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Glide Memorial Church community remembers Rev. Cecil Williams

Members of the Glide Memorial Church came together Monday night to remember the life of church co-founder Rev. Cecil Williams. They’re vowing to push forward his legacy one day at a time. 

The pictures in front of the church pulpit provided a snapshot into Williams’ life. The San Francisco icon dedicated his life to serving the city’s community, and especially those in need. 

“The mood is disbelief right now,” said Glide’s minister of Celebration Marvin K. White. “But, as you can also see, the mood is also action, as well. Where do we need to be?”

White’s sentiment was shared by others in attendance grieving the loss of Williams.

“It’s just heartbreak, really, because this community is so centered around him” said church member Lily Levesque. 

“It was not something I was prepared to hear today,” said church board member Mary Glide. “But at the same time, I know he’ll always be with us.”

Glide’s work goes beyond Sunday sermons, being a beacon of hope for the Tenderloin community. It provides a wide range of social services and even prepares thousands of free meals every day. Every Thanksgiving Day, it serves more than two-thousand meals. 

Former San Francisco Mayor Willie Brown said Williams’ commitment to working with the Tenderloin community is why the church has been a success for decades. 

“Cecil, however, understood exactly how to make the church work with that group of people,” Brown said. “And for that group of people to work within the church.”

The church said Williams passed away at his home today, surrounded by family and friends. 

And as the congregation leaned on each other Monday night, they planned to honor Williams’ legacy by continuing to help those in need. 

“We know that there’s still somebody else coming,” White said. “So it was crack, then it was fentanyl. There’s still something beyond that we need to be ready for.”

Source: NBC Bay Area

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