Announcement for Services of Dr. Herman W. Henning Jr

Council of Bishops
African Methodist Episcopal Church


On January 13, 1934, Dr. Herman W. Henning, Jr. was born in Memphis, Tennessee. On October 28, 2020, at age 86, he transitioned after a long sickness in Memphis, Tennessee.  He was the second child of seven children born to Rev. Dr. Herman William Henning, Sr., and Mrs. Mattie Elizabeth Henning.   He was the father of Loren E. Henning (Eric) of Oakland, California,  and Rev. Dr. Maria Williams Hawkins (Darrayl of Muncie, Indiana, and a special daughter, Fati Liamidi Bynum(Zerrick), and grandfather of four.  He was also married to Cynthia Curren Henning.   He is the oldest brother of former Supervisor Yvonne Henning Parks and Bishop Elizabeth Anne Henning Byfield. 

Early in life, he confessed a relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ. The son of an itinerant  African Methodist Episcopal Church pastor and missionary,  he was active in the Church and served in numerous positions at various local and conference levels. In his later years, he joined Metropolitan Baptist Church, with his wife where he taught Bible Class and served on the Security Team.   

He graduated from LeMoyne College, Memphis, Tennessee, received a Master’s Degree in Political Science from the University of Chicago, a Master’s Degree from Eastern Illinois University,  and a Ph.D. from the Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh Pennsylvania.  He was a member of the Alpha Phi Alpha fraternity. 

He taught History at Hirsch High School in Chicago, and he also taught at Howard University in the Journalism department.  He later became the dean in the Journalism department and worked with Tony Brown.  It was at Howard University that he was able to prepare for a childhood dream of governmental service.  Through the work, he did in African and Cultural Educational Systems, and with his ability to speak in multiple languages, particularly French, he was selected to serve at the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) as a Cultural Attaché and Diplomat.

He served the countries of  Morocco,  Cameroon,  Zaire (the Democratic Republic of the Congo),  Benin, and Namibia.  He had the rare distinction of serving one continent for the entirety of his career and having with him, his brother Bishop C. Garnett Henning, who was serving several countries in Africa as an AME Bishop.

In each country, he developed and implemented innovative programs, cultural uniqueness, sports programs, and self-help opportunities.  These innovative programs and partnerships have remained over the years sustaining enrichment programs, and supporting individuals.  One of the persons supported was Dikembe Mutombo a friend who was doing a documentary on Dr. Henning at the time of his sickness.

He had a keen sense of humor who made laughing a priority,  a quick wit, was a consummate photographer,  orator,  and loved sports and books. 

He is survived by his wife, Cynthia Curren Henning, his daughter, Rev. Dr. Maria Williams Hawkins (Darrayl),  son,  Loren Elliott Henning (Eric),  Fati Liamidi Bynum (Zerrick), grandchildren,  Karmin Hawkins, Nathan Ortley, Matteo Henning-Gerson, and Eden Rose Henning-Gerson, siblings Yvonne Henning Parks (Rev. Walter, deceased), Bishop E. Anne Henning Byfield (Ainsley),  sisters in love, Ernestine Lee Henning (widow of Bishop Cornal Garnett Henning), Anna Armita “Mita” Anderson Henning, (widow of  Rev. John Patrick Henning a special cousin, Charles Craig,  nieces, nephews, godchildren, extended family and friends who all loved him deeply.

Service Arrangements:  
R. S. Lewis and Sons Funeral Home 
2944 Walnut Grove Road, Memphis, Tennessee, 38111
Telephone 901 235.8169,  Fax 901 526.3265 

Visitation:  November 6, 2020:   4:00 pm-6:00 pm
R. S. Lewis and Sons Funeral Home 
2944 Walnut Grove Road, Memphis, Tennessee, 38111

Service:   November 7, 2020
Metropolitan Baptist Church
767 Walker Avenue, Memphis, TN 38126

Viewing:  10:00-11:00 am 

Omega Service:  Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity: 10:30 am

Funeral 11:00 am
Rev. Dr. Michael L.W. Moore, Pastor, Officiating
Bishop E. Anne Henning Byfield,  Eulogist

New Park Cemetery
4536 Horn Lake Rd, Memphis, TN 38109

Watch the Celebration of Life on: OR on RS Lewis Funeral Home Facebook’s page. 

Condolences may be sent to:
Rev. Dr. Maria Williams Hawkins at
Former Supervisor Yvonne Henning Parks at
Bishop Anne Henning Byfield at
Post Office Box 55106,  Indianapolis, IN 46205-0106

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