Cardinal DiNardo’s statement on the passing of Rev. William “Bill” Lawson

May 14, 2024

On May 14, Daniel Cardinal DiNardo, Archbishop of the Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston, released this statement on the passing of Rev. William “Bill” Lawson:

“This morning, we were saddened to hear of the passing of Rev. William “Bill” Lawson. 

Rev. Lawson was a remarkable and beloved Pastor in the local Houston community. Along with Rabbi Samuel Karff and Archbishop Joseph Fiorenza, Rev. Lawson was a champion of civil rights and a bold preacher of God’s love in action. His great love for the Gospel of Jesus Christ, and his dedication to the Word of God, made him a credible witness to the power of God’s reconciling love for all people.

On behalf of the faithful of the Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston, I extended my deepest sympathy and prayers to the family of Rev. Lawson. 

May he rest in the peace of the God he served so well.”


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‘Three Amigos’ reunite for Juneteenth civil rights discussion, commemoration

​(July 14, 2020) — Longtime Houston faith and civil rights leaders Rabbi Emeritus Samuel Karff of Congregation Beth Israel, and Reverend William Lawson, Pastor Emeritus of Wheeler Avenue Baptist Church in Houston, joined Archbishop Emeritus Joseph A. Fiorenza for a frank discussion on justice, equality and respect.

Held on Juneteenth, June 19, 2020, a holiday commemorating the ending of slavery in the U.S., the three shared their lengthy experience of working to end injustices and to “respect thy neighbor” as part of the “The Dialogue Project: Vital Conversations with our Community – Fighting for Justice, Equality and Respect” held at the Interfaith Ministries of Greater Houston’s (IMGH) Brigitte & Bashar Kalai Plaza of Respect in Houston.

Hosted by IMGH’s Sucre Woodley, the three men shared their history in Houston “marching, preaching, protesting, teaching and influencing altogether for civil rights and all for justice for all.”

Affectionately called the “Three Amigos,” the trio met during a coalition meeting of “Ministers of Houston,” an ecumenical coalition group that sought to unite Houston’s diverse faith leaders and communities. Much of the group’s efforts led to “long-lasting systemic change for good right there as a very early result of this friendship and this relationship” between them, Woodley said.

Archbishop Fiorenza said they had a shared interest “in trying to bring justice for all in our city and our state and our country” and were inspired by Martin Luther King Jr. | Read more