OUR PASTORS 2015-02-08T05:25:13+00:00

Apostle Dr. Karen Annette Stanley Bethea

Apostle Dr. Karen Stanley Bethea is a Wife, Mother, Friend, Author, Teacher, Psalmist, Recording Artist, and Senior pastor of Set the Captives Free Outreach Center. She is known for the deliverance mantle on her life. Under her anointed teaching and preaching, many people have been set free from past addictions, pains, wounds, and negative lifestyles and have been brought into a spiritual and wholesome lifestyle. Dr. Bethea firmly believes that “she can do all things through Christ which strengthens her” Her eagle mentality is contagious to those around her.

Dr. Bethea gave her life to the Lord at the early age of 15 and began preaching at the tender age of 17. She is a graduate of Belmont Elementary, Calverton Middle School, Western High School, Coppin State College/Coppin State University, and Saint Mary’s Seminary/and University. She also earned her Doctorate through the Graduate Theological Foundation completing her coursework and defending her dissertation at Oxford University in Oxford, England.

She is a member of the Women Who Soar International, Female Clergy Support Group of Maryland, Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Incorporated-Baltimore Alumnae Chapter, the International/Association of Women Ministers, and the Foundation Board at Coppin State University.

She was initially ordained in June of 1988 and has taught and preached the Word of God extensively at Seminars, Conferences, Revivals, Workshops and Meetings throughout the United States, Africa, Bermuda, Canada, and England.

Perhaps her greatest challenge came in April 1997 when she was called to the pastorate. After three years of preparation, the church was planted and opened on April 9, 2000. Set the Captives Free Outreach Center, which has grown to over 2,000 members, is a center for healing and an incubator to discover and birth destinies. She is the author of Foundational Steps, an interactive Bible-based children’s church curriculum through which children ages 2-14 learn Biblical concepts in a systematic manner. Many churches are using it successfully in their children’s ministries. She has also written “Doors, (May 2011) and co-wrote “Testimonies From Overcomers” (Nov. 2010) and “Grow Wings” (Nov. 2012) with the Women Who Soar.

Dr. Bethea is under the spiritual covering of Bishop R. C. Hugh Nelson, D. Div. He is the pastor of the East Flatbush Church of God in Brooklyn, New York. She also serves as the apostolic covering and mentor for several churches and ministries in the United States and Bermuda.

In addition to being a minister, she is a wife and mother. She is married to Pastor Linwood E. Bethea, with whom she co-pastors. They have two beautiful children: Tiffany and L. Jamaal Bethea and two grandchildren Natalie and Jordan. They have been married for 30 plus years.



Pastor Linwood E. Bethea

Born September 9, 1954, Pastor Linwood E. Bethea is known for the “wisdom” that comes out of his mouth. When he talks, people listen. At the age of 13 he received Christ as his Savior at the New Shiloh Baptist Church in Baltimore, Maryland under the pastorate of Rev. Dr. Harold Carter, Sr. He then began to seek the Lord for wisdom. Those who know him will testify that he must have received it. In his quiet way he opens his mouth with wisdom and solid advice to many. Affectionately called “Bill Cosby,” Pastor Linwood is a family man who values family very highly.

He is a graduate of Frances Ellen Harper Elementary, Booker T. Washington Middle School, Frederick Douglas High School, and Coppin State College/ University

Pastor Linwood taught math at Woodlawn Middle School for one year and also ran a mentoring program there called, “The Gathering.” He encouraged, motivated, counseled, and offered activities for at risk males. He also taught in a GED program that enabled many to receive their high school equivalency certificates.

He is currently the director of the Mays-Woodson Christian Academy. The male dominated school currently has grades Pre-k through second. Higher grades will be added at a later date. Students there are excelling in reading, writing, mathematics, and wisdom. Wisdom is a unique part of the curriculum at Mays-Woodson. He is also the director of the men’s ministry, “The Nation of Men,” in which he is determined to take men from being males to men. He challenges men to be the priest of their homes and all that they should be as proclaimed by the Word of God. He and Pastor Karen also co-teach a life changing seminar entitled, “The Family Clinic” which has brought healing to many struggling families. It is their top selling CD series! Testimonies from the teachings keep pouring in. Pastor Linwood is a strong entrepreneur and a wise businessman. Pastor Linwood is also a member of the 100 Black Men of Maryland, an organization dedicated to mentoring and bettering the lives of young African American males.

Last but not least, he is a husband and father. He and Apostle Karen have two beautiful children: Tiffany, and L. Jamaal Bethea, and two grandchildren Natalie and Jordan. As of February 14, 2011, they have been married for 30 plus years.