Our Pastor

Tokunbo Richard Adelekan, Ph.D., (Pastor-Teacher) “PAS” Adelekan Senior Pastor of The Tabernacle Baptist Church, Dayton, Ohio  Associate Professor of Theology and Ethics - Palmer Theological Seminary .
Born to an African (Yoruba) father Tunji Adelekan, M.D. and an African-American mother, Patricia Adelekan, Ph.D.; Rev. Dr. Tokunbo R. Adelekan’s life has been a pilgrimage of mind and spirit. A Visionary Shepherd – Agent of compassion, theological ethicist, biblical expositor, revivalist, evangelist, conference speaker,  congregational transformer, community developer, cultural critic, folklorist and dramatist, who works out of the Prophetic-Charismatic wing of the Afro-Baptist faith, - Dr. Adelekan is considered one of the most dynamic USAmerican Scholar-Preachers of his generation. Pastor Adelekan dares “things the rest of us do not see and dreams worlds that are beyond most of our imagining.” Featured by Ebony magazine as one of the “30 Leaders of the Future”, in his role as a transatlantic communicator, Dr. Adelekan has worked persistently to build cross-cultural and cross-denominational alliances between Christians in the United States, Europe, Africa and the African Diaspora. 

On March 4, 1989, Dr. Adelekan gave his trial sermon at a worship service in Samuel Archer Hall at Morehouse College. Presiding over this service was Rev. Clarence James, his long-time mentor. After graduating from Morehouse, Dr. Adelekan went on to do graduate work at the University of Ibadan in Nigeria, Andover Newton Theological School, Harvard University and Princeton University.  Dr. Adelekan was licensed on March 21, 1996 and ordained on October 19, 2000 at St. Paul  Community  Baptist  Church  in  Brooklyn,  NY  under  the  pastorate  of  Dr.  Johnny Ray Youngblood. Dr. Adelekan received his Ph.D. from Princeton Theological Seminary in June, 2002. 

Dr. Adelekan has written a play entitled Glad Surrender, numerous essays, papers, and articles. In 1998, he was elected to give the Annual Lecture for the Graduate Princeton Theological Seminary Graduate Forum. His reviews have appeared in the Koinonia (Fellowship) Forum, The Journal of Interdisciplinary Research, and the Dictionary of Mission Theology. Dr. Adelekan’s book entitled, “African Wisdom”, was released in 2004 by Judson Press. His most recent work “A Charge To Keep”, published in October 2014, by the Progressive National Baptist Convention and MMGI Books, is widely recognized as a major primer on the central role of the local church in urban renewal during the age of President Obama. Dr. Adelekan is currently working on a monograph entitled, “For Our Transgressions: An Exploration of the Role of Compassion in Healing the U.S. Social Order”.

As an urban missiologist, Dr. Adelekan was an early pioneer of the modern Hip-Hop Scholar -Activist-Preacher phenomenon and introduced a number of culturally relevant innovations into     practical missiology. Under his servant-leadership, Philadelphia’s Mount Olivet Tabernacle Baptist Church (MOTBC) quickly became a model for growing relevant urban churches. The “Miracle on 42nd Street” embraces multiple intelligences and giftings and has been blessed with the incorporation of many new singles and families. The Ministries of Mercy at the church include: The Vineyard Minis- try, The Ep’aphras Ministry, The ACTS Ministry, The Philippians Ministry, The MOTBC School of the Prophets, The Teachable Spirit Youth Ministry and The MOTBC Evangelism Ministry. 

Currently, Dr. Adelekan serves as the Senior Pastor of Dayton’s Tabernacle Baptist Church – one of the fastest growing churches in Southern Ohio. His vigorous outreach efforts include the institutionalization of the PBS (Prayer Bible Stewardship) Initiative, the Gideonites, The Jericho Road Project, Grace Healing Services, YAM Bible Alive Program, the VISA (Vision, Integrity, Structure, Accountability) Church Reformation Program and the Emmaus Institute of Non- violence. These ministries have helped to reinvigorate the congregation’s regional and national witness. Dr. Adelekan is a leading figure in bridging the worlds of the academe, pop culture and the church. This allows him to work with Christians of different outlooks in Africa, the Caribbean, Europe and North America. Dr. Adelekan is a pioneer advocate of contextualizing Christianity into post-modern sensibilities. In this role of prophetic “visioneering”, he helps to revive and recast progressive partnerships between Baptists of different hues and heritages. A key passion for Dr. Adelekan’s ministry is leadership development, particularly the formation of the Joshua and Naomi generation leaders, to serve the Kingdom in the 21st Century. To that end, he has employed motivational and mentoring strategies that influence leaders from a broad and diverse range of generations to maximize their God– given gifts in service of the “Reign of God.” Tabernacle Baptist Church has experienced an infusion of “agents of grace”, anointed servant leaders who embrace the call of active, compassionate, Spirit- filled participation in the vital “drama” of congregational and community renewal. In all of these things, the twin engines that propel Dr. Adelekan’s ministry and personal life are “The Ministry of the Word and the Ministry of Prayer” (Acts 6:1-4, 7-9; John 17; Philippians 1:9-11; Colossians 1:9-11; I John 5:14-15; Ephesians 6:19; Psalm 103:20; Jeremiah 1:9, 12). 

Dr. Adelekan “ PAS ” Adelekan and his wife, the gracious and lovely, Tahira Adelekan (M.D.) are the proud parents of three wonderful children.


REV. Tokunbo Adelekan,
Ph.D., Senior Pastor

& First Lady Tahira Adelekan, M.D.


380 South Broadway Street

Dayton, Ohio 45402