Entry #008 Bishop Barbara Ward Farmer
In honor of Black History Month, we recognize all African American Gospel Artist who are living legends, and who are used by God as musical warriors to destroy the works of darkness.
Bishop Barbara Ward Farmer was raised in Philadelphia, and graduated from South Philadelphia High School. She attended West Chester University where she started the first gospel choir. This choir still performs today, and is an active part of the college’s music program. The second of six children born to Bishop Lillian Ward and Elder Edward Ward Sr., Bishop Farmer is a daughter, wife, mother, grandmother, teacher, counselor, elder, composer and minister of music. She was baptized at age 7 in the Delaware River, and received the Holy Ghost at age 11 under the late Bishop L. Colene Williams of Holy Temple Church of the Living God in Penn Grove, New Jersey.
After graduating from college, Bishop Farmer began teaching at the Wagner Junior High School in Philadelphia. She started the Wagner Junior High School Gospel Choir, singing directing and composing music. Under her leadership, the choir sang throughout Philadelphia, Washington DC, and many cities along the east cost. This pioneering effort later opened the door for many other junior high and high school to have gospel music in their curriculum. In 1977, Bishop Farmer and the graduates of Wagner Junior High School Gospel Choir formed the “Wagner Alumni Gospel Choir which made many recording.
In 1972 and 1974 Bishop Farmer was called to preach her trial sermon. She was ordained as an Evangelist in the Church of the Living God by the late Bis. Arthur Lee Warren. She was ordained an Elder and served as Junior Bishop of Faith Tabernacle Church of the Living God, under her mother Bishop Lillian Ward. In January 1995 she was installed as Bishop there, and currently serves as Liaison Bishop for Music Dept., usher Board, and the Allied health Unit of the Churches of the Living God, Inc. Continuing her education, she attended Rowan College majoring in theological studies. Bishop Farmer is Co-Founder and Director of the LaBar Kids’ Center Pre-school, and is the proud wife of over 39 years to Trustee Lawrence Farmer; Sr. She has four children and four grand children.
Bishop Farmer is in great demand nationally and internationally, sing and preaching the gospel of Jesus Christ. Many God continue to bless and keep this modern day Renaissance woman as she helps to built God’s kingdom.