Holy Moly! The Spirituality of Sexuality” has been the basis for numerous workshops on relationships, singleness and various women’s issues.
Pastor Renita is mother to two young adult children, Chrissi Nichole Jackson and Darren Ken (married to Danielle Elise), who are successful artists/entrepreneurs living in Tijuana and St. Louis, respectively. Little Sol Jackson has made her a new grandmother.
Convinced of the word in Jeremiah 1:5, “before you were formed in your mother’s womb, God knew you and had a plan for your life”, Pastor Renita firmly believes that all life is divine. This conviction compels her to be a relentless advocate for the right to an unencumbered life for all of God’s creation—especially those who are marginalized by religious and social systems.