EDITOR’S NOTE: This is the first of a two-part series of Making Headline News’ coverage of retired Memphis Pastor Andrew Jackson, Sr., who will be elevated to the Office of Bishopric next week during the Church of God In Christ’s 110th National Holy Convocation in St. Louis.
DALLAS — For Shirley Jackson, it was an adjustment worth making, one that essentially changed the overall landscape of her life.
“It’s been a blessing, to be honest,” Jackson, during an interview this week with Making Headlines News, said when asked how to assess her marriage to the retired Andrew Jackson, Sr., the Founder and former Senior Pastor of Faith Temple Ministries Church of God In Christ. “I had to adjust to him because I was by myself for over 30 years.”
For Shirley Jackson, the past two-plus years have brought about a renewed sense of appeasement and wholeness, not to mention a newfound disposition on life, particularly since she and Andrew Jackson, Sr. tied the knot on October 5, 2015.
And, in the coming days, Shirley Jackson will join her husband in St. Louis, where he will witness what figures to be arguably one of the most memorable moments in his illustrious pastoral career.
A native of Grady, Arkansas, Andrew Jackson, Sr. will officially be consecrated to the Office of Bishopric during the COGIC’s 110th National Holy Convocation November 6-14.
The Holy Convocation is the annual gathering of the members of the COGIC, during which they assemble for praise and worship services, the purpose of electing bishops to the General Board, and creating strategic plans for national meetings for the ensuing year.
A Pentecostal Holiness Christian denomination with a predominantly African-American membership, the Church of God In Christ is comprised of nearly five million members throughout the United States and roughly 12,000 congregations.
Widely regarded as the largest Pentecostal church and the fifth largest Christian church in the U.S., COGIC-based institutions can be found in more than 60 countries. Interestingly, its worldwide membership is comprised of somewhere in the neighborhood of six-to-eight million members.
Also, there are more than 15,000 COGIC congregations globally.
FOLLOW COGIC ONLINE: http://www.cogic.org.
While Shirley Jackson describes Andrew Jackson’s much-anticipated elevation to the church’s highest office as “long overdue,” she is especially grateful that this admirable exploit will finally come to fruition, in large part because her husband’s faith-based resume in the Body of Christ is such that he essentially had positioned himself for such a time as now.
“He deserves it,” Shirley Jackson said of her husband’s forthcoming consecration. “I knew this was something he really wanted. This is something he’s worked 47 years for.”
To grasp a thorough concept of why the former Faith Temple Ministries’ pastor has earned his way to the church’s most covenant office, look no further than the immeasurable foundation he laid for an institution he founded in 1969 in the heart of South Memphis before calling it a career in June 2016.
“He’s (been) working the office of a bishop all along as 1 Timothy tells us,” Shirley Jackson said. “He’s birthed a lot of pastors out of his church and he was the husband to one wife for 58 years.”
Long before Andrew and Shirley Jackson exchanged nuptials, Shirley had become a fixture throughout the Mid-South-area medical sector.
A graduate of the University of Memphis with a Bachelor of Science degree in Nursing, Shirley Jackson had spent more than four decades as an award-winning nursing professional, most notably eight years in both Case Management and OB-GYN, three years as part of Emergency Room Procedures, and 11 years in Medical Surgery Assistance.
A nursing tenure that began in 1974 until her retirement in 2015, Shirley Jackson’s career also includes having worked as a school nurse for both the Memphis and Shelby County Schools systems from 2006-2010.
Interestingly, she is the mother of three daughters (Angela Anderson, Kimberly King, and Alisha Perry), and has four grandchildren (Cameron Farwell, Karington Boyd, Kaleb King, and Kalani King).
“He’s been a blessing to me and my girls,” Shirley Jackson said of her husband’s impact on her and her family. “They honor him because he gives them sound advice. He’s helped me to learn to love people where they are. He’s given me so much insight as it relates to my spiritual growth.”
To her husband’s credit, it is the kind of awareness to which many throughout the Body of Christ can greatly attest, the kind of insight by which many will surely reflect upon and celebrate once Andrew Jackson, Sr. is officially consecrated in the coming days.
“He’s helped so many people,” Shirley Jackson said of her husband’s well-publicized pastoral legacy. “So this is something he’s worked for and earned.”
All while making the proper — and necessary — adjustments in the process.
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Andre T. Johnson is the Founder and Publisher of Making Headline News. A 2000 graduate of the University of Memphis School of Journalism and a former reporter of sports for the Memphis Commercial Appeal newspaper, Johnson covers the NBA Southwest Division from Dallas, Texas. To reach Johnson, call him at 901-690-6587 or send email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Also, follow him on Twitter @AJ_Journalist.