Who's Who in Pentecost > Lewis, A. William (PAW)

9 Jun 2013



Bishop A. William Lewis

Pentecostal Assemblies of the World

 1896 ~ 1973

Bishop Arthur William Lewis was born on August 22, 1896, in the State of Pennsylvania. He was the son of William E. and Catherine Lewis. In his early twenties, he married Anna Strickler, who preceeded him in death in the year 1968. To this union was born one daughter, Barbra; she also preceeded him in death.

On April 19, 1969, he was joined in marriage to Sister Sue D. Gentry in Los Angeles, California. Shortly thereafter they moved their residence from Santa Anna, California to Buchanan, Michigan where he spent his last days. It was while living in Plymouth, Indiana and studying to become a Lutheran minister that Arthur came into contact with the "Great Apostolic Way" as he expredded it. The late Bishop G.B. Rowe, then pastor of Midway Tabernacle, convinced him of the authenticity of baptism in Jesus' Name, and the Baptism of the Holy Ghost to which he yeilded.

He continued to pursue the ministry in his newly found Apostolic faith, evangelizing locally at first, and later in other states. e pastored in Cleveland, Ohio, and was elevated to the Bishop Board of the Pentecostal Assemblies of the World in 1928. In later years when his health did not permit him to be an active bishop, he served in an honorary capacity. This seeming disadvantage caused him to develop with painstaking efforts his beautiful luminous charts. These visual presentations of the gospel are lasting memories in the hearts and minds of many saints, and exemplify the deep love he had for God's Word.

Bishop Lewis played a very significant role in the ranks of the Pentecostal Assemblies of the World in 1931. After Bishop Haywood's untimely death in 1931, the organization fell upon distressing times. During the General Convention held in Chigago in 1924, the majority of the white brethren conscientiously pulled out of the organization due to a parade of inexcusable reasons.

Most of the issues at hand were racially oriented. Although there were Jim Crow laws that effected many of the black brethren from freely traveling throughout the South, an assortment of excuses began to surface as to why some of the white brethren could not remain in the P.A.W. One of which was the complaint over Elder Haywood's signature appearing on their credentials as the General Secretary. 

Some felt that it was a hinderance for them to carry their fellowship cards with a black man's signature on it. This is a sad page in the past history of the Pentecostal Assemblies of the World. A page that nearly destroyed the entire organization. Bishop Lewis with Bishop F.I. Douglas, and Bishop Samuel Grimes held the organization together while the greater part of the brethren attempted the merger with the Apostolic Church of Jesus Christ to form the Pentecostal Assemblies of Jesus Christ.

After a long and fruitful  ministry, Bishop A. William Lewis went home to be with the Lord. Final rites were held in Sana Ana, California, Tuesday, October 30, 1973, with Bishop Frank R. Bowdan officiating. Although his trophies were laid down, he now awaits that glorious day when he shall exchange that old redemptive cross for his crown. Audio and Video Recordings of Bishop Lewis are available in our Audio Library.


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