Friends, congregants and community leaders will gather Saturday to pay tribute a Brevard bishop whose faith journey took him from a tent ministry to the airwaves and later the responsibility of overseeing a number of churches.
Bishop Leonard Weaver Sr., the founder, and pastor of Greater Faith Temple Church of God in Christ in Melbourne, died Oct. 30.
He was 85.
Weaver was born in 1934 and graduated from Monroe High School in Cocoa. He was baptized at age 13 and at 17 joined the Army and was stationed in Korea during the Korean War.
More: Homicide spike in Palm Bay rattles residents, prompts call for community action
Leonard returned stateside and began studying at Moody Bible Theological Seminary. At age 29, he began Faith Temple as a house church in Melbourne and later began building a church on a piece of property donated by his mother-in-law on Hickory Street.
At first, a tent was erected, with services held in the sweltering heat.
“Treat the people right,” and “do what is right,” he would be heard preaching, friends and family members noted.
In later years, Weaver joined Gov. Bob Graham’s Drug Task Force, and with his wife, Cleo Weaver, opened a food pantry. Weaver was ordained as a bishop of Florida’s 6th Ecclesiastical Jurisdiction.
Visitation will take place from 5 to 8 p.m. at Zion Orthodox Primitive Baptist Church in Cocoa. Funeral services will take place at 1 p.m. Saturday at Greater Faith Temple in Melbourne. He is survived by his wife, Mother Cleo R. Weaver, two daughters, and three sons.