Bill Text: MS HC92 | 2010 | Regular Session | Enrolled

Bill Title: Drs. John M. and Vera Mae Perkins; commend upon the occasion of their 50th anniversary in the ministry.

Spectrum: Bipartisan Bill

Status: (Passed) 2010-04-23 - Enrolled Bill Signed [HC92 Detail]

Download: Mississippi-2010-HC92-Enrolled.html


2010 Regular Session

To: Rules

By: Representatives Holland, Gipson

House Concurrent Resolution 92

(As Adopted by House and Senate)


     WHEREAS, for 50 years, Dr. John M. and Dr. Vera Mae Perkins have devoted their lives to the ministry, spreading the gospel of Jesus Christ to a starving society through a holistic approach to ministry, a notable effort that will be commemorated with a Golden Anniversary celebration on June 10-12, 2010, in conjunction with the celebratory occasion of Dr. John's 80th birthday; and

     WHEREAS, the celebration, to consist of an art show and a banquet dinner benefiting the John and Vera Mae Perkins Foundation, promises to be a time of fellowship, reminiscing and commemorating the work of Dr. John M. and Dr. Vera Mae Perkins, as well as a time of discussion on the vision for the future of the couple's ministry; and

     WHEREAS, Dr. John M. Perkins, a sharecropper's son who grew up in New Hebron, Mississippi, amidst dire poverty in a family of bootleggers and gamblers, fled to California at the age of 17 to escape the racism that had directly affected his family and vowed never to return, but after converting to Christianity in 1960 returned to the South at the peak of the Civil Rights Movement to spread the gospel of Jesus Christ and became actively involved in the call to social activism; and

     WHEREAS, in the communities in which they settled after their June 14, 1951, marital unification, the Perkins were not only known as ministers of the gospel but as social activists and civil rights leaders, and after many years of voluminous contributions to a variety of communities, the John M. Perkins Foundation for Racial Reconciliation and Christian Community Development was established in 1983, and later renamed the John and Vera Mae Perkins Foundation; and

     WHEREAS, in 1972, Dr. John M. and Dr. Vera Mae Perkins founded Voice of Calvary Ministries in Mendenhall, Mississippi, which also led to the development of a church, health center, leadership development program, thrift store, low-income housing development and training center, and even grew to include other development projects in the satellite communities of Canton, New Hebron and Edwards; and

     WHEREAS, after returning to California in 1982, the Perkins founded Harambee Christian Family Center in Northwest Pasadena, a neighborhood that had one of the highest daytime crime rates in California, which today continues to operate by running numerous programs including after school tutoring, Good News Bible Clubs, an award-winning technology center, summer day camp, youth internship programs and a college scholarship program; and

     WHEREAS, in 1989, Dr. John M. Perkins called together a nationwide group of Christian leaders to work in America's poor communities at the grass-roots level, leading to the formation of the Christian Community Development Association, which has grown from 37 founding members to 6,800 individuals and 600 churches, ministries, institutions and businesses in more than 100 cities; and

     WHEREAS, in the fall of 1995, Dr. John founded the Harambee Preparatory School, an elementary school to provide a proper academic program for the children living in poverty-stricken homes to receive quality academic training in a secure and loving environment; and

     WHEREAS, a veteran of the Korean War, having served in Okinawa from 1951-1953, Dr. John M. Perkins has been awarded ten honorary doctorates from Wheaton College, Gordon College, Huntington College, Spring Arbor University, Geneva College, Northpark College, Whitworth College, Belhaven University, Seattle Pacific University and Nyack College; and

     WHEREAS, Dr. Vera Mae Perkins also received her honorary doctorate from Spring Arbor University; and

     WHEREAS, having served on 19 or more boards including the Board of Directors for World Vision, Prison Fellowship, National Association of Evangelicals (NAE), Covenant College and Spring Arbor University, Dr. John Perkins is a published author, with 11 books to his literary credit, including:  A Quiet Revolution, Let Justice Roll Down, With Justice For All, Beyond Charity, He's My Brother, Resurrecting Hope, A Time to Heal, Follow Me to Freedom and Welcoming Justice, and continues to serve as an international speaker and a teacher on issues of racial reconciliation, indigenous leadership development and community development; and

     WHEREAS, much to his credit for his transforming approach to social reconciliation, Seattle Pacific University has created the John Perkins Center for Reconciliation Leadership Training and Community Development and Patten University in Oakland, California, and has established a John Perkins Center for Christian Community Transformation; and

     WHEREAS, the Perkins are the proud parents of eight children, Spencer (deceased), Joanie, Phillip, Derick, Deborah, Wayne, Priscilla and Elizabeth; 13 grandchildren; and three great-grandchildren; and

     WHEREAS, it is the policy of this Legislature to honor the tirelessly devoted and selfless commitment of such inspirational and giving individuals as Dr. John M. and Dr. Vera Mae Perkins, whose lives are measured by increments of improving the life of others through spiritual investments and social change:

     NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED BY THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES OF THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI, THE SENATE CONCURRING THEREIN, That we do hereby commend Dr. John M. and Dr. Vera Mae Perkins as the founders of the John and Vera Mae Perkins Foundation on the occasions of their ministry's 50th anniversary and Dr. Perkins' 80th birthday, to be celebrated June 10-12, 2010, and extend our most heartfelt wishes for continued success in all of their future endeavors.

     BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, That copies of this resolution be furnished to Dr. John M. and Dr. Vera Mae Perkins, the Board of Directors of the John and Vera Mae Perkins Foundation and to the members of the Capitol Press Corps.