"a voice of one calling in the wilderness, 'Prepare the way for the Lord, make straight paths for him.'"
Pastor Helvius L. Thompson, a 45-year veteran Gospel Minister of the Seventh-day Adventist Church, and is currently the Senior Pastor of the Grace Temple Seventh-day Church in Fort Worth, Texas since 2006.
Born and reared in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, he began preaching as a child and accepted God’s call to the Gospel Ministry. He graduated from Oakwood College (now Oakwod University) in Huntsville, Alabama. He was then sponsored by the Southwest Region Conference to continue his ministerial studies at the Seventh-day Adventist Theological Seminary at Andrews University in Berrien Springs, Michigan.
In 1969, He began his ministerial work as the pastor of the Hebron S.D.A. Church in Houston, Texas. Later, he was appointed to be the youth pastor of the City Temple S.D.A. Church in Dallas, Texas. From there, he was sent to pastor the Alexandria-Monroe, Louisiana Church District, where he received the Pastor-of-the-Year Award for his outstanding church work and evangelism. He was ordained to the Gospel Ministry June 9, 1973 at the conference annual camp meeting.
He then became the pastor of the Grace Temple S.D.A. Church in Fort Worth, Texas. In 1974, he accepted a call from the South Atlantic Conference to pastor the Elim S.D.A. Church in St. Petersburg, Florida. There he led the congregation in the purchase of a new church facility.
In 1976, he accepted a call from the Central States Conference in Kansas City, Missouri to become the Conference Evangelist and Ministerial Secretary. His evangelistic work was so successful that he was invited to serve in the Mid-America Union Conference as a Union Evangelist and Associate Ministerial Secretary.
In 1981, he was elected to be the Union Associate Executive Secretary, but declined the position to continue his work in evangelism. After eight years of public evangelism in the central states area, he had conducted over 30 evangelistic crusade-seminars, baptized over 2,000 converts, and established a new church in Davenport, Iowa; a record for that area.
In 1984, Pastor Thompson returned to pastoral ministry, and accepted a call from the Southern California Conference to pastor the Tamarind Avenue S.D.A. Church in Compton, California. While there, he led out in remodeling and repairing the large church facility, developed an effective inner city ministry for the homeless and needy, helped to establish a Christian drug-rehabilitation home for women, and kept the church growing with constant evangelism.
In 1991, he returned to the Southwest Region Conference to pastor the City Temple S.D.A. Church in Dallas, Texas. Under his leadership, a new church school facility was built and the church sanctuary was remolded. Seeking to broaden his ministry, for five years he served as a Campus Minister for the Greater Dallas Community of Churches Campus Ministry, where ministered at the Mountain View, El Centro, and Cedar Valley Community Colleges.
In 1999, he became the pastor of the historic Ephesus S.D.A. Church in New Orleans, Louisiana, the fourth oldest African American Adventist Church in the nation. Under his leadership new church property was acquired, the church school was repaired and remolded, and he was there to lead his congregation through the Hurricane Katrina Disaster. In 2006, he was transferred to the Grace Temple S.D.A. Church. He was elected served as the Ministerial Director of the Southwest Region Conference from 2007 to 2011. He is the author and publisher of a book entitled, “The Handwritings of God, and is soon to publish a second book entitled “The Gospel of the Gardens.”
Pastor Thompson has preached in churches, camp meetings, and youth congresses throughout the United States. He has also preached in other countries such as London, England, Bermuda, The Bahamas, Tanzania, Africa, and Kenya, Africa. He has preached at Union College in Lincoln, Nebraska, Southwester Adventist University in Keene, Texas, and was the Sabbath Preacher for the 1998 Oakwood College Alumni Homecoming. He has served on the Southwest Region Conference Executive Committee, the Southwestern Union Executive Committee, and the North American Division Committee. He has been a delegate to the World General Conference Session in Toronto, Canada.
Pastor is married to the former Janice Kelley of New York, City for 45 years. She is a graduate of Fisk University in Nashville, Tennessee. She also holds a Master’s Degree in Music from the University of Missouri. She is currently a Music Elementary Teacher in Grand Prairie, Texas, and owns and operated the Jan’s Music and Tutoring Studio in Duncanville, Texas. They are the parents of three sons, Randolph, Russell, and Helvius III, and have four grandchildren.