Tag Archives: Flint

Bishop J. Drew Sheard Turns Pandemic Heartbreak into Community Healing

By Robert M. Marovich Last March, the COVID-19 pandemic washed over Bishop J. Drew Sheard’s family and associates like a tsunami. His brother, the Reverend Ethan B. Sheard, tested positive for the virus. So did his children, well-known musicians J Drew II and Kierra. His mother, Willie Mae Sheard, and father, Bishop John H. Sheard, pastor of Greater Mitchell Temple Church of God in Christ in Detroit, also contracted the virus. “It hit my family pretty hard,” Sheard, Senior Pastor of Detroit’s Greater Emmanuel Institutional (GEI) Church of God in Christ, told the Journal of Gospel Music. “The most difficult ...

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RIP: Pastor Steve Hawkins

By Robert M. Marovich A. Jeffrey LaValley informed JGM of the passing of his friend, gospel singer and pastor Steve Hawkins. Born in Waco, Texas, on Valentine’s Day, 1953 (“That’s why I’m such a sweetheart!” he chuckled during our 2014 interview), Hawkins was raised in Cleveland, Ohio, where his father was pastor of the Jerusalem Church of God in Christ. As a youngster, Hawkins learned the finer points of singing from his mother. His uncle and aunt, Dorothy and Lawrence Abrams, took him on the road to open for the Original Five Blind Boys, in which Lawrence was a member ...

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