Bishop David Lee Ellis
Pentecostal Assemblies of the World
1935 ~ 1996
Bishop David L. Ellis a native of Chicago, was endowed at birth October 4, 1935, with a tremendous Christian heritage. His parents, the late Elder Charles H. and Florence Lucille Ellis, was the founding pastor of Chicago's Indiana Avenue Pentecostal Church of God, established in 1934.
Bishop David Ellis the eleventh child of their union was born October 4, 1935, and was to mature in an environment of close knit family harmony with deep admiration and respect for his parents. He witnessed his father's relentless pursuits in establishing the Indiana Avenue church and shepherdizing it through the post depression years of the 30's, the turbulent war years of the 40's and the post war era. He marveled at his mother's ability to manage the care and comfort of her home and family and at the same time share her husband's struggle in building his church. He learned some of his most valuable life lessons from from these saintly parents, lessons that served him well in the years ahead when he began his pastorate.
Following elementary and secondary education in Chicago, he studied at the Moody Bible institute in Chicago. He ws filled with the Holy Ghost on January 26, 1948. He preached his initial sermon at Indiana Avenues Pentecostal Church in June, 1953. From his marriage on September 9, 1954 to Wilma Ruth Bardwell, there are four daughters and three sons. Two of his sons are ministers. Elected as Pastor of New Bethel Temple (now known as Greater Grace Temple of the Apostolic Faith) in May, 1962, he ultimately moved to Detroit, Michigan to assume full time pastoral obligations. As its history relates, Greater Grace Temple's remarkable progress is unparalleled in today's history of Black apostolic churches.
Bishop Ellis was honored in 1975 with his Doctor of Divinity Degree; in 1977 with a Doctor of Humanities Degree and in 1982 he was ordained as Bishop of the Pentecostal Assemblies of the World, Diocesan of the 30th Episcopal District of the Georiga State Council. He also served as the Assistant Presiding Bishop of the Pentecostal Assemblies of the World. Bishop Ellis' life can be summed up in in his theme song, "Down through the years...GOD's been good to me." On March 19, 1996 Bishop David L. Ellis went home to his eternal reward. Audio Recordings of Bishop David Ellis are available in our Audio Library.