The Crusader Newspaper Group

Clergy unanimously support Reverend Dr. Haynes’ selection as PUSH leader

Pictured (l-r): U.S. Vice President Kamala Harris, Rev. Jesse Jackson and Dr. Frederick D. Haynes, III. (Photos by John L. Alexander, OnAir Daily News)

Photo caption: Pictured (l-r): U.S. Vice President Kamala Harris, Rev. Jesse Jackson and Dr. Frederick D. Haynes, III. (Photos by John L. Alexander, OnAir Daily News)

No matter which religion they represent, a number of Chicago and national pastors late Sunday night, July 16, said Reverend Jesse Jackson’s choice of Reverend Dr. Frederick D. Haynes, pastor of the Friendship-West Baptist Church in Texas as his successor, was “spot on.”

Members of the clergy say the changing of the guard was not only needed but is right on time as the fight for social justice continues to be under attack, and the civil rights’ clock is legally being turned back by political extremists, including the High Court.

Having invited Dr. Haynes to his church many times, Saint Sabina’s Father Michael Pfleger told the Chicago Crusader, “Reverend Haynes is like Reverend Jackson. He is a man of great intelligence, rooted in faith and a passion for justice. I believe he will not only carry on the vision of PUSH but will always respect, embrace and bear witness to the legacy of the one and only Reverend Jesse Jackson.”

Dr. William Barber, president and senior lecturer at Repairers of the Breach and co-chair of the Poor People’s Campaign, spoke glowingly of Dr. Haynes, calling him a “spiritual and intellectual moral giant who has the heart of a pastor and the insight of biblical and historical prophets.”

In an interview with the Chicago Crusader late Sunday night, Barber said Dr. Haynes is well prepared and able to pick up the mantle bestowed upon him by the 81-year-old Jackson, who began his social justice career at the age of 18 while a student at the University of Illinois and matriculated through 2023, checked only by Parkinson’s disease.

Jackson’s mind is still sharp and civil rights leaders like Pfleger, Barber and others still seek his counsel regarding advice and social justice strategy.

Barber said Dr. Haynes “comes to this work not to begin work but to continue. He has been my friend, brother and colleague in the moral fight against poverty, racism, denial of health care, the war on the economy and white nationalism. I look forward to working with him in this larger Rainbow network.

“This choice is spot on,” Barber said. “Dr. Haynes will know how to honor the legacy of Reverend Jackson and expand it and implement a vision for today.”

Reverend Ira Acree, pastor of the Greater St. John Bible Church, said, “I am so happy that my iconic and illustrious mentor, the Reverend Jesse Jackson, Sr., has exercised great wisdom in selecting a new leader for our organization.

“Without a doubt, Dr. Frederick D. Haynes, III, is the perfect choice. We were at the point wherein we desperately needed some new blood and new energy to ignite a fire, and Reverend Haynes is up for the task,” Acree told the Chicago Crusader.

“He has the personality, the pedigree, the preaching gift and the prophetic voice to lead our national movement in this critical stage of our freedom symphony,” Acree stated.

Contacted by the Chicago Crusader, Reverend Dr. Marshall Hatch, pastor of New Mount Pilgrim Church and The Leaders Network, said, “We are absolutely delighted with the choice of Dr. Freddie Haynes to succeed Reverend Jackson at the helm of the Rainbow PUSH Coalition.

“Dr. Haynes is a long-distance freedom fighter and an accomplished pastor, and we look forward to supporting his leadership and helping project his prophetic voice at this critical point in history,” said Hatch.

Reverend Donald Smith, pastor of Holy Jerusalem M.B. Church, believes Dr. Haynes “is a well-prepared, amazing leader that will take Rainbow PUSH back to the prominence and respect of yesteryear.” Smith believes Dr. Haynes “is a modern-day Joshua.”

Humanitarian and prominent businessman Dr. Willie Wilson also believes Reverend Jackson made the right choice. “Dr. Haynes will do well. I believe that God will step in and lead him to do the right thing for this country.”

Radio giant, Dinahlynn Biggs, said, “Time does indeed bring about a change. The Biggs Radio family is forever grateful to Reverend Jackson and the Jackson family for allowing us to be a part of the growth of the Rainbow PUSH Coalition.

“We look forward to the torch that will be carried by Reverend Dr. Haynes as through him, the drum master for justice, Chicago and the world will grow,” said Biggs. “In the words of Reverend Jackson, ‘I Am Somebody.’”

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