GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — Bishop Dennis J. McMurray of Renaissance Church of God in Christ has died, the church confirmed Wednesday.
McMurray, 63, was the senior pastor at Renaissance Church of God in Christ, which he established in 1992 with his wife and three children, according to his biography on the church’s website. The church did not say how he died.
McMurray was a “dynamic preacher and teacher of the gospel,” his biography reads.
The Muskegon Heights native served as an administrative assistant to the bishop of the Western Michigan Jurisdiction of the Church of God in Christ, ran seminars and was a motivational speaker.
Seven months ago, The Renaissance Church of God in Christ hosted the funeral of Patrick Lyoya, who was shot and killed by a Grand Rapids police officer.
“There’s never a good time for a time as this, but how many know that God is a very present help when we face troubled times,” McMurray said at Lyoya’s April funeral.
He emphasized looking to Jesus for justice.
“I looked at it from a Biblical perspective. A Biblical perspective means, look at the injustices that happened in the Bible centuries ago, those same injustices happened during the days of Jesus, those same injustices are happening now,” he said.
In October, McMurray was honored for his social activism and leadership for social change in the area with the GIANT among Giants award. He served on the Michigan Community Corrections Board, the National Board of Bethany Christian Services, Kent County Community Mental Health and Spectrum Health Executive Patient & Advisory Board. He was previously honored with the Religious Life GIANT Award and the Who’s Who Award in Black Grand Rapids by the Black Chamber of Commerce of Detroit.
McMurray has a wife and four children, according to his church biography. No funeral arrangements have been announced yet, the church said.