Pierre L. Williams

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Pierre L. Williams
Pierre L. Williams

Rev. Pierre Loomis. Williams is a native of St. Petersburg, Florida and joined the Marine Corps in 1965. He is a survivor of the Khe Shan siege.[1]

Religious career

Pierre Williams received his Bachelor of Arts degree from Eckerd College in St. Petersburg, and his Master of Divinity Degree from Virginia Union University in Richmond, Virginia. After being awarded the Master of Divinity degree, he also completed pastoral residency at Johns-Hopkins Hospital located in Baltimore, Maryland. He currently serves as Staff Chaplain at Harbor Hospital, Baltimore. He is an ordained minister in the African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church[2].

Fraud conviction

In late 1999, or early 2000, Pierre L. Williams, 52, of Baltimore, Maryland, pled guilty to defrauding the United States Department of Education by using false social security numbers in order to secure $29,500 in guaranteed student loans. Specifically, Williams pled guilty to one count of Student Assistance Fraud before the Honorable Thomas F. Hogan of the United States District Court for the District of Columbia. Williams, was scheduled to be sentenced on February 8, 2000 and faced up to five years in prison, a $250,000 fine and an order of restitution.

According the information provided to the court during today's hearing, Williams was pursuing a master's degree in divinity at the Wesley Theological Seminary at the time of the offense and in the fall of 1995, submitted an application for financial aid using his true social security number. Because he had previously defaulted on his college student loans in the 1980's, his financial aid application was denied. For the following academic year, he submitted a second financial aid application using a false social security number. The Office of Financial Assistance at Wesley Theological Seminary approved this application and processed the loans, In subsequent applications, Williams used two other social security numbers, both false, to secure additional loans. When officials at Wesley learned of the discrepancies and confronted the defendant, he initially denied having committed the fraud, but he eventually admitted his guilt in statements made to federal investigators and administrators at Wesley[3].

Activism

Pierre Williams is an "authority on federal equal opportunity and minority business enterprise programming". Formerly, he served as Equal Opportunity Officer and Manager of the Maryland Motor Vehicle Administration's Minority Business Enterprise Program. He is an active and contributing member of Baltimore United for Peace and Justice, the Phillip Berrigan Memorial Chapter of Veterans For Peace and the National Alliance For the Mentallly Ill, where he serves as a "community ambassador[4]."

Pierre has been awarded numerous awards for his advocacy for minority rights in the areas of housing discrimination and developing business opportunties for minority and women businesses. In Baltimore, he is particularly sensitive to the plight of homeless veterans.

On poverty

In 2002 Rev. Williams was named as the founder and executive director for the Sanctuary of Hope Homeless Outreach Program and the associate pastor of the New Zion Center of Hope UMC in Ellicott City.

He wrote an article for the Baltimore Washington Conference of the united methodist Church, entitled;""[5]

Poverty exists when people and institutions lack the resources they need to fulfill their God-given responsibilities. A person or family might not have money, but they may also lack skills, healthy habits and opportunities to succeed.
Poverty can never be a secondary concern for Christians because it strikes at the heart of what it means for people to be created in the image of God.
Poverty should not be reduced simply to a spiritual failure on the part of society. Deep spiritual problems manifest themselves in highly complex social structures. The starting point for a Christian understanding of these structures is the biblical message that God is the sovereign creator and sustainer of all things...
The church that Jesus founded is an extension of the Incarnation. It is through the churchs mission and ministry that Gods will is to be done on earth.
The ministry of Jesus is to be viewed as comprehensive and holistic. Jesus looked at the entire person and individual relationships with others. However, he also had a concern for human welfare that reached beyond the interpersonal to the systemic.

His was a public ministry. He opposed systems of power that were dehumanizing, and while his ministry included the least of these, he also challenged the greatest of these whenever humans were being mistreated. Following Jesus, we too are called to social, holistic ministry, such as the Bishops Initiative on Children and Poverty.

Obama volunteer

Leading Baltimore Communist Party USA member Tim Wheeler blogged January 26, 2008 from the Obama campaign in Columbia South Carolina[6];

It is chilly and threatening rain but the media is predicting a record voter turnout of people fired up by Obama's message of hope. I rode down from Baltimore on a bus with 40 other volunteers. It was chartered by three members of the Maryland General Assembly who have kept us working diligently since we arrived. Nights we sleep on the gymnasium floor of the Y, strewn with mostly youthful volunteers from as far away as California. Early this morning two more busloads arrived from Washington, D.C.
I have been canvassing with a friend, Rev. Pierre Williams, a United Methodist minister in Baltimore. We got a vivid feel for just how deeply Obama's message is resonating here going door-to-door in a working class neighborhood yesterday.

Williams also told British website Socialist Worker Online;[7]

‘My vote for Obama was a vote for a prayer that the US could transcend the politics of race and prejudice. As an African-American, I was nurtured under the doctrine of “separate but equal”.

My introduction to justice Florida-style involved seeing my father take an uncle down from a hanging tree.

While attending college, I joined the student movement for civil rights and ventured to Alabama and Mississippi, where I encountered the harshness of Southern police brutality and the fierceness of the police dogs.
Later as a soldier in Vietnam I was given the most dangerous assignment because of my race.
Now, as a religious campaigner active in the Communist Party and a volunteer for the Obama campaign, I am filled with both exhilaration and disbelief.
As I touched the voting screen on election day, my eyes welled up and a tear dropped. I was voting not only for myself – but for my grandparents and my mother and father, all of whom are now deceased.

I was also voting for the whites who stood with me in Alabama and the blacks who fought and died because they dared to believe that we could be free. I am proud of this “new day” – but I am also cautiously optimistic.
It is my prayer that progressives will now have more of an opportunity to present ideas for a new society.

This will be based on the fullest democracy in all spheres of human endeavor, where war and poverty are no longer required to ensure minority rule and plunder, where the full potential of everyone can and will be realized in the framework of a world of plenty – a society free from oppression and exploitation.’

America's Future Now

Williams attended the 2009 America's Future Now! conference.[8].

Veterans for Peace

As at 2009 and 2010, Pierre L. Williams served on the Board of Directors of Veterans for Peace.[9] Veterans for Peace is a member group of United for Peace & Justice and seeks to "protest the immoral and disastrous Iraq War and oppose our government's policy of permanent warfare and empire-building".[10]

Peace letter to Edwards

In May 2009, leaders of 23 Maryland-based organizations wrote to Rep. Donna Edwards (D-MD) thanking her for her “courage and foresight” in voting May 13th against the $96.7 billion supplemental for Iraq and Afghanistan.

The letter dated May 27th, and initiated by Baltimore United for Peace and Justice, commends Edwards, a freshman member of Congress for traveling to Afghanistan just before the vote “and observing first hand that there is no military solution to the crisis there.”

BUPJ is affiliated with United For Peace and Justice (UFPJ) which appealed this week to its affiliates to mobilize phone calls and visits to lawmakers offices urging them to vote “no” on final passage of the Iraq-Afghanistan Supplemental.

Signers included Jean Athey, leader of Peace Action, Montgomery County, Kevin Martin, National Executive Director, Peace Action, Jim Baldridge Vietnam Veterans Against the War, John Oliver, Baltimore Chapter, Veterans for Peace , Rev. Pierre L. Williams, VFP National Board Member, Rev. Heber Brown, III, Pastor, Pleasant Hope Baptist Church, Donna Blackwell, President, Winston-Govans Neighborhood Improvement Association, Gwen DuBois, Chesapeake Physicians for Social Responsibility, Diane Witter, founder, Chesapeake Citizen, Gary Gillespie, Director, Baltimore Urban Peace Program of the American Friends Service Committee, Andre Powell, AFSCME Delegate to the Baltimore Metro Council, AFL-CIO, Sister Carol Gilbert and Sister Ardeth Platte of the Jonah House Community, and Max Obuszewski, Pledge of Resistance Baltimore. [11]

Communist Party Religion Commission

In 2010, Pierre Williams was secretary of the Religion Commission of the Communist Party USA[12].

References

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