After being honorably discharged in 1946, Williams used the G.I. Bill and enrolled in a joint Ph.D. degree program at Columbia University and Union Theological Seminary (across the street from each other in New York City). His war experiences had so drastically drained his faith that he determined never to be involved in any religious activity again. Fortunately the Lord had other plans, and Williams—unexpectantly on Easter morning 1947—had an overwhelming experience of the risen Christ that brought forth a fresh dedication to the Lord and His calling. A year and a half later, he met Jo, a student in a similar joint degree program on the M.A. level. They were married in August of 1949.
The newly married couple honeymooned and
then went directly to Beloit, Wisconsin, where Williams became the college
chaplain and taught Philosophy and Religion while his wife Jo taught
in a local elementary school. Three years later, though Williams
loved teaching and being chaplain, he left Beloit to pastor a large,
Presbyterian church in Rockford, Illinois. The seven year experience
was a blessing for both Williams and his wife. It was also the
time when their three children were born.
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