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James Leftdwrige is the son of the late Scottie and Pauline Ford Leftdwrige. He was born May 24, 1933 in Wayne County, fourth of seven children. He attended Vails Elementary School near Pikeville and Bunn School near Nahunta. He graduated from Pikeville Training School in 1953, after graduation he worked as a short-order cook at Green Parrot Cafe in Goldsboro, NC before being inducted into the US Army, where he served for 6 years. He was honorably discharged in May 1960, and settled in East Orange, NJ where he reconnected with a former classmate, L. N. Forbes. He was invited to church by Forbes and later united with his church.

He was the first Deacon and first preacher in Faith Temple #1. He preached his initial sermon in 1960 and served as assistant pastor of Faith Temple #1 and #2. IN 1967, he was called to pastor at Mincey Chapel, in 1969 he was called to Union Star and New Daniel Chapel. In 1973, he was called to Washington Branch (Mother church of the Conference), he served 3 churches until 1988 when he became Bishop. He had to give one up. He has served as Vice-President of the Southern District Union for 5 years and President for 7 years.

Bishop attended Johnston Community College and successfully completed courses in the New and Old Testaments, and attended Wayne Community College with emphasis on Business Administration, and received an Associate Degree in Automotive Body. On October 31, 1988 he received an Honorary Doctor of Divinity Degree from United Christian College and became 2nd Vice-Bishop. On May 8, 1998 he received a Bachelor of Theology Degree. Bishop Leftdwrige resides in Selma, NC. He is married to the former Mary Horton and they have one daughter, Crystal Leftdwrige, grandson, Bryce and a Granddog, Diva.