Midlands Bishop Pioneer to the Black community dies age 91

Bishop DR Joshua Emmanuel Brooks, pastor of the Mt Peniel Church Apostolic Church Stafford came from Keith Hall St Catherine Jamaica to Dudley in 1956, and left to go to Stafford from Dudley in 1957.

He became one of the first African Caribbean residents and Landlords in Stafford for the first immigrants from Jamaica, Nigeria, Ghana, Zimbabwe and the Caribbean. He fed the homeless, taught many people to drive for free, taught others to read, and drove people to social events. He also captained and served the local Caribbean cricket club, holding the position of club secretary, and travelled the country playing for the team. He was a man of the community, loved to socialise and help the needy.

In 1964 he became a Christian, being one of the first from the Black community to openly accept Christ. In his conversion, he became a passionate believer and by 1966 he was ordained the Pastor of Stafford’s first Black majority church.

His passion didn’t stop there, the church in Stafford grew, and people came from all over the Midlands, Stone, Stoke-on-Trent, Wolverhampton, Birmingham and Walsall. With this growth, he planted churches in Wolverhampton, Birmingham, Stoke-on-Trent, London and Florida.

Bishop Brooks worked with the local Mayors and Members of Parliament, and he regularly lectured at the Blessed William Howard High School in Stafford, Staffordshire University and Stafford College. His ministry helped prisoners turn their lives around in Drake Hall Prison Eccleshall, Stafford Prison and Winson Green Prison Birmingham. He worked with people in Handsworth, Saltley, Ladywood, Nechells, and Aston.

He was a major influence on the late Black Birmingham lawyer Geoff Atkinson, and his parents family, he is the father and the main reason why Bishop Melvin Brooks came to Birmingham to work in Aston with the  Senior Pastor of the New Jerusalem Church Aston.

Bishop Brooks and his wife of 62 years, Mrs Catherine Rebecca Brooks, had 10 children together, one sadly passed away in 2017. His Legacy produced hundreds of Pastors and Missionaries around the world.

As well as his wife, Bishop Brooks is survived by 4 sons who are entrepreneurs, two daughters who are Church Ministers, two sons who are Pastors, and grandchildren who have become established musicians, singers, business people and sportsmen.

Bishop Dr Joshua Emmanuel Brooks will be buried on Friday 20th November 2020 in Stafford. His funeral procession will be starting at 9.30am from County Road to Marston road, then to Rowley Street for 10am. The procession will leave Rowley Street @ 12noon to Stone Road, to Beaconside, then on to Weston Road for his internment.

The Brooks family would like to thank everyone from around the world for their kind words, and ask that when lining the route, people comply with COVID 19 social distancing rules and guidlines, including wearing a mask.

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