Church of God in Christ Begins Annual Convention

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) - More than 50,000 members of the Church of
God in Christ are expected in Memphis, Tennessee, for the
Pentecostal denomination's annual meeting, which starts today.

The predominantly black religious group claims 6.5 million members worldwide.

Presiding Bishop Charles Blake, who attended the Democratic National Convention in August, has urged his church's delegates to vote absentee since they'll be in Memphis this Election Day.

In Denver, Blake told Democrats he had "humanitarian and theological differences with those who put forth abortion as an appropriate routine." But on his Web site, Blake says he finds it "personally and historically significant" that the Democratic nominee is an African-American.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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