“I would like to encourage women to be the best that they can be” – Carmen Stewart.
Her mother was a music teacher and her father a civil servant. She grew up in Kingston in a home with four brothers and sisters. When she was sixteen years of age, she began active evangelical work in her church.
But that did not stop her from attending University in the USA to learn all she could about public health and health education. On returning home she became a public servant and a Pastor. “I was fully occupied, very happy and completely fulfilled.”
When her husband died, she was left alone to manage the Pentecostal Tabernacle on Windward Road they had founded together. With her love for the poor and her dedication to nation building, Bishop Stewart soldiered on.
Today, her church has one of the biggest basic schools for children in Jamaica, a Golden Age Home for the elderly and the sick and a skills training centre for young persons so they can earn and income. “We train them to fish.”
Bishop Stewart was a woman of many talents. She was an educator, a minister of religion, a Justice of the Peace and the Custos Rotulorum of the parish of St. Andrew, the second woman in the history of Jamaica to hold this position. She was honoured by the government of Jamaica for her work in nation building with the award of Order of Jamaica (OJ), the country’s third highest honour, and up to the time of her passing in 2020, continued to give of her best to her country.
Bishop Carmen Stewart was a role model for young girls everywhere.
Role Model: A role model is someone whose example, or success can be matched or followed by others, especially by younger people.