COGIC Loses A Giant: We Honor Bishop Phillip Aquilla Brooks, II
Beloved Bishop Phillip Aquilla Brooks II, First Assistant Presiding Bishop of the Church Of God In Christ, Inc. and Pastor of New St. Paul Tabernacle COGIC in Detroit, MI, passed away on April 9th, 2020.
Bishop Phillip Aquilla Brooks placed first in his life the worship of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. His faith, obedience and commitment to the Word of God was the foundation of his service within the Kingdom of God. Serving as Jurisdictional Prelate of the Historic First Ecclesiastical Jurisdiction of Michigan and first Chief Adjutant of the Church Of God In Christ, Bishop Brooks founded New St. Paul Tabernacle COGIC and established Faith Community Mortgage, the first church-owned mortgage company in the country. Bishop Brooks was the first African American pastor to broadcast on television in Detroit, and also produced the first National COGIC television special.
From its humble beginnings, Bishop Phillip Aquilla Brooks’ ministry reflects an impressive record of accomplishments and service to God and to community. After founding New St. Paul Tabernacle Church Of God In Christ in Detroit, MI in 1953, then Elder Brooks founded and hosted the March of Faith Radio Broadcast in the late 1960’s, proclaiming the Word of God over the airwaves each Sunday morning.
By 1975 he was appointed Jurisdictional Prelate of the Historic First Ecclesiastical Jurisdiction of Michigan, commonly known as, Northeast Michigan Jurisdiction. That same year, he established the March of Faith Television Broadcast. A dynamic speaker and deliverer of the word, Bishop Brooks was the first African American pastor to broadcast on television in Detroit. The broadcast aired on WGPR 62, the first Black-owned television station in the country. The March of Faith Broadcast Ministry continues to this day, both on radio and on television.
Bishop Brooks also expanded his local ministry into a variety of community outreach programs. Among the projects he established are:
- Grandmont-Rosedale Christian Day School
- New St. Paul Non-Profit Housing Corporation
- Faith Community Mortgage
- Faith Manor Senior Citizens Apartments
- New St. Paul Community Development Center
- New St. Paul Tabernacle Headstart Agency
STELLAR COMMITMENT TO THE NATIONAL CHURCH
During his ministerial career, Bishop Brooks forged a path which distinguished him as one of the most respected leaders in the Church Of God In Christ. His vision has helped transform the denomination while upholding COGIC tradition. In 1984 he was elevated to the General Board of the Church Of God In Christ Inc. That same year, he co-authored and published the best-selling manual, Understanding Bible Doctrine as Taught By The Church Of God In Christ. Between 1984-1997, he donated all profits from the sale of the book to COGIC.
In 2001, Bishop Brooks spearheaded a drive by the Michigan Council of Bishops, of which he was founder and president, to raise money for New York residents who’d lost their jobs after the 911 World Trade Center attacks. In 2003, Bishop Brooks provided housing in Detroit, MI and in New Orleans, LA for families displaced by Hurricane Katrina. With the Michigan Council of Bishops he also raised $100,000 for National COGIC Charities’ Hurricane Katrina relief efforts. In 2004, his humanitarianism and civic contributions earned him an honorary doctorate degree from Lewis Business College, Michigan’s only Historically Black college.
Bishop Brooks was elected Second Assistant Presiding Bishop of the Church Of God In Christ, Inc. in 2007, and in 2009, was elevated to First Assistant Presiding Bishop under Presiding Bishop Charles E. Blake, Sr.
DEVOTED FAMILY MAN
A devoted family man, Bishop Brooks and his lovely wife, Missionary Doris Brooks, married in 1952. He is survived by 2 children, Evangelist Faithe Brooks and Minister Phillip Brooks II, and grandchildren Candace, Katrina, and Phillip III.
Bishop Phillip Aquilla Brooks II, beloved and often affectionately called “Mr. Church of God In Christ”, will be sorely missed.