Who is Bishop Noel Jones? Bishop Noel Jones is one of six pastors featured on “The Preachers of L.A.,” a new Oxygen reality TV series set to debut in the fall of 2013. Truly a self-made man, Bishop Jones was born poor in Jamaica and now runs the city of Refuge Church in Gardena, California, leading a flock that includes many celebrity worshipers. Bishop Jones isn’t the only success in his family; one of his six siblings is Grace Jones, the famous actress and musician.
“Who is Bishop Noel Jones?” is a question people won’t be asking much longer—at least if Oxygen is correct in thinking there’s a market for “Preachers of L.A.” and the show proves a hit. Bishop Jones was born Jan. 31, 1950, in Spanish Town, Jamaica. As per his official website, Bishop Jones suffered abuse as a child and was called into the ministry at 19. After attending St. Jago High School, he earned a bachelor’s degree in science in theology from Aenon Bible College.
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His first job as a pastor came in the mid-‘70s, when he signed on with Bethel Temple of Longview in Longview, Texas, and in 1994, he took over the Greater Bethany Community Church in South Central Los Angeles. He was so successful in growing the church that a new facility, “The City of Refuge,” was built in Gardena to accommodate the flock. There, he preaches five times a week to congregation totaling more than 17,000 worshipers, and he also writes about religious topics for Gospel Today Magazine.
The question on “Preachers of L.A.” might not be “Who is Bishop Noel Jones?” but rather “Who will be the next Bishop Noel Jones.” As Oxygen says in a press release, prefacing what will likely be his story arc, Jones is “headed towards retirement and looking for a successor who he can entrust his life’s work. But finding the right man is harder than it sounds.”