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Featured Preaching Woman

Bishop Candidate, Dr. Bertha Greene

As the Organizer and Senior Pastor of the Sacred Zion Full Gospel Baptist Church (FGBC) in Baltimore, MD, Dr. Greene is one of the most beloved pastors in the city as well as in the Full Gospel Baptist Church Fellowship. Having impacted many lives throughout her tenure in ministry, Dr. Greene is potently anointed to preach and teach the word of God with love, compassion, and practicality. As a member of the Full Gospel Baptist Church Fellowship, State of Maryland since 1996, Dr. Greene has held several offices in the Fellowship such as: Director of the Ministerial Alliance for Maryland Full Gospel Baptist Church Fellowship; District Overseer for Baltimore City (September, 2007); installed as State Overseer for the State of Maryland in November 2008. In November 2010, State Overseer, Dr. Bertha Greene was elevated to Bishop Candidate and is currently undergoing Episcopacy training.

Pastor Kim A. DavisBishop Candidate, Dr. Bertha Greene: "The Fallen Shall Be Raised To Stand!"

Written by Nichelle Early, Chief Executive Editor


Every day, life lends us examples of people who have fallen on hard times.  Some of those hardships may be financial, perhaps some are health related; maybe some of them are spiritual. Whatever the case, it is evident that there are so many people who are experiencing major challenges in their lives. Coupled with those challenges is the fact that many have fallen and they just don't know how to get back up again.  So, the question is, how do we respond? What can we, or do we do, especially as ministers of the gospel assist them?

Although rarely highlighted as one of the paramount ministries of the body of Christ, the ministry of intervention is so very vital in this hour.  PreachingWoman.com's founder enjoyed the privilege of speaking one on one with the incomparable Bishop Candidate Dr. Bertha Greene (Dr. Greene).  She graciously accepted our invitation to be featured on PreachingWoman.com and share with us her mission to see "The Fallen Raised to Stand."

As the Organizer and Senior Pastor of the Sacred Zion Full Gospel Baptist Church (FGBC) in Baltimore, MD, Dr. Greene is one of the most beloved pastors in the city as well as in the Full Gospel Baptist Church Fellowship.  Having impacted many lives throughout her tenure in ministry, Dr. Greene is potently anointed to preach and teach the word of God with love, compassion, and practicality.  Known for her exceptional wisdom, intelligence, loving-kindness, and candor, her gifted ministry has afforded her numerous opportunities to minister throughout the United States and Africa.

As a proponent of the vision, work, and ministry of the Full Gospel International Fellowship founded and organized by the International Presiding Bishop, Bishop Paul S. Morton, Dr. Greene's church, (Sacred Zion (FGBC)) was the first church to be organized in the State of Maryland as a Full Gospel Baptist Church. Having been a member of the Full Gospel Baptist Church Fellowship, State of Maryland since 1996, Dr. Greene has held several offices in the Fellowship such as: Director of the Ministerial Alliance for Maryland Full Gospel Baptist Church Fellowship; District Overseer for Baltimore City (September, 2007); installed as State Overseer for the State of Maryland in November 2008.  In November 2010, State Overseer, Dr. Bertha Greene was elevated to Bishop Candidate and is currently undergoing Episcopacy training.  

Despite the seemingly quick elevation within the FGBC and all of the many feats that God has accomplished in her ministry and personal life, Dr. Greene will be the first to emphatically tell you that it is God who has raised her to stand for such a time as this, and that she desires that all people know that regardless of what has happened in their lives, they too can stand!  

Dr. Greene (BG) and PreachingWoman.com's founder, Rev. Nichelle Early (NE) enjoyed a fruitful conversation during their interview and we are excited t to share it with you!

NE: Dr. Greene, thank you so much for accepting this interview. I'm so honored to celebrate and feature you and your dynamic ministry on PreachingWoman.com.

BG: Thank you so much dear! I'm glad that the Lord allowed us to meet and connect for such a  time as this.

NE: Dr. Greene, your ministry theme or mantra, if you will is, "Where The Fallen Shall Be Raised to Stand." Can you please share with us the intended message behind that theme?

Dr. Bertha GreeneBG: Yes. When I started the ministry, my staff and I were going over some scriptures and the scripture Isaiah 61 initially came to our thoughts, because that scripture truly outlined the kind of ministry we believed God wanted us to have. However, as  we continued to pray and go over the scriptures, one of the ministers sitting at the table offered  the scripture Psalm 45:14 which says, "The LORD upholdeth all that fall, and raiseth up all [those that be] bowed down." And, that scripture confirmed exactly what we believed our mission was. So, when we wrote out our theme, based upon our scripture, we initially came up with, "the fallen shall be raised." However, your theme makes a statement about your ministry, so I asked the question, "What happens after they are raised?" The impact and the results of your ministry are important. We knew God called us to help the fallen be raised, but what happens after that?

NE: Wow! That is a great question...

BG: Yes it is. You see Nichelle, many people are experiencing challenges. Everybody has gone through something. It could be that they are emotionally scarred, it could perhaps be mental, financial, or physical challenges; however, whatever people are going through, all of these bring some type of burden on a person. And therefore, I believe that it is my responsibility, as the shepherd of the ministry, to lead people to God, and God will "raise them up to stand." There is no place that you can fall that God cannot raise you up to stand! I don't care what happens in your life, God can raise you to stand! And so it is important that you have a ministry environment where people can be honest about where they are.  You can't help a person, if you don't know what's going on with them and where they are! So, when it was all said and done, God allowed our ministry mission and theme to be, "The Fallen Shall Be Raised to Stand!"

NE: Wow, Dr. Greene, that is so powerful! And, I also appreciate the process that you all undertook to get your ministry theme. You didn't just pick something because it sounded good. You allowed God to speak through His word and it's evident, because your ministry has truly been and still is a safe-haven for many people who have fallen, and have been raised to stand!

One of the evidences of this is that your ministry has a strong focus on evangelism via intervention services. Please talk to us regarding the importance of community intervention services being integrated in ministry.

BG: I believe that the church should be a healing station for people to be made whole. When I stared the church back in 1996, HIV/AIDS was on the rise.  And to be transparent, I had a son that was HIV positive. So while I was walking through that with him, going with him to his doctor's appointments and treatments, God gave me a passion for others who were HIV positive. Therefore, I began to research and we went through the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) to incorporate intervention services within our ministry to be able to reach out and help others in the community with HIV/AIDS and other diseases. The CDC then allowed us to add the spiritual component to the outreach component and this became a major part of our ministry and outreach initiatives.

NE: To God be the glory! That is so awesome and it is so needed in the body of Christ. This truly is a reflection of what God has called you to do, because certainly, people with HIV/AIDS or any disease or condition for that matter, may feel as though they are fallen, but your ministry uses them to help them know through Christ Jesus that they can stand again!

BG: That's right!

NE: So Dr. Greene, on a different note, let's talk about your membership in the FGBC Fellowship of churches...God seems to have elevated you very quickly through the various positions within the organization. Knowing of course it being the will of God, to what principles, qualities, leadership ability, etc. do you also attribute this rise?

BG: Well, let me start from the beginning!  After accepting the call as pastor, one morning I was watching TV and I saw Bishop Paul S. Morton.  Now, I had been exposed to the gifts of the spirit however, I had been in a traditional Baptist Church. And, at that time, I was trying to figure out how to blend to the two together. And shortly after seeing Bishop Morton on television, Bishop Oscar Brown was holding state meetings in Baltimore, MD. I started going to the meetings and Bishop Paul S. Morton was there and I had an opportunity to experience his ministry. And as I observed his ministry, I believed that he was led by God, that he was God centered, God fearing, and that he was a visionary. And, later, because of my experience during those meetings, I decided to join the FGBC Fellowship. On account of this, upon me joining my church into the fellowship, it was easy for me to be loyal, accountable, and responsible in the assignments I was given. Also, I am a person of integrity. So, integrity coupled with the other characteristics I mentioned is very important, and I attribute them in addition to being in God's will for what He's allowed me to accomplish.

NE: What encouragement do you offer to women who feel that they have been serving for a long time, but have not had an opportunity to move forward in their respective organizations?

BG: If you want to get ahead in your organization, or in anything for that matter, you must be God centered. That is first and foremost. You must know that it is God's will for you to do whatever it is that you are aspiring to do. You also must do everything that you are assigned to do, because this is how you get experience. Sometimes, as it pertains to elevation, you u may think that you are ready, but you may not have the experience necessary to uphold the position. Or, it may not be the timing of the Lord, if you have not already realized the position you desire... Always remember, elevation comes from God.  I have never sought after an elevation. Every assignment and everything that I did was unto the Lord...

Bishop Candidate Dr. Bertha GreeneSo, my encouragement would be this:

Whatever assignment you are given, seek God as to how to do it best.

Seek God as to how to glorify Him best.

And always remember, there is one spirit. If you are glorifying God in all that you do, someone will notice what you are doing as unto the Lord.

Therefore, since elevations come from God, we need to be pleasing God and not man!

NE: Oooh, Dr. Greene! Amen to that!

Now while staying in this same vein, what three principles can you offer to women who believe they are called to serve in leadership roles within the body of Christ?

BG: Well, I believe the following principles have helped me along the way:

Again, you must be a woman of integrity.

Always be willing to prepare for God's assignment, no matter how big or small you may think it is.

Show yourself to be responsible and dependable.

And, I will add and additional point, "Say what you mean and mean what you say!"

NE: Amen! I love this good out right wisdom, because these are principles that many of us have gotten away from at times...

Well, let's talk about your elevation to Bishop Candidacy in the FGBC. Please tell us about how you found out and how you feel now?

BG: Well, to be honest Nichelle, I had mixed emotions. I honestly didn't know what all it entailed. And so that was the first thing for me is that when I was asked, I really wanted to know what it meant in the FGBC and what all it entailed.  Because, I don't have a "spirit of entitlement" to think that I was ready to be a Bishop, so for me it was one of the most humbling moments of my life to have been considered and asked [by my Regional Bishop]. I had no clue that he would ask me, it truly caught me off guard. In fact, each assignment in the FGBC that I have been asked to hold were all surprise because I've never asked for any of them...Right now, I'm still in training and it has humbled me the more.

NE: Well, here's the big question: What response do you offer to those who do not believe women should be Bishops?

BG: Well, again, elevations come from God. I did not ask to be a Bishop. So, I trust that those who asked me and approved me, that they heard from God. In addition, I sought God for myself to satisfy this question within me, because the thing that I struggled with is that I could not be the "husband of one wife" as the scripture says. But, God gave me Joel 2:28 which says, "And it shall come to pass afterward, that I will pour out my spirit upon all flesh; and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your old men shall dream dreams, your young men shall see visions:"  And God took me to Galatians 3:28, which says, There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus.

All and all, I believe that God ordained me to carry out all of the responsibilities of a pastor and now I believe He has ordained me to carry out all the responsibilities of the Office of Bishop.

NE: May God continue to bless you as He's been blessing you thus far in all that you are doing for the Kingdom...

By Dr. Bertha GreeneOn a different note, let's please talk about your book, From the Cradle to the Pulpit.

BG: Well, one year in February, during Black History month, Holy Spirit led me to share my life's story while I was preaching.  And while I was speaking, I stood in the pulpit and said I was going to write a book detailing from my birth to now being a pastor. Now, one thing about me, if I stand in that pulpit and say something, I am determined to follow it through. So, I wrote the book. And, Nichelle, I tell you, so much healing came for me, because I walked back through my entire life, the good, the bad and the indifferent. It was at the point that I realized that God was shaping and molding me for my assignment all along. And even now, what it has done for me is that it has made me even more transparent because I already put it in the book! {laughs}

NE: Accordingly, one of the core focuses of your ministry is the necessity for people to be spiritually healed; what can you share regarding the importance of being spiritually healed?

BG: Well, first of all, because I have a desire to minister to hurting people, I realized early on that people who are hurt usually hurt other people if they haven't dealt with it.  They normally pass it on to others. And even during my MIT (ministers in training) Classes, we do an assessment called, "Search for Significance" where we walk through and talk about your past hurts and deal with them, because the last thing we need is someone preaching their pain in the pulpit. Ministers should offer hope and not pain; and I don't believe you can walk in your destiny until you have dealt with you hurts and have been spiritually healed. "Persons who have not been spiritually healed are emotional and physically driven, and that's dangerous!"

NE: Wow, I've never heard it put quite like that, and it's true!

Well, Dr. Greene, I know that you are very busy and you have a lot on your plate, so please share with us in closing what you believe God is saying in this hour.

BG: You know what? I think God is saying that we need to alert people that Jesus is soon to return, especially those of us who are preaching the Word of God.  We need to make sure that we are preaching for people to come to Jesus; and preaching for those who may have broken fellowship with Him and need to be drawn back to Him.

NE: I totally agree!

Dr. Greene holds a Bachelor of Science in Theology, Master of Divinity and Doctorate of Ministry from Family Bible College and Seminary in Baltimore, Maryland.              

Dr. Greene is a wife, mother, foster mother, grandmother, and great grandmother.  She and her husband, Chairman Deacon Emeritus Ronald W. Greene, Sr., stand side by side working in Gospel Ministry.  What you should know about Pastor Greene is that above all the titles, the positions she holds, the many accolades she receives-she is a Vessel with a servant's heart.  She takes the Call on her life very seriously and asks that you pray God will keep her focused on His Will.

Dr. Greene, what role does your family play as it pertains to your ministry?

BG: Well, I have a very close knit family. Some are serving with me and others are serving with other churches or various capacities. My Husband is my greatest supporter and confidant.  My sister, serves with me and is very dear to me. However, normally when something special comes up, all of us come together. The one thing I do know is that my family is very proud of me and of all that God has done in my life.

NE: Dr. Greene in closing, what is the one thing you would want the world to know about Dr. Bertha Greene?

BG: The one thing I want the world to know is that I bless God that He saw fit to use me for such a time as this. I'm very serious about ministry and I pray that God always keep me focus on His will. God has a purpose and a plan, and I don't want to mess it up!

NE: Bishop Candidate Greene, I respectfully thank you for accepting this interview and I appreciate you all that you are to me and to the Kingdom!

BG: Nichelle, thank you! I'm privileged and honored that you chose to feature me!