Pastor and First Lady Watkins

Pastor Gary Watkins Sr. is a dynamic leader, captivating speaker, and purpose driven visionary who serves as the senior pastor of the Greater St. Luke Church of God in Christ (COGIC). As a young child preaching in the bathroom mirror, it was no surprise that Pastor Watkins would succeed his late father, Pastor Charlie L. Watkins, in pastoring and spreading the good news to win souls.


Pastor Watkins accepted Jesus Christ as his Lord and Savior in 1972 and was ordained as an Elder in 1983. After overseeing Greater St. Luke for ten years while his father was ill, he officially became pastor in 1991. He currently serves as Superintendent of the Ithiel Clemmons District. He also serves as an Administrative Assistant under the leadership of Bishop George D. McKinney (General Board Member of the Church of God in Christ and Jurisdictional Prelate of  Southern California Second Ecclesiastical Jurisdiction). 

  Pastor Watkins is an advocate for the raw unadulterated Gospel and he is a firm believer in preaching the Word of God supported by the power of the Holy Ghost. Much like a steam locomotive, Pastor Watkins’ sermons start slowly but quickly gain momentum. Never resisting the excitement that the Word brings him, Pastor Gary presents his sermons and lessons with passion and fire each week. Always giving God the recognition for using him, our pastor remains humble and submissive to the direction of God for the church and for his life. Celebrating over 39 years in the ministry, he will be eager to tell you that he “will never doubt God, no matter what anybody says” and that the indestructible Word of God will forever remain a solid foundation on which he stands.   In 1983 Pastor Watkins married First Lady Teresa Page Watkins, who is lovingly known as “Sister T”. A supportive wife and mother, our first lady is the true depiction of a Proverbs 31 woman. She faithfully stands by her husband and has willingly made countless sacrifices to be sure the ministry goes forth with decency and truth. Throughout her Christian walk she served under the leadership of her late father, Superintendent Henry Page at the St. Paul COGIC as the purity teacher, financial secretary, choir director, and usher. She currently serves in the capacity of Sunday school teacher and the Women’s Department President. There is not a sermon preached where you won’t hear her praise and rejoicing roar out with gratefulness and thanksgiving. She is not shy of sharing the miraculous works the Lord has done in her life and her gracious heart shines bright as she leads the women of the church with zeal, alongside the pastor.  

Beyond the pulpit, these two “preachers kids” have their own “preachers kids”. They have lovingly raised four God fearing sons who have all completed their Masters programs in various fields. Along with their four sons came ten beautiful grandchildren.
Together, Pastor and First Lady Watkins are diligently devoted to the work of the Lord and the welfare of the congregation. With great anticipation they look forward to seeing what the Lord continues to have in store for the ministry.