While largely unknown outside Illinois, the East St. Louis-based spiritual and community leader Bishop Dr. Henry Phillips Jr. is a unique personality. An outline of whose biography would feel like the idealized version of a responsible, active American citizen. And yet, his life is real, and as energetic as ever.
This February, Bishop Phillips will be celebrating the long overdue publication of his thoughtful work about marital relations, which has been in the works for over a decade.
Born Henry Phillips Jr., Bishop Phillips was born as the second of three children to a Black conservative family in East Saint Louis, Illinois. He was baptized into Pentecostal Christianity at an age of ten, thereafter devoting his life to the service of God and His flock.
Throughout his youth, Bishop Henry Phillips continued his theological studies and served his community in multiple capacities. In an official capacity, Bishop Phillips has been serving as the Police commissioner for Cahokia, Illinois, and rendering services as a member of the Illinois State Treasurer Advisory Team for years. He has been awarded the prestigious Catholic Servant Award for “Outstanding Community Service”.
But by far the most important aspect of his life is his unrelenting contribution to the Pentecostal tradition. He has held various posts ranging from an Adult Sunday School Teacher and Youth Ministry Coordinator, to his work as a Church musician. Coming a long way from being an Usher and Choir Director to becoming the State Minister of Music for the Illinois South East Jurisdiction of the Churches of God In Christ.
Bishop Phillips has studied courses at the Christian Life School of Theology (Atlanta), St. Louis Bible College (Missouri), and received his Doctorate at the Tabernacle Bible College and Seminary in Tampa, Florida.
In 1991, Bishop Phillips was united in marriage to Dr. Patricia M. Phillips (née Brewer), the seventh of eleven children born to another East St. Louis family. Together, the two founded the Power of Change Christian Church in 1994, which eventually spread to a second location in Mount Vernon, Illinois, and now reaches a congregation of over 1,200 people, predominantly but not exclusively African Americans by ethnicity.
Bishop Henry Phillips is a traditional Protestant who reject syncretism in favor of building a deeper bond with the Bible and Christ, the only Savior of mankind. He is currently serving as the president of Ecclesia Covenant Fellowship International, which operates in both the United States and across West Africa.
In keeping with his keen interest in his community, Dr. Phillips has also expanded his outlook and passion into other fields of social interest. While most notably receiving a number of certificates and working as a marital and human behavior counselor in recent years. His first and only work on the subject is finally about to come out after a decade of copious preparation.
It is entitled “When the Honeymoon is Over: Secrets to Rekindling the Fire & Keys to Fan the Flame in Your Marriage”. The book is expected to be released on Amazon on February 7, with a signing ceremony yet to be announced.