History of Texas Central Metropolitan Ecclesiastical Jurisdiction
On September 17, 2007, following the retirement of the late Bishop N. H. Henderson, Sr., a Jurisdictional polling was held for the office of the Bishop for the Texas South Central Jurisdiction. Many of the brethren were not satisfied with the results, so on September 18, 2007, a group of 44 pastors came together and petitioned for Superintendent Hewett Richardson, Sr. to become their leader. A letter was drafted, signed, and forwarded to the Presiding Bishop, Bishop Charles E. Blake Sr., and the General Board by "Concerned Pastors". A "Fellowship" was then formed with Superintendent Richardson as the Chairman.
On November 26, 2007, a Fellowship meeting was held at Miracle Tabernacle COGIC, Nacogdoches, TX. Pastor K. Gipson, host pastor. Supt. W.L. Bowie opened the floor discussion of possible names for the new Fellowship. Pastor W.L. Scott offered the name Texas Central East. Chairman Richardson made a motion that Texas Central East be accepted as the official name for the Fellowship. The motion was seconded and unanimously supported. Through much prayer, counseling and constructive advice, Mother Gladys Lockett-Ross was asked to head up the Women's Department as the Director of Women.
On December 14, 2007, the first major State-wide Fellowship meeting was held at the Lily of the Valley COGIC, Houston, TX. Supt. F.E. Fanniel, Sr. host pastor. Mother Gladys Lockett-Ross was introduced and recognized as the Director of Women. During the transition, the Pastors of the Texas Central East Fellowship gathered (Chairman Hewett Richardson Sr., Dr. C.L. Robinson, Supt. W.L. Bowie, Supt. J. Williams, Sr. to name a few) to meet with the Presiding Bishop and General Board in regards of becoming a jurisdiction. April 2009, at the request of the Presiding Bishop, Bishop Charles E. Blake, Sr., all the pastors of TCE Fellowship were asked to attend the COGIC April Call meeting in Memphis, Tennessee. Pastors that could not attend sent notarized documentation indicating their full support. During the COGIC April Call meeting, the TCE Fellowship was officially sanctioned as a COGIC Jurisdiction and renamed Texas Central Metropolitan Ecclesiastical Jurisdiction by the General Board and recognized in the General Assembly.
In November 2009, Bishop Hewett Richardson Sr., was officially consecrated as Bishop and prelate of Texas Central Metropolitan Jurisdiction by Bishop Charles Blake and Mother Gladys Lockett-Ross consecrated as the Supervisor of Women by Mother Willie Mae Rivers.
The leaders and members of the new jurisdiction rejoiced and praised God for his favor.
After 2 years of waiting before the Lord in prayer, and petitioning the National Church, God had granted their request. Bishop Richardson and the Pastors never sought ill will toward their former jurisdiction. They just wanted to be free to work together and serve God.
Now that the jurisdiction was official, it was time for the real formative work to begin. With the help of the Lord and the Godly leadership of Bishop Richardson and Supervisor Ross, the new jurisdiction made great first strides. During this initial phase, executive and department leaders were selected and officially installed, the jurisdiction sought and received its 501c3 designation, established its initial By-laws, administered and encouraged vital training, and celebrated implementation of the key departments and auxiliaries of the National Church.
After 8 years of faithful leadership (2 years as Chairman of the TCE Fellowship and 6 years as the first prelate of the TCM Jurisdiction), Bishop Richardson prayerfully decided to retire as the Jurisdictional Prelate in 2015 due to health issues.
Upon on the retirement of Bishop Richardson, Bishop George Dallas McKinney (General Board member) was assigned by the Presiding Bishop, Charles E. Blake, Sr., the interim Bishop of the Jurisdiction until a new leader would be chosen. In February 2015, a Jurisdictional polling was held for the office of the Jurisdictional Bishop and the results from the polling were in favor of Superintendent Frank E. Fanniel, Sr.
In April 2015, during the COGIC April Call Meeting in Memphis, Tenn., Superintendent Frank E. Fanniel, Sr. was appointed the Jurisdictional Prelate of Texas Central Metropolitan by the Presiding Bishop, Bishop Charles E. Blake, Sr. with the General Board and sanctioned by the General Assembly.
In November 2015, at the 108th Holy Convocation in St. Louis, Mo., Bishop Frank E. Fanniel, Sr. was officially consecrated as Bishop and prelate of Texas Central Metropolitan Jurisdiction by Bishop Charles E. Blake, Sr. At the request of Bishop Fanniel, Mother Dr. Gladys Lockett-Ross continued to serve as the TCMJ Supervisor of Women.
Under the Godly leadership and vision of Bishop Fanniel, much has been accomplished in a short period of time. The jurisdiction has established an Annual Fellowship Strategy Meeting, an Annual Leadership Conference, a Jurisdictional Directory, the review and revision of the Bylaws, a Nationwide prayer every Tuesday morning @ 7 am and a Jurisdictional motto that states, "We are up on the wall, we are doing a great work, and we can't come down!"
To God Be the Glory!