Breaking news: Sixth Avenue Baptist Church pastor passes

Dr. Michael Johnson, pastor of Sixth Avenue Baptist Church, passed away. Friends shared that his death was due to COVID-19.

Dr. Johnson, a 1981 graduate of Booker T. Washington High School, had served as pastor of Sixth Avenue since 1988.

He completed his general studies at Florida State University. He received a Bachelor of Arts degree, Magna Cum Laude, from Morehouse College in Atlanta, Georgia, and Master of Divinity, Magna Cum Laude, and Doctor of Ministry degrees from The School of Theology, Virginia Union University in Richmond Virginia.

I got to know him when he served as president of the local NAACP and  the Baptist Ministers Union.

He also served on the State Board of Directors of One Church One Child, and President of the District Congress of Christian Education, Dean of the Florida Baptist State Congress of Christian Education, President of the Florida General Baptist Congress of Christian Education, Director of the Florida Baptist STVU Center For Continuing Education, Director of the Spirit of Timothy, Young Pastors and Ministers Ministry of the National Baptist Convention and a member of many other local boards.

Dr. Johnson received numerous awards and honors, including Outstanding Young Men of America, The D.C. Rice Scholar, The Omega’s Citizen of the Year, The Chappie James Award in Community Service, G. Jackson Award in Religion. The city honored him by naming the Michael J. Johnson, Sr. Housing Development after him.

Our condolences and prayers go out to his family, friends and congregation. He will be missed.




2 thoughts on “Breaking news: Sixth Avenue Baptist Church pastor passes

  1. Sorry for the back-to-back Rick, but I did poorly in not also recognizing the City Council and thanking them for their unanimous support of mandatory masks, and their resolution asking the County to wake up. That comes of me being in the unincorporated County and looking through that lens, but I shouldn’t have forgotten their efforts even momentarily.

    Thanks and recognition to all those councilpeople and most recently Chairwoman Cannada-Wynn, whose reasoned urging that the County finally start working with the City to stem covid was ignored by the BOCC at Thursday’s meeting.

  2. We are so grieved to hear of tragic and unnecessary loss.

    On the heels of the Rich family losing three people to covid in less than a week. And prisoners begging to be tested with Janice Gilley so far ignoring the BOCC’s call to test anybody who requests one in our prison system. Nurses flying in by the dozens to try to shore up our flagging hospitals with their administrators failing to attend the last BOCC meeting and demand that the concerns in their most recent letter were addressed publicly.

    On top of the pain of losing loved ones, families mourning them have to suffer the no mask fools crowing about their personal liberty and insisting that covid is just another flu. With so many of that segment being deeply rooted in, and motivated by, absurd conspiracy theories–while a lot of them don’t even recognize that they are.

    Self-deception and willful ignorance is always a deadly combination, but particularly so during a pandemic.

    When will it be enough precious souls lost? When will the prisoners matter and be considered as human beings? How many people have to die or suffer lifelong health consequences?

    I’m starting to wonder if there will ever be a point now where the alt right cult beliefs will be overturned in a segment of our population. On a federal and state level, the program seems to be to the appalling plan of inuring Americans and Floridians to suffering and death. Will Escambia County fall prey to this mentality also?

    So far, we have two local elected leaders and one appointed administrator who are willing and trying to help the residents of this County in the face of this pandemic: Commissioner May, Mayor Robinson, and City Administrator Keith Wilkins.

    Will anyone else step up? And when? What sign, number, or loss are they waiting for?

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