Wilbur Choy

Bishop Wilbur Choy


Western Jurisdiction

cob_hs_choy-150x225.jpg Bishop Wilbur Choy was a retired Bishop of The United Methodist Church in which he served from 1972-1984. Bishop Choy passed on December 28, 2021.

Born in Stockton, California, Wilbur was the son of Lie Yen and Ida Lee Choy. Wilbur Choy attended Stockton Junior College (A.A.), the College of the Pacific (B.A.), and the Pacific School of Religion on (M. Div.). He holds honorary doctorates from the Pacific School of Religion and the University of Puget Sound.

On September 26, 1940, Wilbur Choy married Grace Ying Hom. They had four children: Randolph W., Jonathan W., Phyllis W. (Mrs. LeRoy Seibert), and Donnell W. Choy. Grace Choy died on December 26, 1977.

While a college and seminary student Wilbur Choy was associate pastor of the Chinese Methodist Church in Stockton and was ordained deacon in 1946 by Bishop James Baker. Following seminary Wilbur was ordained elder by Bishop Donald Tippett and joined the California -Oriental Provisional Conference, continuing to serve the church in Stockton.

In 1954 Wilbur Choy was appointed to serve St. Mark's Methodist Church, Stockton, in the California-Nevada Annual Conference and later he held pastorates in Woodland and Sacramento, California. In 1967 he was chaplain of the California Senate. From 1969 until his election to the episcopacy in 1972 by the Western Jurisdictional Conference, Wilbur Choy was District Superintendent of the Bay View District.

On December 29, 1982, Wilbur Choy married the Reverend Nancy S. Yamasaki, a United Methodist clergywoman.

As bishop, he served the Seattle Area for eight years and the San Francisco Area for four years. He was President of the Council of Bishops 1983-1984. He retired in 1984.