Apostle Leroy H. Cannady
4th Presiding Bishop (1985-2015)

Just as an eagle stirs her nest, the Lord commissioned Leroy H. Cannady to leave the comforts of familiar surroundings in Franklinton, North Carolina and relocate to Baltimore, Maryland. On a cold day, the first Sunday in January in 1957, he left his family and friends and moved to “Charm City.” ​

During the months of September 1957, Leroy H. Cannady had grown tired of roaming from place to place and decided to open a church. The Lord laid it upon the heart and mind of this young and zealous man of God to start a mission at 1352 N Calhoun Street (at that time, his wife and children were still in North Carolina). However, there were two things that caused him to be uneasy about this building. First, the building was adjacent to a mortuary and secondly, it was in a basement. The building was in poor condition but Leroy H. Cannady began to make the renovations needed for worship. On the opening Sunday, he was joined by his brother Lincoln Cannady and his wife Meta along with his youngest brother Minister Ben Clement Cannady and his wife Rosalee. Brother Harrison Davis, Sr. and his wife Martha Bernice, also visited. The first scripture reading was I Corinthians 13. Unfortunately, without financial support, Bishop Cannady was unable to keep up with the monthly rent and as a result, a lock was placed on the door of the church. Since the chair had to be returned, he gave the landlady his last twenty dollars he had in his pocket and the chairs were removed. He felt downhearted. ​

As the Lord continued to work His will out for His servant, the doors to 1406 North Laurens Street were opened on the second Sunday in June 1958. Dismissing defeat from his mind, this time Bishop Cannady purchased 16 chairs for opening day! Now joined by his wife and children, he felt things were turning around and indeed they did. By 1961 (3 years later), this place of worship was too small. In 1962 Refuge relocated to 1442 North Carey Street, which had a seating capacity of 500. With only sixty members, Refuge remained at this location until they moved to 4301 Old York Road in 1970.


Apostle Leroy H. Cannady is referred to as an “Apostolic Father” by his peers. In a world that is constantly changing, Bishop Cannady holds fast to the Apostolic Doctrine. He has been a major soldier on the battlefield for many years. He was the Pastor of Refuge Way of the Cross Church of Christ, Inc. over for 50 years.

Among his many accomplishments are:
Began preaching the Gospel of Jesus Christ in 1949
Founder of the Refuge WOTCC in June 1958
Consecrated to the Office of Bishopricin August, 1970
Elevated to the Office of the Presiding Bishop in August, 1985
Radio Ministry from 1968 to 2010 on Heaven 600 Radio

Publisher of the following articles: Salvation, the Character and Nature of God God Head; Water Baptism; the Baptism of the Holy Ghost; One God

Give Me This Mountain – A Leap of Faith (Autobiography 2003)
Appointed Dean of the Apostolic Ministerial Alliance in 2010
Recipient of Apostolic World Christian Fellowship Torch
Founder of the Theodore Barber Scholarship Foundation
Published “Understanding the Infallible Word of God”
Elevated to the Office of Apostleship in August, 2016

Apostle Leroy H. Cannady was married for sixty-four (64) years to the late First Lady Virginia R. Cannady until her transition on April 29, 2008. He is the proud father of eight children (one has passed), twenty-five grandchildren, twenty-six great-grandchildren, and five great-great-grandchildren. Among all of his many accomplishments however, Apostle Leroy H. Cannady is often heard to say: “The greatest name you can call me is a servant. For I am a servant of God and to the people of God.”

 Apostle Leroy H. Cannady (Our Apostolic Father) transitioned on May 14, 2023 having completed over 64 years of ministry. 

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Executive Staff

Bishop Earley Dillard, Presiding Bishop
Bishop Roosevelt Fulton, Vice Presiding Bishop
Bishop Darnell Easton, 2nd Vice Presiding Bishop
Bishop Alphonzo D. Brooks, Presider Emeritus
Bishop Bennett B Gamble, Sr., General Secretary