Widow of Bishop Patterson says husband's vision will continue 04/02/07 reported by Ben Watson.
The widow of COGIC Bishop G.E. Patterson is grateful for the outpouring of love for her husband and now she's speaking out.
Make no mistake about it, Louise Patterson is a strong lady.
She showed that strength during church services Sunday when she spoke to the congregation.
After one of the most challenging weeks of her life, Louise Patterson stood where her husband often stood and tried to give members a positive perspective on his passing.
"First I do honor God for his goodness, for his mercy, for his kindness toward us. He gave us a gift and when it was time he took that gift back. But, we stand today rejoicing. That's what our pastor would want us to do," said Louise Patterson.
Mrs. Patterson urged members to not stay too long in their grief. Instead, she challenged the congregation to continue Bishop G.E. Patterson's legacy of faith.
Louise Patterson added, "he would say to this congregation, 'stay not too long at the grave.' We have a mission Temple of Deliverance. We are going to keep the ministry and the name of Bishop G.E. Patterson. Glory to God perpetuated as long as this ministry strives.
Patterson also took time to thank the millions of people who offered their support following her husband's death, "for those of you who went the whole way, I thank you for the city of Memphis. I tell you they left no stone unturned. The city of Memphis rallied to this great leader that God loaned us."
Patterson says before her husband's death he laid out a blue print for the future of the church, so her husband's vision will continue for years to come.
And Mrs. Patterson says you will continue to see the Bishop's TV sermons. The church plans to continue to air the sermons on television.
In lieu of flowers, the church has been accepting donations for the TV ministry.
Thousands pay final respects to Bishop Patterson
Reported by Ben Watson (03/31/07)
It was a day of prayers and praise, as thousands said farewell to beloved COGIC Presiding Bishop G.E. Patterson.
Just like the memorial services on Thursday and Friday nights, Saturday's funeral for Bishop G.E. Patterson was filled with emotion and praise.
His church was standing room only as people came from around the world to honor the man known to many as a preacher's preacher.
There was a long list of notable names on the program and in the audience at Saturday's memorial service for Bishop Patterson.
Rainbow PUSH founder, Reverend Jesse Jackson, NAACP Chairman Julian Bond and musician Isaac Hayes looked on while COGIC elders covered Patterson's coffin in a shroud.
Former President Bill Clinton called Patterson a good and faithful servant, "today there is a great crowd of people here including heroes of the Civil Rights Movement, Reverend Jackson, Julian Bond the young Mayor of Detroit Mayor Kilpatrick, because of the kind of person Bishop Patterson was. I think its only fitting that you have had three ceremonies to celebrate his service to the community to the states and to the nation."
President George W. Bush could not be present, however, Housing and Urban Development Secretary Alphonso Jackson spoke on his behalf.
Speaking as First Assistant Presiding Bishop the Reverend Charles Blake of California encouraged the church to honor Patterson by continuing to spread the word, "and I hear Bishop Patterson saying go on with the work, don't stop because I've stopped, go on with the work there is much more to be done."
Cogic leaders say its what the man called the preacher's preacher would have wanted.
"And if you really want to honor this man, give a tribute to this man let's re-commit ourselves to serve God with everything that is in us, we got to serve God," said Blake.
The thousands who knew G.E. Patterson will live on with memories of a man who they say understood the meaning of servant hood, one who found himself on the cutting edge of ministry in the community, in government and surely in his church.
As the head of Temple of Deliverance, Patterson became one of the most well-respected church officials in the country. Broadcasts of his sermons were broadcast internationally on a weekly basis, on networks that included Black Entertainment Television and Trinity Broadcasting Network.
Patterson died on March 20 of heart failure. He was married to his wife, Louise, for more than 40 years.
More than 14,000 mourners pay respect to Bishop Patterson
Reported by Anna Marie Hartman (03/28/07)
The mood was somber but the spirit was uplifting as hundreds filed past the casket carrying Bishop G E Patterson.
"Bishop Patterson will long be remembered as a man of the people, he was a man of God," says Sheriff Mark Luttrell.
The line flowed quickly through the historic Mason Temple. Outside of COGIC headquarters the line filed up a mile long.
"We're very glad he was such a spiritual giant in our city, certainly we'll miss him but heaven is smiling today," says Evangelist Jannie Foster.
A 12 hour wake didn't seem long enough for those wanting to pay their last respects, to the beloved Temple of Deliverance pastor.
By 7:00 p.m. Wednesday, an estimated $12,000 people visited his body.
"He was a great man a dynamic speaker and I believe he would help you if he could if you would let him," says visitor Irene Weaver.
Patterson will be remembered as a legend who considered himself a common man.
Foster adds, "we just really need to remember his teaching, pass them on and share with others."
Bishop Patterson will be remembered as a man who loved his God and lived for his church.
"And you just can't put a price on that. May he be at peace," adds Foster.
Bishop Patterson's belief in the "Power of Prayer" reported by Ben Watson
Three services are scheduled this week to honor the late COGIC Presiding Bishop G.E. Patterson.
Since his death last Tuesday we've been telling you about the outpouring of condolences for Patterson, his family and millions of COGIC members.
Now, we take you back to 2001 when we interviewed Patterson about one of his favorite subjects: "The Power Of Prayer."
"Prayer is keeping in contact with God, simply put, when you pray you speak to the father," explained Bishop Patterson.
And for believers the power of prayer is unmatchable.
McStella Hinds tells anyone who'll listen that the power of prayer delivered her from breast cancer.
"It's in remission and I know that I have the faith and I don't believe it will attack my body again.
Hinds' battle with cancer wasn't easy.
"I had to have a masoctmy in 1993 and I had family and friends and co-workers praying with me and thru that that gave me the strength to go on and know that I could live beyond cancer," said Hinds.
And as someone who works around people with cancer at Methodist Hospital, she was well aware of the many risks.
Hinds is convinced prayer's the reason her treatment worked.
We asked Hinds if there was ever a time she thought prayer was not going to be enough.
Hinds adds, "no. Because I believe that God grants every sincere prayer."
But while Hinds is convinced, there are some who doubt the healing power of prayer.
Ministers say believing may come down to the strength of your faith.
"And if a person does not believe the scriptures there is nothing that can happen that will make them believe, they'll call it magic they will call it anything they will want to call it other than the will of God," said Patterson.
Dr. Scott Morris doesn't have to be convinced about prayer's power, he's one of many doctors who prays every day.
And he says the evidence of prayer's power is growing.
"There are studies all over the country going on at Duke, East TN State, at the Mayo Clinic where the impact of prayer on people lives is being documented to have a very positive significant effect," said Morris.
One theory being looked at is that when people pray chemicals are released into the brain that help the body fight illness.
But perhaps the most widespread theory among believers is that God allows prayer and medicine to work together.
"I often say to people as it related to prayer that prayer does not always change the condition - that if prayer does not change the condition prayer will condition you," said Bishop Patterson.
"He gives the doctors the powers to see our infirmities and to give us the medication for our infirmities but its his spirit that goes into the medecine and it goes in there with the doctors and it brings us thru," said Hinds.
Reported by Ben Watson, 03-21-07
Mourners stopped by the Temple of Deliverance Church of God in Christ sanctuary all day Wednesday to pay their respects to the memory and legacy of the late Bishop G.E. Patterson.
Bishop G.E. Patterson was blessed with a close circle of relatives and friends.
They talked with me out about the man they described as one one of the greatest preachers, teachers and leaders in the world.
In the sanctuary where Bishop Patterson preached, those closest to the COGIC leader shared their feelings.
"And, ah I have never affected so profoundly by any other person in my life like Bishop Patterson," says church member, Dr. Charles Wallace.
Dr. Wallace was Patterson's physician.
He says through his battle with cancer, Bishop Patterson's faith never wavered.
Wallace adds, "ah tremendous courage and confidence, he was never really worried about sickness and disease. He was, he had prepared himself in fact that was just a hurdle to sidestep."
Patterson's cousin Minnie Jackson spoke for the family. She asked for the community's prayers.
"Yeah its hurting, its painful you know as a human being but we know that he lived and so he's gone on to be with the Lord so we have that joy. We're sad but yet we're joyful also because he's gone on to be with the Lord."
And other church members agree.
Many of Bishop G.E. Patterson's personal contributions to the community went unnoticed because he didn't want them publicized.
While his many ministries were helping those in need with he and his wife were also making personal contributions to many Mid-South organizations.
His passing has had a tremendous impact on the students and faculty at LeMoyne-Owen College.
Bishop Patterson completed part of his education there and was a constant supporter and an inspiration to those who attend the college.
As recently as last year he and his wife made a personal contribution of $35,000 dollars to the school. Not only has he been instrumental in a financial way, but he's also encouraged many young people to further their educations here.
"He has laid a foundation and a legacy through his philanthropic gifts as well as through his directing students and we that throughout this city and this country that others will follow his leadership and the efforts that he's done," says Roger Brown with LeMoyne-Owen College.
Bishop Patterson also donated thousands of dollars in scholarship money out of his own pocket in addition to the Cogic Charities scholarship fund which he founded several years ago.
One way the College will remember Bisop Patterson is during their First Sunday annual performance, in which students from the art departments at the school put on a program. That's the first Sunday in April at 4PM at the Orpheum.
That program was already scheduled and right now they are discussing how to integrate a tribute to Bishop Patterson.
Bishop G.E. Patterson, members say his legacy will last forever.
The saints of Church of God in Christ were in grief Tuesday after the loss of their beloved bishop.
They say they will rejoice in his memory with tears in their eyes.
As the sun set, the saints arrived to mourn the passing of Bishop G.E. Patterson.
"He loved people. A man of great humility even with all that God had blessed him with, and just a wonderful example to anybody who seeks to serve," said COGIC Elder Bobby White.
Saints hung flags at half mast outside Temple of Deliverance Church of God in Christ.
Inside, Tuesday night service became a time for deep prayer.
"We all loved him and cared about him and respected him and we've come to give him honor in prayer," said COGIC Saint Ollie Jones.
Though Bishop Patterson was ailing for some time, followers like Ollie Jones say it was hard to believe he was actually gone.
"It's not true, it;s not true. I said I can't believe it, it's not true," said Jones.
Elder Bobby White says it's a time to rejoice in Bishop Patterson's legacy and to pray. "We hope that they would pray for the strength of the family."
He says it will be hard to replace the world renowned leader. "We're just following the leading of the Lord into the future."
"We've still got to keep the church going, because this church here is a lighthouse for the world," said Jones.
Saints say their Bishop is now in the place where the saints hope to go.
Patterson often said, "Be healed, be delivered and be set free."
Action News 5 has learned that Church of God in Christ Bishop G.E. Patterson passed away Tuesday afternoon.
The following is a statement from the Carter Malone Group, which acted as spokesperson for Patterson and COGIC:
This afternoon at 4:03 p.m. at Methodist University Hospital in Memphis, Tennessee, the Presiding Bishop of the Church of God In Christ, Bishop G.E. Patterson, passed away as a result of heart failure. Patterson was surrounded by his wife, Mrs. Louise Patterson, and his family.
Patterson served as the leader of the fourth-largest Protestant religious denomination in the world with an estimated membership of 6.5 million members. He led the denomination since November 2000.
Two years ago, Patterson disclosed he had prostate cancer. In January, he was hospitalized with undisclosed illness.
Below is Patterson's bio (bbless.org):
Bishop Gilbert Earl Patterson was born in 1939 to Bishop W. A. and Mrs. Mary Patterson, Sr. in Humboldt, Tennessee. He was reared in Memphis, Tennessee and Detroit, Michigan. Bishop J. S. Bailey ordained him in 1958 as an elder in the Church of God in Christ. In 1962, Bishop Patterson became co-pastor with his father at Holy Temple Church of God in Christ in Memphis, Tennessee. Bishop Patterson continued his pastorate in 1975 as the founder and pastor of Temple of Deliverance, the Cathedral of the Bountiful Blessings in Memphis, Tennessee. Today, Temple of Deliverance Church of God in Christ is one of the nation's fastest growing congregations with over 12,000 on its membership roll. The church is located at 369 G. E. Patterson Avenue.
Temple of Deliverance also serves as the home church base for the rapidly growing Bountiful Blessings Ministries (BBM) which is viewed internationally on BET and TBN cable networks weekly, as well as on local TV stations throughout the nation. BBM has a mailing list of over 100,000 active donors from outside the Memphis viewing audience. Bishop Patterson is founder and president of BBM.
Bishop Patterson is a learned minister. He has studied at the Detroit Bible Institute, and LeMoyne Owen College in Memphis, Tennessee. He holds an honorary Doctorate from Oral Roberts University and is the president of the Charles H. Mason Bible College of Tennessee Fourth Jurisdiction in Memphis, Tennessee. Bishop Patterson is the publisher of Bountiful Blessings Magazine and a contributing writer in the Spirit Filled life Bible (King James Version) published by Thomas Nelson Publishers and edited by Dr. Jack W. Hayford. In July 2002, Whitaker House Publishers released Bishop Patterson's first book entitled "Here Comes The Judge".
Bishop Patterson is a 20th century Apostle of Jesus Christ. He is a renowned national speaker, known for his simplistic messages that transcend all barriers of race, gender, age and walks of life for people around the globe. One of his themes, "Be healed, be delivered, and be set free" has become a popular expression. The nation demand for audio and video tapes is overwhelming. Bishop Patterson is the president and general manager of the Memphis based Radio Station WBBP (1480 AM), a full time gospel station with over 100,000 daily listeners.
Bishop Patterson humbly serves God and his community through the ministries he has established at Temple of Deliverance Church (TOD). These ministries have a positive and direct impact on: unemployment-TOD employs over 100 people and has over 100 local and national vendors; wellness-TOD is a member of the Church Health Center; education-TOD issues scores of $1,000 scholarships annually to students entering or returning to colleges or universities; family life-a prayer ministry with more than 40 telephone lines and a prison ministry that serves in the Criminal Justice Center and the Penal Farm in Memphis, Tennessee. There are numerous other ministries at TOD that address the needs of the community.
Bishop Patterson is a leader of church leaders. He is the Presiding Bishop of Church of God in Christ, Incorporated. Bishop Patterson has helped finance many local churches and helped organize seven other churches across the nation.