FAITH IN FOCUS: From Homeless to Pastor at Jackson's 'Bread of L - WJTV News Channel 12

"And I ended up not having a place to go - living in a box on the street. This time of year when it was cold," Pastor Williams said.

FAITH IN FOCUS: From Homeless to Pastor at Jackson's 'Bread of Life'

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The choir at Bread of Life Bible Fellowship in Jackson has high energy during Sunday Service The choir at Bread of Life Bible Fellowship in Jackson has high energy during Sunday Service
Pastor Bernard Williams said he had an addiction to alcohol and other drugs and was, for a time, homeless. After turning his life over to God he's since become a church leader. Pastor Bernard Williams said he had an addiction to alcohol and other drugs and was, for a time, homeless. After turning his life over to God he's since become a church leader.
A wide variety of people attend Bread of Life Bible Fellowship in Jackson - a congregation that supports people going through rough times in their lives (like addiction and homelessness). A wide variety of people attend Bread of Life Bible Fellowship in Jackson - a congregation that supports people going through rough times in their lives (like addiction and homelessness).
Pastor Bernard Williams says he "understands the struggle" after being homeless. He tries to apply his life experience to his work at Bread of Life Bible Fellowship. Pastor Bernard Williams says he "understands the struggle" after being homeless. He tries to apply his life experience to his work at Bread of Life Bible Fellowship.
What moments have changed your life? Not just the meaning behind the cliche saying but a moment that your character - who you are - shifted because of something that you heard, saw, or experienced.

It's unclear how many people can truly say that.

But at Bread of Life Bible Fellowship in Jackson Senior Pastor Bernard Williams is not shy about sharing his past. He's putting "Faith in Focus".

Click here to watch last week's FAITH IN FOCUS: Healing with "Hot Coffee Hunts for Heroes"


An outsider might describe the congregation as patchwork - looking at the different people coming together at 'Bread of Life' to worship and pray with Pastor Williams at the building at 1850 South West Street.

And Pastor Williams is the first to admit that he started his life far from the seminary.

"I started drinking at an early age and by the time i was 13-years-old I was totally engulfed in alcohol. I had to have it everyday," Pastor Williams said.

Abandoning his home at a young age he moved from Glendora, Mississippi to Jackson after hitching a ride, he said.

But life did not improve.

"And I ended up not having a place to go - living in a box on the street. This time of year when it was cold," Pastor Williams said.

"And I turned to God and I said 'God, I am struggling just to survive. I am an addict. I can't stop doing drugs. I can't stop drinking. I need your help. If you would just set me free from this I promise i'll never go back into it again and I will give myself to you and you can use me to your glory'," Pastor Williams said.

"He took the desire away from me. He took the taste from me. And then he called me," Pastor Williams said.

"He called me," he repeated.

Now, more than a decade later, the congregation has clothing and food drive ministries which works with the people who are impoverished, addicted, or homeless.

Pastor Williams said the ministries became his mission after, "God called me in from the darkness".

"And that's why I have so much compassion now for the homeless people or people that I see that is in need because I've been there and I know the struggle," Pastor Williams said.

"That's the purpose of the church. Working together to build the lives of people that can't make it on their own. So we're actually our brother's keeper," Pastor Williams said.

If you'd like the viewers of NEWS CHANNEL 12 to learn more about your church community contact Jacob Kittilstad at jkittilstad@wjtv.com or 601-664-8839.

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