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.
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.
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
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.
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.
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.
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.
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
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.
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.