Above all else, West Angeles is about its members.
Bishop Blake’s extended family is a massive one, and each weekend, thousands join Bishop in the pews of WestA.
And with the WestA HUMANKIND series, we aspire to give those same family members a voice.
Each weekend, westa.org will gather pictures and commentary from WestA members and WestA visitors, answering questions regarding their experience at West Angeles, what Bishop’s message meant to them, what has caused them to stay with WestA over the years, and other topics.
Check back each week to see what the people of WestA are talking about and what they’re going through, as they share their story with westa.org.
Clarence Anthony and family, visiting from West Palm Beach, Florida
“We’re here on a conference meeting but we took some time for ourselves. We came to West Angeles because we’ve heard so many great things about Bishop Blake. It’s been a blessed morning. And it was a wonderful experience. The word was delivered in such a divine way and it inspired us. It’s been all of what we thought it would be.”
Lundon Knighten, a year-long member come September
What made you stick for a year?
“I go off the spirit and how the Lord moves my spirit, and this church, everyone in it is filled with love and the Holy Ghost. My spirit told me where to go and where to stay, and here I am.”
Bukola Salako, from Nigeria, a member of West A for two years family has been here since 1998, came in 2012
“My family came to America in 1998. I came in 2012, and when I joined my family, we came to this church.”
What are the differences between church in Nigeria and West Angeles?
“There’s not much except for the difference in spiritual inclination. Back home in Nigeria, we cover our heads. They don’t do that here. And there are some things they allow here which we don’t allow, like broken homes. We see it as something that should not even be mentioned among Christiandom. But the praise and worship, and the message are the same thing.”
How has the transition between church styles been for you?
“By the grace of God, as a child of God, you can get acclimated to any situation.”
Michelle Reynolds, a member of West Angeles for 25 years
What has made you stick with West A for over two decades?
“Bishop Blake’s teachings. The Sunday School department. I was in choir for 13 years. This is home. I raised all of my kids here.”
Thomas Motter, from Germany, a first-time visitor
“I watch the online service regularly. This is my first time coming.”
What brought you here today?
“I’m visiting LA and it was meaningful for me to be here and see this live. It was a very special experience.”
How did you hear about West Angeles in Germany?
“Through my friend, Penny Ford. She lives in Germany and she is a singer. And she brought it to my attention. Thanks, Penny.”
Edmund Chung, from Hong Kong, a first-time visitor (second from right)
“We come from Hong Kong. We’re just visiting LA. One of our friends is a pastor in LA and we asked him where we should go and he introduced this church to us.”
How was your experience?
“It was very special to me, to meet so many friends. Most of you are black and we are Asian, so we haven’t seen so many black Christians before. It was really amazing.”
Vick Balakrishman, from Malaysia, a first-time visitor (far left)
“I know a pastor from Hong Kong that has a Chinese church in LA. He told us to come here. The way they worship here and the different expression, it’s amazing. I’m Indian and we have a similar way of expression, but at this church, it’s over the bar.”
Earl Jordan, a member of West A since 1989
What made you stick with West A?
“I was moved here from Cleveland for the company I was working for at the time and I found West Angeles by accident. I had never been to LA and I went out to search for another church and got lost. By the time I realized it was time to be in church, I looked up and there was West Angeles. I’ve never been anywhere since. This is home.”
Pamelia Bailey, member of West Angeles
“When I come here I feel the spirit. I feel it so high. I tell everybody about this church everywhere I go. I don’t care if I’m late, I gotta get my word. I come here to have my one-on-one with my man Jesus Christ.”
Lance Evans and family, members of West Angeles
“My wife has been a member of West Angeles. We actually met here, right in the hall when service let out. I said a prayer when I moved down here to LA from the bay area. I said, ‘God, bless me with a woman that can speak back into my life, that can feed my fire, and me not just teaching and trying to preach to her all the time.’ And God granted my prayers the day I stepped in here.”