BISHOP W.L. PORTER
For over forty years, Bishop W. L. Porter touched the lives of men and women of this area and throughout our country. His touch was so effective and far-reaching that he was given the name that God chose for those He uses to do His will: ”Servant.”

A True Servant is one who unselfishly gives of himself to others, and without reservation, is loyal to those he serves.

Bishop W.L. Porter exemplified these characteristics during more than forty years of dedicated and faithful service to the leaders and great saints of the Church of God In Chris and to his fellow man.

He was introduced to the Executive Leadership of the Church by Bishop L.H. Ford in 1953, when he served as his assistant in the department of Public Relations. It was during that time he became acquainted with and served our Founding Father of the National Church, Bishop C.H. Mason.

After the demise of Bishop Mason in 1961, Bishop Porter assisted Bishop A.B. McEwen, Sr., Chairman of the Executive Committee, Senior Bishop O.T. Jones, Sr. and the interim leadership of the Church in holding together our people and our great heritage. He was available then when there was a need and that same spirit and allegiance continued until he passed in 2009.

The year 1968 brought with it our first elected Bishop J.O. Patterson, Sr. continuing in his role as a loyal servant, Bishop Porter assisted Bishop Patterson with the many duties he was to perform as head of our growing Church, has now become international.

Continuing his legacy of service, in 1981, Bishop Porter was appointed Jurisdictional Bishop of Central Jurisdiction of Tennessee. He was assigned approximately thirty churches, and within seventeen years, the Jurisdiction had grown to over sixty churches. Bishop Porter developed and extension program that assisted pastors in Central Tennessee Jurisdiction in securing approximately $2 million in financing for church mortgages. At the direction of each of the Presiding Bishops, he was instrumental in helping pastors and bishops across the country in obtaining loans and guarantees of more than $5 million. He used his experience to aid pastors and church leaders alike.

In 1989, God saw fit to call Bishop Patterson from labor to reward. As usual, Bishop Porter was on hand assisting the leadership of the Church through another transition. Because of his proven record of service and loyalty, he was again called upon by the leader of the Church, Bishop L.H. Ford to assist with the administrative affairs of the Church. He was worked with Bishop Ford untiringly and helped him to attain an unprecedented record of new construction in our Church.

In March 1995, God called another great laborer, Bishop Ford, home to his reward. Characteristically, Bishop Porter stood in the gap, providing assistance of the new Church leader, Bishop Chandler David Owens, in his efforts to redefine the role of the church now and into the 21st century.

In 1999, Bishop Porter was elected to the highest serving board of the Church of God in Christ, the General Board, which consists of 12 members, including the Presiding Bishop.

This great leader who followed the guidance of his parents, Mr. and Mrs. James Porter, Sr, and was nurtured by his siblings was instrumental in shaping the lives of his four children, goddaughter and many more. His wife Mrs. Ida M. Flagg Porter faithfully stood by his side as he met challenge and success. Because of the works of Bishop W.L. Porter, many lives have been changed for the good.