Rev. Jesse L. Jackson, Sr. and the Rainbow PUSH Coalition are honoring Gary native Bishop Henry M. Williamson, Sr. as a part of our Father’s Day 10 a.m., Saturday, June 17th, broadcast at the Rainbow PUSH Coalition headquarters, 930 E. 50th St.
Bishop Williamson is being celebrated for his consistent leadership and commitment to the fight for civil rights and his focus on pushing for a partnership between churches and schools by establishing the One Church, One School program that currently hosts 250 partnerships, church-school collaborations in 25 states in America.
“Bishop Williamson has not wavered in his mission to fight for the downtrodden, the poor and the forgotten especially our children who are under attack,” said Rev. Jackson. “We salute him for staying the course during this very trying time in our nation.”
Bishop Williamson plans to issue a call to all “church and community” fathers to step up and help stem the violence that is taking the lives of many innocent children and holding our communities hostage.
Williamson is the 52nd bishop of the Christian Methodist Episcopal (C.M.E.) Church assigned to the First Episcopal District of all C.M.E. churches in Tennessee and Arkansas (180 churches). He is the former national president of Operation PUSH now the Rainbow PUSH Coalition.
Bishop Williamson was born in Arkansas, and reared in Tennessee and Gary, Indiana. He was called to the ministry in 1967 in Gary, Indiana at Israel Christian Methodist Episcopal Church. Bishop J. Claude Allen ordained him Deacon in 1968 and Elder in 1969.
Bishop Williamson is a graduate of the historic Roosevelt High School in Gary, Indiana. He received a B.A. in Sociology from Purdue University Calumet Campus, a Master of Divinity from Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary, Evanston, Illinois, with advanced work in Clinical Pastoral Education. Bishop Williamson was awarded an honorary Doctor of Divinity degree from United Theological Seminary in Monroe, Louisiana .
His pastoral ministry spanned from 1969-2002 including CME Churches in Gary, Indiana (Westside CME Church), Evanston, Illinois (New Hope CME Church), East St. Louis, Illinois ( Pilgrim Temple CME Church), Indianapolis, Indiana (Phillips Temple CME), Jacksonville, Florida (Central CME Church), and Chicago, Illinois (Carter Temple CME Church).
Bishop Williamson was privileged to serve as associate minister at Israel CME Church from 1967-1969 under Dr. Carrell K. Cargle, Sr. and associate pastor of St. Paul CME Church under the leadership of Bishop Dotcy I. Isom, Jr. (1972-1973).