Dr. Eddie L. Hawkins
“Let your conversation be without covetousness; and be content with such things as ye have: For he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.” Hebrews 13:5
Eddie Louis Hawkins was born in Studgard, Arkansas on September 29, 1934. He is one of 9 children; he was saved at the age of 10. Having lost both his parents at an early age, he enlisted in the United States Marine Corp where he served for three years (1952-1955) and enjoyed success as a Golden Glove Featherweight Boxer.
Prior to coming to Cleveland, Pastor Hawkins lived in Flint, Michigan. During this time, a Revivalist by the name of Walter L. Banks from Cleveland, OH visited Flint. The Lord spoke through this man of God and the heart of our Pastor responded. Dr. Banks suggested to Pastor Hawkins that the Baptist Seminary of the Bible of Cleveland would provide a good foundation for becoming knowledgeable of, and established in, the Word of God. Pastor Hawkins enrolled therein in 1958.
As his spiritual needs were being met, the scripture “whoso findeth a wife, findeth a good thing (Proverbs 18:22)” was ever present in his mind. Also in attendance at the Bible Seminary was a young lady by the name of Norma Jean Evans, they met and became husband and wife.
To their union, four children were conceived, Kimberly Joy Harris, Samuel LaVelle, Aundria Holley Ford, and Shafron Emmanuel. Pastor Hawkins has also been blessed with three grandchildren, Erica Lau’ren, Joshua, Keturah.
The Lord continued to bless the work spiritually, On Sunday, February 11, 1962, Bro. Eddie L. Hawkins was ordained and Good Shepherd Bible Center was organized as Good Shepherd Baptist Church, with Reverend Eddie L. Hawkins as Pastor.
In addition to his ministry here at Good Shepherd Baptist Church, Pastor Hawkins trains and mentors numerous ministers, pastors, and church leaders through out the city and other states. In 1998 and 2001, Pastor Hawkins was the honored guest at the annual General Association of Regular Baptist Churches Conference, a national cross-culture meeting of church leaders. Pastor Hawkins also served on the Board of Trustees at Cedarville University. On June 6, 1998, he received an Honorary Doctorate of Divinity from Cedarville University.
God is always gracious to us even when times are difficult. On October 13, 2002, He called Sis. Norma Jean Hawkins home to be with him in glory. We are thankful for her legacy and the impact she had on Good Shepherd Baptist Church. True to God’s faithfulness, after a storm, God will also bring a rainbow. Pastor Hawkins needed a wife by his side, and he married Bonnie Marie Williams and gained another daughter, Stephanie.
Good Shepherd Baptist Church currently has more than 1600 members – We praise God! Under the leadership of our Pastor, two other ministries were birthed – Central Bible Baptist Church and Conservative Baptist Church. He admonishes us in “Getting The Word Of God To The People.”
My Father Planned It All…
We thank the Lord for the legacy of love and endurance Sis. Norma Jean Hawkins left during her 40 years of service to Good Shepherd Baptist Church and its entire flock.
Who can find a virtuous woman?
For her price is far above rubies.
To my Pastor, Friend, and Husband,
On this milestone in your life, I would like to say congratulations. You are a man of integrity and great faith. God had a plan for your life and I am so grateful that his plan included us (Me & Stephanie). His plan has cost us dearly, but his promise is hope and a future. When I think about what I love most about you, it is the reflection of Christ I see in you in everything you do. You are long suffering, you always esteem others more highly than your self you give ithout expecting anything in return, you rejoice in the truth, and you love unconditionally. As we enter into this next season of our lives, I am so grateful to have you as my partner. As you follow Christ, I will follow you.
Forever and Always . . . Your wife & best friend,
(P. S. Thank for being a Mordecai in the life of Stephanie)
Farewell Expression from
Dr. Eddie L. Hawkins, Senior Pastor
Dear Church Family,
For the past fifty years God has blessed me to serve as your Pastor/Teacher. As the time has come to say farewell it has been a blend of bitter/sweet emotions for me. I am thankful that God put me here with you for fifty years. I have had the privilege of marrying some of you, praying a blessing over some of your children, baptizing some, counseling many, praying always for you, watching many of you grow-up, both physically and spiritually, teaching you the Word of God, sharing in your life accomplishes and praying many through difficult times. These memories will serve as a sweet comfort in the years to come.
Retirement is a word not in God’s dictionary; I believe it is a passage of life. It is an opportunity to demonstrate all I have taught and often quoted from the Scriptures. Our Loving Heavenly Father is sufficient in His grace and love to provide for our every need, material and emotional. Scripture reflects in every passage that God has a continuing objective for our lives. I believe that God has rich opportunities for Sis. Hawkins and myself for ministry in His Kingdom that will cause us to wonder how we ever had time for a job previously.
Some of you have pleaded that we not leave the church, but we would never put such an obstacle in the way of the next pastor and his wife who are called here to minister. Be assured, however, that “Grace hath brought Good Shepherd Baptist Church safe thus far, and grace will lead you home.”
We will miss each of you and will continue to pray for you as often as God brings you to mind. Thank you for your love and support down thru the years. Always remember God’s promise in Hebrews 13:5b “I will never leave you nor forsake you.”
Farewell my Church Family —
Your Senior Pastor,
Dr. Eddie L. Hawkins