Florida Senate - 2013                            (NP)    SR 1908
       By Senator Gibson
       9-02446B-13                                           20131908__
    1                          Senate Resolution                        
    2         A resolution recognizing Bishop Rudolph W. McKissick,
    3         Sr., for a lifetime of service and expressing
    4         appreciation for his outstanding leadership in the
    5         faith community and the community at large.
    7         WHEREAS, Bishop Rudolph W. McKissick, Sr., served as a
    8  choral member, music director, and deacon at Bethel Baptist
    9  Institutional Church before being called to succeed Reverend
   10  Robert Wilson as pastor in 1966, and
   11         WHEREAS, the service of Bishop Rudolph W. McKissick, Sr.,
   12  as pastor at Bethel Baptist Institution Church has spanned 47
   13  years and allows him the distinction of being the longest
   14  serving leader of Florida’s oldest African-American church, and
   15         WHEREAS, in demonstration of his strong commitment to a
   16  quality education, Bishop Rudolph W. McKissick, Sr., earned a
   17  bachelor’s degree from Edward Waters College and holds conferred
   18  doctoral degrees from Edward Waters College and Bethune Cookman
   19  University, and
   20         WHEREAS, Bishop Rudolph W. McKissick, Sr., received
   21  additional training at the Tuskegee Institute, Columbia
   22  University, Princeton University, and Luther Rice University and
   23  Seminary, and
   24         WHEREAS, in meeting and supporting the ever-changing needs
   25  and growth of congregants, now numbering more than 12,000,
   26  Bishop Rudolph W. McKissick, Sr., has established more than 50
   27  ministries, including The Help Center, a Christian Mission, a
   28  marriage ministry, a church basketball league, youth retreats,
   29  and a missionary outreach program, and
   30         WHEREAS, the exemplary teachings and spiritual guidance of
   31  Bishop Rudolph W. McKissick, Sr., have inspired more than 50
   32  servant leaders to accept God’s calling to the ministry, and
   33         WHEREAS, in 1993, Bishop Rudolph W. McKissick, Sr., and his
   34  wife of 50 years, Estelle, established the B.E.S.T. (Bethel
   35  Enhancing Students Totally) Academy to support the needs of
   36  elementary and secondary students, and under the leadership of
   37  Estelle McKissick, B.E.S.T. has become a valuable community
   38  resource and earned recognition as an approved summer school
   39  site for Duval County’s most academically challenged students,
   40  and
   41         WHEREAS, Bishop Rudolph W. McKissick, Sr., has held
   42  membership on numerous boards and commissions, including
   43  appointment to the first Board of Trustees at the University of
   44  North Florida, the Jacksonville Urban League, and the YMCA James
   45  Weldon Branch, and is a member of the NAACP and the Omega Psi
   46  Phi fraternity, and
   47         WHEREAS, in September 2011, Bishop Rudolph W. McKissick,
   48  Sr., was elevated to Bishop of Marriage and Family in the Full
   49  Gospel Baptist Church Fellowship International, and
   50         WHEREAS, Bishop Rudolph W. McKissick, Sr., now shepherds
   51  his flock with his son and co-pastor, Bishop Rudolph McKissick,
   52  Jr., and, together, they are partnering with ministries across
   53  the globe, and
   54         WHEREAS, the outstanding leadership and service of Bishop
   55  Rudolph W. McKissick, Sr., has been recognized with numerous
   56  awards, including the Meritorious Leadership Award, presented by
   57  Dr. Martin Luther King, Sr.; the 1992 Silver Medallion
   58  Humanitarian award, presented by the National Conference for
   59  Christians and Jews; and The City of Jacksonville’s Human
   60  Relations Award, and
   61         WHEREAS, in addition to his exemplary professional career,
   62  Bishop Rudolph W. McKissick, Sr., is also a dedicated husband to
   63  his wife, Estelle Williams McKissick, loving father to his son,
   64  Bishop Rudolph McKissick, Jr., and doting grandfather to his
   65  grandchildren, Jocelyn, Janai, and Joshua, and
   66         WHEREAS, with an abiding commitment to his faith in God,
   67  enduring dedication to the Bethel congregation, and undying love
   68  and faithfulness to his family and community, Bishop Rudolph W.
   69  McKissick, Sr., has paved a pathway of service and gratitude
   70  which will forever be remembered in the hearts and minds of the
   71  Bethel Baptist Institutional Church congregation, NOW,
   74  Be It Resolved by the Senate of the State of Florida:
   76         That Bishop Rudolph W. McKissick, Sr., is recognized for a
   77  lifetime of service as the esteemed pastor of Bethel Baptist
   78  Institutional Church in Jacksonville.