Category Archives: Homegoing of a Saint

Homegoing of a Saint – Dr. W.G. Harvey

IMG9589895323095561PADUCAH, KENTUCKY – Longtime pastor, city commissioner and civil rights leader, the Rev. Dr. W.G. Harvey, has gone home to be with the Lord. He was 88 years old.

Dr. Harvey founded the New Greater Love Missionary Baptist Church and pastored previously the Harrison Street Missionary Baptist Church. He served New Greater Love until his retirement and was honored as the Pastor Emeritus by the congregation.

He held a lifetime membership of the NAACP and was the first African-American elected as City Commissioner.

The home going services have been announced by the family as follows:

Services will be held on Monday, July 14, 2014:

1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. – Family Viewing

3:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. – Public Viewing

5:00 p.m. – Masonic Rites

7:00 p.m. – Homegoing Service
New Greater Love Missionary Baptist Church
1249 North 12th Street
Paducah, Kentucky
Rev. LaRita Horton, Pastor

The preferred hotel is:
The Fairfield Inn and Suites
3950 Coleman Crossing Road
Paducah, Kentucky 42001
(270) 442-1700

To fax condolences to the family (via Pettus-Rowland Funeral Home) please send them to (270) 442-0272.

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Homegoing of a Saint – Bishop Harold Ivory Williams, Raleigh, NC

RALEIGH, NC – Bishop Harold Ivory Williams went home to be with the Lord on July 4, 2014.  His services have been announced by the Presiding Bishop, Archbishop Alfred A. Owens, Jr. of the Mount Calvary Holy Church of America as follows:

Please keep his wife, Pastor Shirley Caesar-Williams and the Mt. Calvary Raleigh family in your prayers. All services will be held at Mt. Calvary Holy Church Word of Faith, 3100 Sanderford Road, Raleigh, North Carolina 27510, 919.832.1800.  The arrangements are as follows:

Friday, July 11, 2013

Bishop Williams will lie in state from 12:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.

Local/State Celebration of Life
7:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m.
(Civic Attire)

Saturday, July 12, 2013

Viewing – 9:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m.

National Homegoing Celebration – 11:00 a.m.
(Choir Dress – Official MCHCA Robes)

This is Bishop Williams’ biography from the Church Web Site:

Bishop Harold I. Williams, Sr., is the Bishop Emeritus of the Mt Calvary Holy Churches of America. Bishop Williams pastured the Winston-Salem MCHCA church for more than 30 years, while serving as Senior Bishop Prelate of the Mt Calvary Holy Churches of America organization. As a disciple of Bishop Brumfield Johnson, Bishop Williams gleaned the essence of Johnson’s heart-similar to Elijah and Elisha. And as adamantly as Elisha refused to leave Elijah, Bishop Williams was faithful to Bishop Johnson until Bishop Johnson’s death on February 15, 1972. And just as with Elijah and Elisha, when Elisha sought a double portion of God’s anointing of his spiritual mentor, Bishop Williams embraced the torch of MCHCA and exponentially grew the church in which Bishop Brumfield Johnson had begun.


Bishop Williams founded a MCHCA church in Baltimore, Maryland, while he pastured a MCHCA church in Washington, D.C. as well as the original congregation he inherited from Bishop Johnson in Winston-Salem, NC. By today’s vernacular, one could say that Bishop Williams pastured “one church in three locations”. And he did all of that while holding down his secular job of tuning pianos for the now-defunct Hecht Company. Bishop Williams was as tenacious as his predecessor in seeking the advancement of God’s Kingdom through the MCHCA organization. By God’s leading, Bishop Williams appointed Hansel H. Henry to pastor the MCHCA in Baltimore and then merged with the then-pastor Alfred A Owens, Jr’s church; Christ Is The Answer Chapel with the MCHCA Washington, D.C., church. That is when the Greater Mt. Calvary Holy Church (GMCHC) was born. Bishop Williams’s relationship with these two men could continue to grow and he eventually installed them as 1st and 2nd Vice Bishops respectively- an idea first used by Bishop Brumfield Johnson. Bishop Williams was invited to speak overseas and his protégés were too. As the organization grew with its influx of new churches in search of a shepherd, Bishop Williams divided the global map into territories. Not only did MCHCA have presences in North America, but also its international representation grew in the countries of Barbados, India, Trinidad& Tobago, England and the Bahamas. Bishop Williams filled the need for more oversight of the growing church be elevating Bishops and creating District Overseer positions. Eventually, Bishop Williams named Overseer Daniel Russell as Senior Pastor over his beloved Winston-Salem church, and joined his beloved wife, Pastor Shirley Ann Caesar-Williams as Co-Pastor of the Mt Calvary Word of Faith Church, in Raleigh, NC.


Bishop Williams during breakfast one day in August 2008, deemed it time to pass the Baton of leadership of the MCHCA to his successor and the third Senior Bishop in the Mt Calvary Holy Churches of America organization to now Senior Bishop Alfred A. Owens, Jr.


Bishop Harold I. Williams, Sr., a true man of God, a great leader, a remarkable teacher, a wonderful husband, a devoted dad, and a black history phenom.

Homegoing of a Saint: Rev. William Shackleford, Martinsville, Virginia

The Rev. William Shackleford dies at 66
Was pastor of St. Paul High Street for 27 years, active in area
Click to Enlarge
The Rev. William and Rebecca Shackleford are pictured in February 2013 at a reception honoring their service in the local area before moving to Hampton, where their children live.

Thursday, June 19, 2014

By HOLLY KOZELSKY – Bulletin Staff Writer

The Rev. William Shackleford, former pastor of St. Paul High Street Baptist Church in Martinsville and former Martinsville School Board member, died Wednesday.


Shackleford was the pastor of St. Paul High Street Baptist Church for 27 years before he and his wife, Rebecca, moved to Hampton in February 2013. Their two children and two grandchildren live there. 

William Shackleford, 66, had lung cancer for two years, his wife said. That was the reason he retired from St. Paul High Street, she added. 

He died at home, where he had been under hospice care for a week and a half, she said. 

Shackleford was active in this area. He was the Martinsville School Board’s first black chairman. He was a member of the Boys and Girls Clubs of the Blue Ridge Board and was chairman of its Planning and Programs subcommittee. He was an Advisory Council member of the Good News Jail and Prison Ministries and a past president and current chairman of the board of the Baptist Sunday School and B.T.U. (Baptist Training Union) Congress of Virginia, where he was the president and chairman of the board. He also was past president of the Virginia One Church One Child Minority Adoption Program. 

Rebecca Shackleford said she and her husband had been living with their son while waiting for their house in Martinsville to sell. Her husband had been writing a third book. 

“He hadn’t finished it,” she said. “He had jotted down an outline.” The inspirational book was about “life preparation,” she said, adding that her children may finish the book. 

His first two books are “The Sin That Will Keep Many People Out of Heaven” and “Replacing the Fallen Angels.” 

The Rev. Thurman Echols of Moral Hill Missionary Baptist Church in Axton said Shackleford was “a dear friend and colleague of mine.” Their children grew up together, and the two men “worked in the community together. Our churches fellowshipped together,” he added. 

Shackleford also “was involved with a number of organizations that made an impact on persons who did not even go to church,” such as the school board and Grace Network, Echols said. 

“He made a great impact on the community with his involvement with the children,” Echols said, referring to Shackleford’s work with summer enrichment programs. 

Both men served together on a number of boards. Shackleford was secretary of the Virginia Baptist State Convention, of which Echols is the president. The two attended national Baptist conventions together as well, Echols said. Shackleford also was part of the National Baptist Convention with Foreign Missions, the National Baptists and the Hampton Ministers Conference. Each has been a moderator of the Smith River Missionary Baptist Association. 

Echols said he last saw Shackleford last month at a convention in Williamsburg. 

Zeb Talley, the principal of Patrick Henry Elementary School, said Shackleford was “very much an advocate” for children. 

As a member of the school board, Shackleford “was very concerned about the quality of the teachers selected,” Talley said. 

“He did a lot of things out of (the church) for kids,” Talley added. He welcomed students who were in trouble at school to spend time at the church doing school work. “You don’t get that often. … His church had open arms to a lot of those kids, and for me that’s the ultimate: Giving to some kids who can’t necessarily give back right now.” 

Rebecca Shackleford was “really a good partner. She worked right alongside of him,” Talley added. 

Talley and Shackleford often served together on planning committees for Martin Luther King Jr. celebrations, which were held regularly at St. Paul High Street, Talley added. 

Deacon Harold Campbell said he had known Shackleford since he (Campbell) joined the church in 1989. He was shocked to hear of the former pastor’s death because “he’s always been a rock. Everybody else gets sick, but Rev. Shackleford was always the healthy one.” 

Campbell said he met Shackleford shortly after Campbell lost a son. “He really saved me. I was having a hard time” dealing with the loss, he said. 

There was no limit to the lengths Shackleford would go to for a church member, Campbell said. “If he had a member who was sick, it didn’t matter where they were, he would go visit him.” He went on a few trips with Shackleford to cities as distant as Columbus, Ohio, and Philadelphia to visit former members who had moved away and gotten sick. 

“You could call him any time, day or night, and he was right there on the spot,” Campbell added. 

Shackleford also was an excellent teacher, he said. “He could teach a class, and when you left that class you had a full understanding of everything he was talking about,” Campbell said.

Homegoing of a Saint: Rev. M.A. Byrd, Roselle, New Jersey

ROSELLE, NJ – The Borough of Roselle mourns the loss of another great individual in our community, Rev. M.A.Byrd. Pastor of the Bethlehem Missionary Baptist Church located at 1002 Rivington Street, in Roselle.

“When you talk about a leader that impacted a community you think of Rev M. A. Byrd. When you think of a person who remained a role model for all of us, you think of Rev. M. A. Byrd. When you think of a Pastor who guided you through many troubled times, good times and just any time, you think of Rev. M. A. Byrd. Words cannot express how dedicated this man was to my life but to the overall community of Roselle. He made me who I am today and I thank you Rev. M. A. Byrd. I love you! Rest in peace! You will always be my solid rock! Rest easy my leader! I will miss you until we meet again. Let’s all continue to prayer for First Lady Gloria Byrd, the Byrd Family and the Bethlehem Baptist Church family!” (by Mayor Jamel C. Holley)

Posted June 24, 2014

Homegoing of a Saint: Pastor Samuel P. Pettagrue, Jr., Birmingham, AL


BIRMINGHAM, AL (EDITED) – The Rev. Samuel P. Pettagrue Jr., who was pastor of Sardis Baptist Church in Birmingham from 1971-2006 died on Sunday, June 25, 2014. He was 71.

Sardis Baptist grew from a small congregation to more than 3,000 members while Pettagrue was pastor.

The Birmingham City Council passed a resolution of condolence today. Pettagrue was a civil rights activist in the 1960s and worked closely with the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. and the Rev. Ralph Abernathy, noted his attorney, Richard Jaffe.

Sam Pettagrue mugshot.jpgThe Rev. Samuel Pettagrue Jr. (File)
Jaffe said he hoped people would remember Pettagrue’s lifelong service to the community.

“He should be seen for the good that he did for so many people, mostly poor and disadvantaged,” Jaffe said. “He really did live a life of service.”

Before coming to Birmingham as pastor of Sardis Baptist Church, Pettagrue was the youth pastor at West Hunter Street Baptist Church in Atlanta. There, he was a key assistant to Abernathy in civil rights activities.

He was the first chapter president of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference in Birmingham, said Yvonne Lowery-Kennedy, daughter of civil rights leader the Rev. Joseph Lowery.

“He’s done so much in this city,” Kennedy said. “There are so many young men he inspired that are now in the ministry.”

Homegoing of a Saint: Rev. Tony L. Jones, Lexington, Kentucky

Screen Shot 2014-06-25 at 10.19.54 PM
The homegoing service for the Rev. T.L. Jones, former pastor of Macedonia Baptist Church,
Keene, Kentucky will be held on Monday, June 30, 2014 at Imani Baptist Church,
1555 Georgetown Road, Lexington, KY. Visitation is from 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.
Service begins at 1:00 p.m.


JONES Rev. T.L., 64, husband of Arlene Jones and son of Mildred
and the late Scott Jones, Jr., went home
to be with the Lord on Tuesday, June 24, 2014.
He retired from Kuhlman Electric.
He was a member at 1st Baptist Versailles and
was the former Pastor of Macedonia Baptist, Keene, KY, for 33 years.
He is survived by Audrea (Matthew) Brown, Hollie (TC) Walker,
Anthony (Betsi) Jones, Tony L. Jones, Jr.,
and Timothy Harris.
Service 1pm Mon,
Imani Baptist Church.
Visit 11am. Arr. O. L. Hughes & Sons.

Homegoing of a Saint – Pastor Roland C. Woods, Indianapolis, IN

INDIANAPOLIS, INDIANA – Pastor Roland C. Woods, pastor of the Mt. Sinai Life Church, went home to be with the Lord on Sunday, June 15, 2014. He was 72. This information will be updated along with biographical information.

The homegoing services have been announced as follows:

Visitation and Wake
Friday, June 20, 2014 – 5:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.

Celebration of Life
Saturday, June 21, 2014 – 11:00 a.m.

All services will be held at
Umoja Christian Church
3685 Commercial Drive
Indianapolis, Indiana 46222

Dr. Donald R. Hudson, Host Pastor

His son, Pastor Christopher Woods, is the eulogist.

A Social Media Campaign to honor Dr. A. Louis Patterson

Preachers . . . lend me your ears.

Let’s start a social media campaign to honor the life and legacy of the late Dr. Albert Louis Patterson, Jr., who went home to be with the Lord.

I’m hoping we can get at least 2,000 preachers and laypersons to honor Dr. Patterson, one of the greatest pulpiteer of this generation, by simply placing his photograph as your profile picture on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and other social media outlets, until his homegoing service on Thursday, April 17, 2014.

Below is a picture you can use or use any other photos of Dr. Patterson. We want the nation and world to know that a great (preaching) man of Israel (the Word of God) hath fallen.

+Pastor Robert Earl Houston
Frankfort, Kentucky


Updated Information for Dr. Albert Louis Patterson, Jr.


in an effort to accommodate the large crowds on thursday we have extended viewing and added tomorrow wednesday april 16th from 9:00 am until 5 pm! my father, the legendary dr. a. louis patterson jr. will lie in state @ the altar of mount corinth baptist church in houston, texas! in addition, we have secured the auditorium of phillis wheatley high school directly adjacent to the church for services on thursday morning @ 11:00 am April 17th 2014. finally, services will also be streamed worldwide online @ #JOYFORTHEJOURNEY

GScreen Shot 2014-04-09 at 7.11.02 PMood morning everyone. I spoke with the Mount Corinth Missionary Baptist Church staff and the services are as follows:

April 17, 2014

All services held at
Mount Corinth Missionary Baptist Church
4901 Providence Street
Houston, Texas 77020
(713) 674-5667 – Church Office
(713) 674-9914 – Church Fax

View begins at 8:30 a.m. CST
Seating begins at 10:00 a.m. CST
Services begin at 11:00 a.m. CST

This information may be subject to change by the discretion of the family.

Homegoing of a Saint: Dr. A. Louis Patterson, Jr., Houston, TX

by Robert Earl Houston

The acknowledged “Godfather” of expository preaching among African-American preachers was called home to be with the Lord today, April 9, 2014 – the Reverend Dr. Albert Louis Patterson, Jr., pastor of the Mount Corinth Missionary Baptist Church of Houston, Texas.

I met Dr. Patterson when I was a much younger man when he would preach in Revival in Portland, Oregon. To say Dr. Patterson was one of a kind is a misnomer because generations of preachers have since imitated and emulated their preaching preaching after Dr. Patterson.

He wasn’t just an expository preacher. He was a preaching lyricist of the highest order. To hear Dr. Patterson was to hear gumbo-listic preaching – he hit you with the text, oratory, poetry, interrogative statements (“I ask myself each day, Al Patterson are you….”), engagement, tenacity for the truths of the text, humor and truth. You would leave a preaching moment with Dr. Patterson in awe.

Later in life, in my 20s, I had the privilege to be selected to be a facilitator for a class at the L.K. Williams Institute and the speaker was none other than Dr. Patterson. Those moments before and after the class were priceless. I was the only one there from Portland and I hadn’t been pastoring yet and Dr. Patterson’s syllabus was not the notes he passed out, but the words he spoke.

Years later, our paths crossed at least once a year at WHW Ministries’ Expository Preaching and Teaching Conference, the L.K. Williams Institute, the E.K. Bailey Expository International Expository Preaching Conference, the National Baptist Convention, USA, Inc., and the Greater Trinity Baptist Church where one of his beloved sons in the faith, Dr. Clyde Elliott Gaines is the pastor.

Screen Shot 2014-04-09 at 7.11.02 PMAt that time in San Diego, I was pastoring the New Hope Friendship Missionary Baptist Church and Dr. Patterson came every year and as his time came to stand, he was always complimentary of yours truly. “Pastor Houston is what we would call a quadruple threat . . . he can sing, tickle the ivories of the piano and organ, pray, and can preach.” I always valued his complimentary nature and you could tell he was not being just polite and he never passed out complimentary comments that were not true.

“Dr. Pat” as many of us call him sent young preachers flocking to the front row. He was a living example that you didn’t need a whoop, didn’t need the accompaniment of musicians, didn’t need a soulful strut in your voice, and you didn’t need a fancy suit to preach. He didn’t just closed but it was celebratory. He didn’t try to whoop but it was like lion’s roar. And the favorite of many a preacher (including me) was when he began to gear into his close he had almost a “crying close” when he would drop to the bass of his range, “…. and I—- don’t know how long it will be . . .” That was the Patterson moment I waited for in the sermon.

He leaves a plethora of preachers whom he has influenced. From the way we wore our suits (always black suits, tie, and extra long shirt cuffs), to an attentive ear during the sermon and an infectious smile. He wasn’t just a preacher, he was THE TEMPLATE for preachers.

He was a preacher, pastor, theologian, husband and a father of preachers. His traveling companion was his beloved wife, Melba and he had three children – Anthony, Albert III, Alan, and Alette.

A few highlights from his storied career:

- Recognized three times by his peers as a “Living Legend.”
– Taught and preached at the National Baptist Convention, USA, Inc.
– Lectured for the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association.
– Lectured for the Promise Keepers.
– Lectured for the Preachers Division, National Baptist Congress.
– Named by Ebony as one of America’s Greatest Black Preachers.
– Inducted into the Morehouse College Hall of Preachers.
– Pastored congregations in California and Texas.
– Author of three books, “Joy For the Journey,” “Wisdom in Strange Places,” and “Prerequisites for a Good Journey.”
– Lecturer, The Urban Alternative.
– Lecturer, American Baptist College, Nashville, TN.
– Lecturer, Mid-American Theological Seminary.
– Presenter in all four National Baptist conventions.
– Guest preacher in 14 State Conventions.
– Conductor of 25 different cities’ City Wide Revival.
– Lecturer, Morehouse College of Religion.
– Writer for Judson Press.
– Writer for the African-American Pulpit.
– Preacher of over 100 sermons and lecturers in the National Baptist Convention.

There will never be another Albert Louis Patterson, Jr.  As he would close sometimes, “When I can read my title clear to mansions in the skies, I bid farewell to every fear, and wipe my weeping eyes . . .”

Well done, Dr. Patterson, well done.



by Pastor Robert Earl Houston

H.B. Charles Jr.

About life, preaching, church, books, and other stuff.


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