Brief Biography of Pastor David Reynold Harewood
1957 to Present
Pastor David Reynold Harewood was born in St. Philip, Barbados in the West Indies in 1957. He is the son of an Evangelist, and although the Lord called His father home before David was born, he was raised to fear and reverence of the Lord.
Pastor Harewood received Christ as his Lord and Savior at the age of twelve, and became involved in the youth ministry at his local assembly. In 1974, young David moved to Montreal, Canada. He found a church home at Bibleway church, and continued to serve in the ministry under the leadership of Pastor Sinclair Knights and later under Pastor Horace Thompson.
In 1976 Pastor Harewood met the former Esther Hernandez, and they were married in November 1977. From this union was born four daughters and one son. Pastor Harewood was appointed to oversee the Missions Ministry; he was also lead to start a community Children’s church.
In 1999 Pastor Harewood was approached by the Pentecostal Assemblies of Canada to be the interim pastor at Bethel Life Pentecostal Church in the Eastern Townships of Quebec. Pastor Harewood agreed to go, even though the ministry was thriving and growing at Bible-way under his leadership, where he was now an associate pastor.
Each Sunday the Harewood family made the hour and a half trip from Montreal to South Bolton. After much prayer, Pastor Harewood accepted the Pastorate at what is now known as Bethel Life Centre full time, and he and his family relocated to the Eastern Townships. He was and still is the only Pastor of African-Caribbean descent in the Eastern Townships.
On June 26th, 2000, tragedy struck the Harewood household. While riding his bicycle on the road outside of their home, a speeding truck driver struck and killed Jonathan, the youngest of the Harewood children. Jonathan had told his father that he wanted to be like him and wanted his life to be for a purpose. His words were prophetic. In a community that was reluctant to embrace a black family, neighbors rallied behind the family in their time of loss and grief. Their friends from Bible-way and neighbors in the community, encouraged the family to press forward and Pastor Harewood continued to minister. To this day, a four-way traffic light shines as a beacon and a reminder of the sacrifices the Harewoods have made in order to serve in an area where no one wanted to minister. Then on June 16th2005, Esther Harewood, David’s wife of 28 years succumbed to bone cancer and was called home to be with the Lord. Even through this, the Pastor continued to preach the Gospel and reach out to the lost and back-slider.
In 2007, Pastor Harewood met the former Melveeta Grooms of Philadelphia, PA. After a brief courtship, the two were united in Holy Matrimony on January 11th2008, and now minister together as co-pastors at Bethel Life Centre.
On June 26, 2010 Pastor David R. Harewood was consecrated to the Holy Office of Bishop in the Lord's Church in the Abundant Life International Fellowship Inc., by the hands of Bishop W. Anthony Bright, Bishop Ivory Stafford, and Bishop Donald Ashlock.
In October 2010, being led of the Holy Spirit, Bishops David & Melveeta Harewood sought and were granted release from the Abundant Life International Fellowship, Inc. to initiate the Bethel Life International Fellowship, which was created to be a ministry where members of the clergy could fellowship, receive spiritual covering, leadership training, ministry and guidance. We have, by God’s grace, also developed a program whereby those called to ministry can study, be trained and credentialed by the Fellowship. Three training conferences/seminars are held annually, with the Holy Convocation being held every October.
The first annual Holy Convocation of BLIF was held October 2010 and at that time, Bishop David R. Harewood was installed as the Presiding Bishop of B.L.I.F. and Bishop Melveeta Harewood was installed as Assistant Presiding Bishop and General Secretary.