2016 • Oprah Winfrey Network
1.8K reviews
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Season 1 episodes (13)

1 A Time to Heal
"In the season premiere, directed by executive producer Clement Virgo (“The Book of Negroes”), Grace and her teenage daughter Sophia (Desiree Ross, “Falling Skies”) are warmly welcomed home by Grace’s father, Bishop Greenleaf. Sparked by Grace’s return to Memphis, tensions quickly rise. At a family dinner in the Greenleaf mansion, Grace’s mother is cold and hostile. Her sister-in-law Kerissa (Kim Hawthorne, “Rake”) questions her about her faith and sister Charity (Deborah Joy Winans, “Whitney”) erupts with jealousy at the suggestion that Grace might start preaching at Calvary. Later, Grace’s Aunt Mavis (Oprah Winfrey, “Selma”) discusses with her the circumstances of Faith’s death and reveals some shocking information about Grace’s Uncle “Mac” (Gregory Alan Williams, “Terminator Genisys”). Mavis is still estranged from the Greenleaf family and it becomes evident that she intends to use Grace to sow the seeds of its destruction."
2 The Baptism
Grace moves back to Memphis under false pretenses in order to pursue the man she holds responsible for her sister’s death but finds the realities of working in her family’s church again harder to handle than she expected.
3 We Shall See Him as He Is
Grace finds herself on an uncomfortable date. Jacob and Kerissa see their marriage for what it has become. Meanwhile, Senator Banks’ turns up the heat in his inquiry into the church’s finances.
4 Behind Closed Doors
The mayor calls in a favor, asking Calvary to take a controversial stance and publicly support David Nelson, a cop who shot and killed an unarmed teenager, leaving the Bishop in a bind that could potentially split the church. Grace is blackmailed by someone with upsetting information about Faith's past while Sophia defies her mother's order and sneaks out to attend a protest in honor of Kenny Collins, David Nelson's victim. Jacob reluctantly attends couple's counseling and finds the therapy useful, though not in the way Kerissa had hoped. Charity, despite Kevin's warnings, can't keep her secret.
5 Meaningful Survival
When members of the church reach out for prayers for their terminally ill child, Grace (Merle Dandridge, "The Night Shift") and the Bishop (Keith David, "Community") find themselves with opposing views on the value of hope and the responsibilities of a pastor. Lady Mae (Lynn Whitfield, "The Josephine Baker Story") devises a plan to mend fences between the Bishop and Deacon Sykes (Jen Harper, "Kill the Messenger") while Kerissa (Kim Hawthorne, "Rake"), pushed to her limit with Jacob's (Lamman Rucker, "Meet the Browns") infidelities, takes explosive action without a plan -- with unintended consequences for both she and Jacob's careers. Kevin (Tye White, "The People v. OJ Simpson: American Crime Story") takes another step toward exploring his sexuality in the face of news about Charity's (Deborah Joy Winans, "Whitney") pregnancy.
6 Good Morning, Calvary
The Bishop -- despite protestations from both Grace and Lady Mae -- appoints Grace to preach on Sunday in his absence, forcing Grace to deal with her conflicted feelings about returning to the pulpit and forcing Lady Mae to admit that the Bishop blames her for Faith's death. Jacob's plans to score a television deal to broadcast Calvary services in an attempt to get reinstated take an unexpected turn when the television executive takes a liking to Kerissa. Meanwhile, Kevin's flippant advice to Charity on how to hire a new music director backfires, bringing up Kevin's deep-seated issues.
7 One Train May Hide Another
On the day he's set to receive the "Memphis Man of the Year" award, Mac juggles a variety of tasks for the Greenleaf clan both in his capacity as Chief Council and family member, including advising Charity about the new music director she wants to hire and assisting Jacob with the details of his television pitch to the Bishop. But between mounting paranoia about Grace's designs to bring him to justice, complications in the IRS's audit of the church, and the unwanted appearance of his and Lady Mae's father, Mac is set on a collision course that puts him at odds with his allies within Calvary.
8 The Whole Book
Amidst the firestorm of public outcry when a Grand Jury declines to press charges against Officer David Nelson, Grace reaches out to Nelson while also working closely with Noah on a new plan to find evidence against Mac. Noah evades Lady Mae's questions about what Grace is up to, making her suspicious of Grace and Noah's re-budding intimacy. Jacob presents his broadcast plan to the Bishop, leading Lady Mae to encourage the Bishop to reveal a secret he's been keeping from the family -- and the congregation -- while the Bishop is busy trying to handle Bassie Skanks, who he learns might have much deeper, much more personal reasons for wanting to destroy Calvary.
9 The Broken Road
In the aftermath of David Nelson being shot on church grounds, a debate erupts about the safety of having armed security guards at Calvary. Charity's mounting suspicions about Kevin, helped along by advice from Carlton, lead her to confront him. Meanwhile, it's the eve of Noah and Isabel's wedding and Grace -- feeling guilty about having slept with Noah -- agrees to wait before using the evidence she has to put Mac away so as not to ruin their day. But when Grace learns Mac is planning on leaving the country she's forced to take action, setting off a chain of events with potentially catastrophic consequences.
10 March to the Sea
Mac's attempt at blackmailing the Bishop into not turning him in is thwarted when Grace -- despite her father's pleas -- calls the police. This puts Grace and the Bishop at odds as the Bishop is arrested for shooting Mac and Grace has to handle the appearance of Sophia's father Ray, who is concerned about his daughter's safety at Greenleaf. Noah has to deal with the fallout from the wedding being called off, making him question what he really wants. Jacob tries to connect with Zora while Charity, fed up with being disrespected by everyone, finally speaks up.
11 Men Like Trees Walking
The church -- beset on all sides by scandal -- is hemorrhaging money and members, despite the best efforts of the Bishop. Grace learns that Ray is taking her to court for custody of Sophia, while her father still won't speak to her. Jacob's offers to help at Calvary are declined, sending him to Triumph Church and the Bishop's rival Bassie Skanks. Charity forms an idea to raise money for the church while Kevin -- who is still sleeping on the couch -- gets closer to Adrian. Mac, in jail, has questions about the existence of hell.
12 Veni, Vidi, Vici
Tithes are down at Calvary, and Deacon Sykes negotiates with Lady Mae that Grace will preach for the summer in exchange for holding Women's Day at the Peabody. In a surprise ruling, Ray is granted custody of Sophia for the summer, after which, the old custody agreement is restored, leaving Grace with a decision about whether to stay in Memphis or return to Phoenix to be with Sophia. Jacob meets with Basie Skanks about a new job at Triumph, and Basie seeks the Bishop's blessing to hire him, which Bishop gives. Adrian and Kevin go for a lunch date, but when the conversation moves toward their feelings for each other, Kevin insists to Adrian he's not gay, and Adrian leaves, angry. Mavis advises Grace to leave Memphis and tells her the church will corrupt her like it corrupted her parents. Jacob informs Lady Mae he's moving out and taking the job at Triumph, but Lady Mae invites him to continue living at Greenleaf, and he accepts. In an attempt to make things right in his marriage, Kevin confesses to Charity that he has feelings about men, but this revelation backfires and causes the twins to go into distress. Charity is rushed to the hospital, and the doctor orders that she remain on bed rest for the remainder of her pregnancy. Charity's scare causes Kerissa to mourn for the baby she lost, Serena Rose, and she turns to Jacob for comfort. Grace prepares a motion to appeal the judge's ruling, but Sophia is angry and tells her not to do it. Lady Mae tells Bishop that she is going to preach for the summer instead of Grace unless Bishop will tell her what Mac has on Bishop. Bishop tells her nothing and agrees to inform Deacon Sykes that Lady Mae will be preaching this summer.
13 What Are You Doing Here?
The Bishop visits Mac, and Mac asks him to be a character witness at his hearing, threating that he won't have a way to keep paying Henry hush money from jail. The Bishop refuses. Basie Skanks drives Jacob to a plot of land across from Calvary where he intends to build a $40 million community center for Triumph there and says the Lord is calling Jacob to be the face of the organization. Henry comes to Calvary looking for Lady Mae. Noah intercepts him, and Grace learns that Henry is terminally ill. She asks Kevin to help find Henry somewhere to live, and Kevin agrees. Kerissa learns the schools TCAP scores increased suspiciously and Excellence's accreditation will not be renewed until after the board launches an inquiry into suspected cheating in Isabel's class. Lady Mae gives a sermon about "The Virtuous Woman" and the audience misinterprets it as her endorsement of Grace as the interim preacher at Calvary. Grace tells the Bishop she wants to go back to Phoenix with Sophia, but Bishop reveals to her he has Parkinsons and needs her to preach for the summer. Grace agrees. At church, Bishop tells Jacob the Lord's will is for him to be his eyes and ears at Basie's new community center. Grace preaches, asking for a moment of silence for all the victims of sexual abuse in the church. At Greenleaf, Kevin asks Charity to look into a gay conversion therapy, but Charity tells Kevin she needs to take some space and that he should move out for the time being. Grace takes Henry to a Hospice that the church has agreed to pay for. He mourns that his daughters won't come see him before he dies, and he reveals that Mac has been giving him hush money all this time about a church that was intentionally burned down many years ago. Ray arrives at Greenleaf to take Sophia away for the summer. Two police cars arrive at Greenleaf to arrest the Bishop and release Mac on probation.

About this show

“Greenleaf” centers on the journey of estranged daughter and disillusioned preacher Grace Greenleaf (Merle Dandridge) who has returned home after 20 years on the occasion of the mysterious death of her sister, Faith. As she reenters the world of Calvary Fellowship World Ministries, the Memphis megachurch run by her powerful parents Bishop James Greenleaf (Keith David) and Lady Mae Greenleaf (Lynn Whitfield) ,it becomes evident that things are not as virtuous as they seem and that the family’s outward display of faith hides sin and misdeeds.
1.8K reviews
Phyllis Lovelace
September 2, 2016
This show never disappoint me. It is intriguing. The everyday issues of life and church are addressed. Things that most people are not willing to talk about, those many family and congregational secrets. I also love the way the show allow us to see the issues that we are seeing in our society today, ie police brutality, molestation, adultery, family secrets, black lives matter, regrets, past sins, generational curses, greed, social status quo. I could go on and on.Thank you to the writers .
358 people found this review helpful
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M. Terrie Stewart
May 9, 2017
Greenleaf provides its audience to see preachers and christians as people with every day struggles (sinners save by grace) who has to account and reconcile their daily living with the man above.. I appreciate the fact, that it allows us to see christians struggling with variend life concerns and hippocracy that has permeated over the years in black churches (i.,e., preachers sleeping with members of their congregation, non acceptance of people who has alternative life styles , rape, etc., etc.,).
26 people found this review helpful
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Gina Adamchick
August 20, 2016
I'm really in love with this show. As a Christian, I have a hard time finding shows that eliminates a conviction after watching. I mainly enjoy it because it shows the 1st family in leadership position yet dealing with the struggles of life. It addresses lots of family drama, relatable to every age group, and most position in the church , it's modern, and from a biblical prospective. Love that it address sexual immorality from several positions in the church! Love this show!
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