White Wing Messenger? - Church of God of Prophecy

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White Wing Messenger? - Church of God of Prophecy

Isn’t there something special about going

to your mailbox and finding a new issue of the

White Wing Messenger?

In each copy, you will find inspirational

articles from a diverse group of talented

writers, useful resources, event

announcements and summaries, and news

from states, regions, and areas around the

globe. It is a regular means of communication

that has proclaimed the Good News and

served the Church of God of Prophecy for

more than 87 years.

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2 WWM Pastors JUNE and church 2011 leaders, consider placing this page on your church bulletin board to use in your promotion of the White Wing Messenger.


Contents

June 2011 • Volume 87, Number 11

6 A Soul-Winning

Church

by John A. Stone

8 Building People

by Scott Lee

10 From the Community

to the World

by Clayton Endecott

13 What Makes a

Strong Local Church?

by W. E. DeGeer, Jr.

14 Strong Families

Make Strong Churches

by Larry Duncan

20 Youth Ministries: Converged at Emerge

w w w w

16 Encountering and

Handling Conflict

by H. E. Cardin

19 Is Your Church

Fiscally Fit?

by Jan Couch

26 It’s Not What I Do,

It’s Who I Am

by E. C. McKinley

Bringing honor to the WORD by the printed word, the White Wing Messenger

strives to inspire Christian thought and practice as it imparts the “good news” of

the Gospel while serving the connectivity needs of our church community.

Visit us online—www.whitewingmessenger.org

White Wing Messenger Editorial Board: Londa Richardson, Chair; Daniel Chatham;

Hanny Vidal; Cervin McKinnon; Perry Horner; Tapio Sätilä; Shaun McKinley; and Adrian Varlack

Executive Editor/Publisher: R. E. Howard, Managing Editor: DeWayne Hamby, Copy Editor: Elizabeth Witt,

Editorial Assistant: Pamela Praniuk, Graphic Artists: Perry Horner and Sixto Ramirez,

International Offices (423) 559-5100, and Subscriptions (423) 559-5114

Please submit all material to the White Wing Messenger; Managing Editor; P. O. Box 2910;

Cleveland, TN 37320-2910; phone (423) 559-5128; e-mail us at Editorial@cogop.org.

The White Wing Messenger is the official publication of the Church of God of Prophecy.

FEATURES CALENDAR OF EVENTS

EDITORIALS

MINISTRIES UPDATES

22 Children’s Ministries: Children Bring

Strength to the Local Church

25 Women’s Ministries: European

Area-Wide Ladies Retreat

4 Facing Forward:

The Primacy of the Local Church

by Randall E. Howard

31 Messages:

A Beggar in the King’s Court

by DeWayne Hamby

5 News: Here & There

28 Local/State/International News

In His Presence • New Churches

Upcoming Events

June 3–5, 2011

Caribbean Ladies Retreat

St. Martin

June 9–12, 2011

CBL School of Practical &

Advanced Studies III

SE Spanish Region – Florida

June 11, 2011

Heritage Day

Fields of the Wood

Murphy, North Carolina

June 12, 2011

“Lead On, Holy Spirit”

Heritage Ministries Simulcast

Cleveland, Tennessee

June 16–19, 2011

CBL School of Practical &

Advanced Studies II

SE Spanish Region – Georgia

June 22–25, 2011

Youth Harvest Training

Barranquilla, Colombia

www.operationomega.org

June 23–July 4, 2011

International Institute of

Children’s Ministry

Rousse, Bulgaria

children.cogop.org

September 8–11, 2011

CBL School of Practical &

Advanced Studies III

SE Spanish Region – Kentucky

White Wing Messenger (ISSN 0043-5007) (USPS 683-020) is published

monthly as the official publication of the Church of God of Prophecy, 3750

Keith St NW, Cleveland, TN. Send all materials for publication to Editorial

Department; PO Box 2910, Cleveland, TN 37320-2910; e-mail: editorial@cogop.

org, fax: (423) 559-5121. For subscription rates, visit wwm.cogop.org; call

(423) 559-5114; e-mail: subscriptions@cogop.org. Subscription rate: $18.00

per year, payable to White Wing Messenger by check, draft, or money order.

Periodical postage paid at Cleveland, TN 37311 and at additional mail office.

Donations for the White Wing Messenger may be sent to the above address.

All scripture references are from the King James Version unless otherwise

indicated. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to White Wing Messenger,

PO Box 2910, Cleveland, TN 37320-2910.

WWM JUNE 2011 3


The church is

nothing less

than God’s

strategy for

covering the

earth with

His Gospel

and building

His Kingdom

on earth.

4 WWM JUNE 2011

The Primacy of the Local Church

When Paul described the church to

Timothy, he used some lofty and farreaching

language: “. . . the household of

faith, the church of the living God, and the

pillar and ground of the truth” (1 Timothy

3:15). I believe that Paul used these words

because he understood the vital role God

had in mind for the local church in His

eternal plan. The church is nothing less

than God’s strategy for covering the earth

with His Gospel and building His Kingdom

on earth. The church is the presence

of Christ in the world to do the work of

Christ, transforming life and culture to

His will.

There is one facet that is primary to

this purpose; it is the local church. There

we find a community of faith where

believers gather to nurture one another in

the life of Christ while they invite others

to join the family and experience that life.

Being a local church is not easy, but it is

the design of God where relating together

in Christ’s life and purpose as believers

and the “yet to become believers” has

the potential to deliver the world from

darkness. It is just that fantastic and

miraculous to be the body of Christ as a

local church. It is God’s vital key.

No other aspect of God’s Kingdom

has this potential without morphing

into some form of a community of

faith—in other words, a local church.

Denomination and movement centers

have their contributions to make and

can provide healthy infusions to the

local church so that their calling is made

more attainable. Serving accountability,

corporate synergy, mission, vision, and

leadership development are just a few

ways these centers contribute to the

success of the local church. Parachurch

ministries contribute with specific focus

ministry offerings for local churches

to select as they feel called, or as they

feel need. The range of their potential

contributions creates a wide spectrum of

specific ministry ranging from missions

to music and beyond. Still both of these

must understand that they cannot be

the church, but they contribute to the

empowerment of that primary facet of

the body, the local church.

I realize that when the average church

in North America is far less than 100

members, one begins to wonder if God

was thinking straight when He chose

this as His strategy. And we all would

admit that the plan does not seem to

be working at optimal level in so many

places and many times. Yet even in those

less-than-perfect settings, the genius of

the local church can be uncovered if one

looks closely. Believers relating together

to nurture and build up one another in

an environment of grace and love—now

that is powerful! And all of this is done in

the atmosphere of Christ’s presence. He

is there in His church. How many millions

are hurting in this world and would be

drawn to such a community if they only

could “taste and see” firsthand once?

Pastors and lay leaders, we offer this

issue in the hopes that local churches may

renew their realization of this high calling

and critical role to be played in God’s

eternal plan for the earth. As each of

these units, no matter how large or small,

reproduces faith, and even reproduces

themselves, God’s influence will saturate

cities, regions, and, ultimately, the world

as God has designed.

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The Global Growth of Islam

According to a January 2011 report from the Pew

Research Center’s Forum on Religion & Public Life,

the growth of the world’s Muslim population will

outpace the non-Muslim population by double in

the next two decades. The world’s non-Muslim

population is expected to rise at a rate of .7 percent

while the Muslim population will grow by 1.5

percent. It is expected that Muslims will make up

26.4 percent of the world’s expected 8.3 billion

population in 2030. One in every four people will

be Muslim.

The report also suggests that while the

Muslim growth will outpace the non-Muslim

growth, it will grow at a slower pace than

1990–2000, which was at a rate of 2.2 percent.

News continued on page 28

—Source: Pew Research Center’s Forum on Religion & Public Life

T. J. Eaves, rising senior at Western Carolina University, has been selected

by his classmates as the 2011–2012 Student Government President. T. J.

is a member at The ROC, Rockingham, North Carolina, Church of God of

Prophecy. According to a former Youth Director, Reeves “has always

been the life of the youth group. His

smile brings joy to everyone that he

comes in contact with.”

Heritage Day

Simulcast Happening June 12

—Pastor Steve Gilmer

Rockingham, North Carolina

COGOP Teen

Selected

as Student

Government

President

Following the “Pursuing His Spirit” Prayer Event Internet simulcast in January, Heritage Day celebrations in 2011 will be

concluded with a special “Lead On, Holy Spirit” simulcast on June 12. The event will feature historical footage from the

Church of God of Prophecy’s early days, a greeting from General Overseer Randall E. Howard, and a special message from

Church Historian Adrian Varlack.

On June 11, Heritage Day celebrations will take place at the Fields of the Wood Park in Murphy, North Carolina. The

annual celebration includes special singing and messages from Church leaders. Admission to the park is free. The simulcast

will take place the following evening at the Keith Street Church of God of Prophecy in Cleveland, Tennessee. Those who

aren’t able to join the celebration live are encouraged to use the Internet to broadcast to their homes and churches.

“We are excited to have this opportunity to use new technology to celebrate the Church’s rich heritage,” Bishop Howard

said. “The ‘Pursuing His Spirit’ simulcast was so successful, we thought this would be an excellent follow-up.”

To join the Heritage Day 2011 Simulcast, visit www.cogop.org.

WWM JUNE 2011 5


A Soul-Winning Church

T

Today’s church continues to cry out for God’s blessings, for we long to be led by the Holy Spirit and

experience spiritual and numerical growth. However, the question must be asked, “Why should God bless us

when we refuse to become what He has called us to be?” What concerns God is our effective ministry to the

hearts and minds of unsaved people, not our preferences, procedures, or programs.

We have strayed from our real purpose for existing; our existence is in fulfilling Jesus’ mission to reach the

lost. Our purpose is not in maintaining our churches, but, rather, to invade the world and save the perishing.

William Fay, the author of Share Jesus Without Fear, states, “. . . as few as five to ten percent of the people

in an average church have shared their faith in the past year . . . and one hundred thousand churches will

close their doors this decade.” 1 He goes on to say that the foundational reason for these sad statistics is the

choice church members make in choosing the sin of silence over being obedient to the call and mission

of Jesus.

We have forgotten our purpose as Christians, which is to become the disciples in Christ’s priestly prayer in

John 17:20–26 and in the Great Commission of Matthew 28:18–20. Jesus’ commandment to witness to the

unsaved is a constant theme throughout the New Testament. Dr. Jerry Pipes and Victor Lee state, “A verse-byverse

review of the words of Jesus in the four Gospels reveals at least 35 statements that could be understood

as statements of purpose.” 2 They give three of these passages as being central to His declaration: Luke 19:10,

John 18:37, and Matthew 20:28.

“For the Son of Man has come to seek and to save that which is lost” (Luke 19:10 NKJV, italics mine). In this

passage, there are two crucial elements of Jesus’ mission: the first is to seek, for Jesus sought after the lost by

coming to them in the flesh so they may receive the truth; and He came to save them from their sin, giving

them hope for eternal life.

“For this cause I was born, and for this cause I have come into the world, that I should bear witness to the

truth. Everyone who is of the truth hears My voice” (John 18:37 NKJV, italics mine). His statement, “for this

6 WWM JUNE 2011 WWW.WHITEWINGMESSENGER.ORG


cause,” leaves no doubt that this is a mission statement,

and it carries His central purpose to bear witness to

the truth.

“Just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but

to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many” (Matthew

20:28 NKJV, italics mine). When Jesus sought out the lost,

He did so to serve them. The primary way He served them

was to give His perfect life for the sinful lives of humanity

as a ransom for as many as would believe on Him.

It’s clear that the Evangelists of the New Testament

Gospels understood the importance of Christ’s mission,

and clearly they wanted you and I to understand this

importance as well. The Great Commission is clearly found

in five places, not by chance, in each of the Gospels and

the Book of Acts. 3 In each of these passages, Jesus’ purpose

takes the form of a command for every believer. The

passages are Matthew 28:18–20, Mark 16:15, Luke 24:47, 48,

John 20:21, and Acts 1:8. This clear message presents us

with the tremendous challenge of sharing Jesus.

Jesus always supplies sufficient grace, which is the

unmerited favor that gives us the desire and the power to

do His will, with every command given to each believer.

The Holy Spirit empowers us to do His will, and His Word

provides the principles we need to accomplish His mission.

David Wheeler, in his chapter “Spiritual Farming,” states,

“Effective evangelism never violates the principles of the

harvest. The best way to recapture success in evangelism is

to return to these principles.” 4

The church must return to the process of spiritual

farming if we are to see the spiritual power and growth

we long to see. God has not abandoned us; it is believers

abandoning the principles of the harvest that results in

our lack of fruitfulness. We blame all kinds of sins for our

sterile congregations, but the primary sin we must address

is the sin of silence.

David Wheeler gives us at least four key truths about the

principles of the spiritual harvest:

1. The harvest is a process, not an event.

In modernity, we came to know evangelism as an event

such as a revival service or a personal soul-winning

encounter, but the truth is the harvest requires the

laborious process of spiritual farming.

2. More than one element is involved

in the harvest.

In order to ensure a harvest, someone must plant seed.

The seed must be watered. God has to make it come to

life, grow, and bear fruit. In other words, it is God who

gives the increase of salvation, and it can only come

from Him (1 Corinthians 3:6–9).

3. Different people play different roles

in the harvest.

Some plant, and others water.

4. Every aspect is equally important.

If no one plants the seed, there will never be a harvest.

If no one waters the seed, it will never grow and

produce fruit. 5

According to William Fay, nonbelievers must hear the

Gospel an average of 7.6 times before they receive it. 6 The

process ends with a nonbeliever accepting Christ as their

Savior, but it begins with believers plowing the fields with

prayer and need-meeting service. Then the seed of the

Gospel must be planted, watered, and cared for. The more

believers pray, serve, and plant the seed, the greater

the harvest.

It is our responsibility as believers to be obedient to

God’s command to participate in the process of evangelism.

One caution must be given here: while living a life of

Christian integrity is important to the process of evangelism,

it is not enough to fulfill our calling to Christ’s mission.

“How then will they call on Him in whom they have not

believed? How will they believe in Him whom they have

not heard? And how will they hear without a preacher?

How will they preach [verbal communication] unless

they are sent? Just as it is written, ‘HOW BEAUTIFUL ARE

THE FEET OF THOSE WHO BRING GOOD NEWS OF GOOD

THINGS!’” (Romans 10:14, 15 NASB, italics mine).

Every believer is responsible for verbally sharing

Jesus with the unsaved. Let’s accept the challenge to

intentionally evangelize the lost for the Kingdom of God.

There is nothing that will bring spiritual fulfillment to your

life like the process of sharing Jesus!

______________

1 William Fay and Linda Evans Shepherd, Share Jesus Without Fear

(Nashville, TN: B & H Publishing Group, 1999), pp. 6, 7.

2 Dr. Jerry Pipes and Victor Lee, Family to Family: Leaving a Lasting

Legacy (North American Mission Board of the Southern Baptist

Convention, 1999), p. 27.

3 Ibid., p. 28.

4 Dave Early and David Wheeler, Evangelism Is . . . How to

Share Jesus With Passion and Confidence (Nashville, TN: B & H

Academic Publishing Group, 2010), pp. 85–92.

5 Ibid., pp. 85, 86.

6 Fay and Shepherd, p. 11.

John A. Stone, Pastor

Keith Street Ministries

Cleveland, Tennessee

WWM JUNE 2011 7


Scott Lee

Sheridan, Wyoming

Having been the lead

pastor at the same

church for nine years

and the youth minister

for about five years prior

to becoming the pastor,

I had reached a place

of discouragement. We

had seen some significant

growth and purchased

a different building.

With that move, the

immediate growth was

evident, and now I was

experiencing the pressure

from some individuals to

begin another project for

building or buying.

Feelings of inadequacy, coupled with

a perceived need to perform, drove me

to my knees. It was in that moment that

the Spirit of God spoke clearly to my

heart. I know that I heard the still, small

voice instruct me to focus on “building

people, not buildings.” With that, a

great burden lifted, encouragement

flooded my soul, and a fresh vision began

to develop.

As I processed what I felt God speaking

to me, I was reminded of the scripture

in Acts 17:24 that tells us clearly that

God doesn’t “dwell in buildings.” It is

interesting that when most people hear

or see the word church, we think first of

a building. In fact, sadly, it seems today

many individuals are more concerned

with buildings than they are with people!

I am convinced that there can be strong

local churches that operate out of facilities

that seemingly “aren’t much to speak of.”

I also believe that there can be strong

local churches that have no building at

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all. Whether you are in agreement with

me on this or not, consider this: if a local

church is going to be strong, it must be

focused on people, not buildings.

After I felt the Lord speak, I shared

this word with our leadership team,

and it was well-received. Since that

time, we have tried to promote that a

strong local church focuses on building

people. At Bethesda, this is done as

much outside of the church’s facility

as it is within our walls. New ministries

have grown through that word from

the Lord. Adopt-a-block, a local churchoperated

food bank, a weekly bus

ministry to the community shelter and

a local substance abuse center, and an

outreach to the state Girl School are

just a few of the ways we have found

as avenues to build people. Adopt-ablock

of Sheridan is a ministry in which

faithful support is offered to a lowincome

housing unit and a mobile home

court weekly.

We try to meet the needs of the people

there both spiritually and physically. We

have provided for the needs and wants

of individuals and families. From diapers

and milk to dog food and light bulbs, as

well as putting a new roof on one of the

mobile homes, we desire to assist these

folks in every way that we can. We have

also been able to pray with these folks

on many occasions.

Some of the people that we are

investing in may never attend our local

church, but we are not concerned with

that. Church attendance is not our goal.

We believe that through investing in

the lives of these precious people, we

are helping them to see their worth to

our loving God. By taking the church to

them, we are assisting them in growing

into the people that God has destined

for them to become.

We are blessed to have a facility from

which to minister. For any first-time guests

who do come through our doors, we

desire that from the moment they drive

into our parking lot until the time they

drive away they will have a meaningful

worship experience with our church

family in every way. From greeters assisting

It has been said that there are two

main reasons that people leave churches—

they feel they have no friends, and their

need for purpose has never been met.

attendees with umbrellas during the

rain and snow to follow-up gifts being

taken to the homes of first-time guests,

we want to add value to those whom

God sends to us. Our guests may never

return, and we are okay with that. Our

focus is not to get them to return; our

focus is to help them understand how

much they are valued by our God!

If someone chooses to return to our

church family, we shift to making disciples

of them. We offer a Discipleship Track

that has something for everyone.

From our First Steps curriculum to our

small group ministries, our hope is to

encourage consistent Christian growth

in those whom God entrusts to us. We

have intentionally designed a plan that

will assist everyone in becoming all that

God wants them to be.

Our Discipleship Track begins with

basic Bible truths, then transitions

into a more in-depth spiritual growth

course, and continues on through

Leadership Development. We desire

that our family know why they believe

what they believe. We desire that

each one would identify the gifting of

God that is upon their lives and then,

through the ministry of the small groups

and outreach efforts, we purposefully

provide opportunities for them to be

used in their gifting.

It has been said that there are two

main reasons that people leave churches—

they feel they have no friends, and their

need for purpose has never been met.

This obviously means that they haven’t

had a meaningful connection with

anyone in the church, and they do not

feel valued. This is why an emphasis on

building people is so effective. A healthy

discipleship ministry can help to meet

these two great needs of individuals.

We have found that new individuals are

effectively assimilated into our church

family, and they are better cared for

when they get connected to one of our

small groups.

When we can help those whom God

sends us by providing a caring and safe

environment in which to grow and then

offer them opportunities to use their

gifts, then we have found that we are

helping to build people. Sometimes,

God only leaves His people with us for

a short season. Sometimes, we have

individuals who are with us much

longer. Either way, we want to invest

in them while God allows them to be

a part of our family. At Bethesda, we

aren’t trying to “keep people,” we are

trying to “grow them” and then let God

place them wherever He desires for

them to be!

Believe me, it is easy to slip back into

the mindset that a strong local church

must have a nice facility, lots of people,

and a lot of money. We try to make it a

priority to speak often of the vision of

building people. From the pulpit, to the

children’s ministries, to the small group

leader in the home and into every

ministry, we must continually remind

ourselves and those we serve that we

are about growing people.

We are not a perfect church. We are

not a large church. We are a church that

can and will get better. We don’t have

all of the answers, but we are learning

this—God values people, not buildings.

With this vision at the core of our local

church, we have seen God prove to us

time and time again that when we value

what He values and invest in what He

invests in, then He will faithfully give us

what we need to take care of it.

WWM JUNE 2011 9


G General Presbyter Clayton Endecott

moved to Germany as a missionary

with his wife, Wanda, and his sons,

Cortney and Bradley, in 1983. What

was supposed to be a short-term visit

turned into a lifelong calling. With two

more children, Tessa and Christian, born

in Germany, Bishop Clayton dedicated

his life and work to God and missions.

Now Germany has two COGOP churches

in the cities of Langen and Erlangen,

and, in February, the churches joined

together to start a missions school.

Samson Chen, the director of the

mission school in England where more

than 150 short-term mission team

members have been trained and have

already visited several nations on

four continents, brought teams from

England to help establish the German

missions school. The two local churches

in Germany are now focusing on

evangelizing in their local communities

and on their mission outreach countries,

Armenia and Georgia.

Bishop Clayton was interviewed on

the topic of the role of missions in the

small church by his youngest son Christian,

who has been appointed missions

leader of the Langen Church and

serves as a freelance journalist for the

Offenbacher Post in Dreieich, Germany.

Why should a local church

be mission-minded, and how

important is this work to

reach the nations?

I feel it is an essential part of our

DNA as a Pentecostal church, a church

of “Spirit and Word.” The Word of God

is clear, from the call of missions from

God to Adam (“Where are you?”), and

the call for the nations in Yahweh’s

covenant with Abraham. The prophets

say God will give us the nations. Of

course, the words of Jesus are clear in

all four Gospels and then Acts, which

for me as a believer and for us as a

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From the

Community

to the World

movement are

not only historically

descriptive, but

prescriptive of

how the church of

Jesus Christ will act

and be.

Luke writes in

Acts 1:8 (NIV), “But

you will receive power when the

Holy Spirit comes on you; and you

will be my witnesses in Jerusalem,

and in all Judea and Samaria, and to

the ends of the earth.” The prescribed

missions method of Jesus can be best

explained with concentric circles.

Mission work starts at home—our first

circle of influence—and moves on to

the community, to the region, to the

state, to the country, and then on to

the outermost circle of influence, the

rest of the world. God is always looking

for the lost, and that is what His

church does.

A Conversation With Clayton Endecott

Our local churches in Germany have

been experiencing growth since we

have been committed to missions. This

is always a matter of prayer, giving,

raising leaders, and going out. A good

example for the growth in the local

body is the Emmanuel Church in Kiev,

Ukraine. Last year, the church sent

out more than 500 mission teams

into neighboring communities where

they gave witness and, in many cases,

planted new churches and have also

gone to surrounding nations.

Our small local churches in Germany

cannot send out so many mission teams

as a large church like Emanuel Church

in Kiev, who enjoys around 3,000 in

attendance, but we can train our teams

to evangelize in Germany and to assist

in church-planting in neighboring cities

and send them out to the nations each

year as well. Our size should not hold us

back from doing our part for missions at

home and abroad. Both large churches

and small churches can always trace

growth back to their true calling

to be mission-minded.

How can focusing on missions

also help the local church?

Missions, just like every other

ministry and value of the church, should

not only be preached and taught, but,

most importantly, be modeled by pastors

and leaders. We all learn better by

modeling than in the classroom; learning

by doing, just like Jesus and His disciples.

When pastors and leaders engage in

missions, it helps them to recognize and

focus their training on their emerging

leaders. The vision of the church will be

broadened. As we say in Germany, we

begin to think “beyond the rims of our

own soup bowl.” And, again, this starts

first at home, in your local “Jerusalem,”

and goes on to the world.

WWM JUNE 2011 11


What about churches that are

struggling financially? How

can they still be encouraged

to support missions?

Here the biblical concepts of

sowing and reaping through giving

come to mind, even when it seems

impossible. Giving is an act of God that

we personally and as a church need

to follow in obedience to love God. I

believe if we do not give lovingly to

others, the will of God for our own lives

and for our local church will suffer. We

simply close the doors of His abundance

when we do not give. Jesus is the

perfect example of generosity. The truth

is, when we give we always receive.

I love the story of a church in West

Texas I read about who decided to give

50 percent of their income to missions.

Since that time, the church has grown

in numbers and spiritually and supports

many mission projects all over the

world. They are also the largest church

in their city and have sent out many

church-planters and missionaries. Even

churches that are struggling financially

will receive more than they can imagine

from God when they are generous in

missions giving.

How can a church be mindful

of the global call and at the

same time not forget to reach

its own community?

People have often come to me in the

past and told me, “I have a heart for

Burma; I need to go to Burma.” After

they tell me they are from Birmingham,

I ask them, “What are you doing in your

home city?” Usually, I receive the same

reply: “Not much, I can’t really do

much here because I am not

where I belong yet

—in Burma.”

12 WWM JUNE 2011

It is as simple as it sounds. If it doesn’t

work in Birmingham, it is not going to

work in Burma. Yes, the church needs

to be mission-minded and also give

lovingly to missions, but let us again

not forget Acts 1:8. Missions starts at

home and emerges systematically to the

ends of the earth. The church that has a

heart for the lost on the other side of

the world will have a heart for people

across the street.

In February, the two churches in

Germany began a mission school with

more than 30 students ready to serve

the Lord in their local community and

abroad. During the years, both German

churches have had the privilege of

hearing from missionaries from around

the world and now hope to strengthen

Missions is the heart of

a thriving local church.

That is what makes

their heart beat.

their heart for evangelizing the lost in

Germany and around the globe. They

invite Christians from other nations every

year to participate in their children’s

and youth camps and experience God

together. The heart for missions seems

to be a natural part of their faith from

the beginning.

During Easter of last year, the church

in Langen sent a group of young adults

to Georgia and Armenia to serve and

witness there. For all of them, the trip

was a life-changing experience. They

came home and shared their testimonies

to the church where the whole church

was motivated to missions in a personal

way, and from all that the mission team

now participates in the mission school.

This year and next year, the churches are

planning to send out mission teams not

only to Armenia and Georgia, but also

to other countries while they engage in

evangelism and discipleship in their home

churches and neighboring communities.

I guess, for me, missions is the

heart of a thriving local church.

That is what makes their

heart beat.

WWW.WHITEWINGMESSENGER.ORG


What makes a strong local church? What makes attendance rise and fall? In my

opinion, these two questions have the same answer.

The impact a church has in a community will determine the strength of the

church and its numbers. A church that has little impact on a community will be

weak, but a church with great impact will be strong.

What is impact? Some individuals might say we cannot have impact without

money or without a lot of people to help. However, impact is more than what we

are able to give and do for a community; it is how we exist in that community.

Churches with the mentality that God will just bring people in don’t seem to

catch the fullness of Revelation 22:17: “And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. .

. .” The Spirit of God is already at work in our communities, but it is still up to the

bride to go and say, “Come.”

Take the parable of the wedding feast in Luke 14:16–24 in which the master

tells his servant to go and say, “Come . . .” (v. 17). When we pray for God to go and

bring people to the church, we are taking the place of the Master; telling God to

go and say, “Come” makes Him the servant.

If our church’s community does not even know it exists, then we have failed to

live up to what the calling of our church is. The community should know about

our church. They should at least know the name and location, and preferably the

pastor and doctrine.

Regarding resources, one may say, “We have nothing to give people when they

come.” I was once asked by a pastor, “What can I give them when they show up?

I have nothing at my church to give them—no music, no teachers, and a building

that is in need of repair.” To any pastor who is in the same position, give them the

only thing you can ever give—Jesus! He is all that truly matters. The rest helps, but

if we are Jesus’ body, then we have to be Him to the world.

Give people love, compassion, and Jesus. Skillful music, exciting multimedia,

and impressive structures will all pass away, but the words of God are eternal.

How can you impact your community? Share the Gospel. Going door-to-door

has seemingly become a lost art in the church today. When a church is planted in

a new area, attempting to connect with potential members should be one of the

main focuses of the church.

The Church of God of Prophecy has gone back to its core values—Prayer,

Harvest, and Discipleship. In these values lie the direction for the greatest impact a

church can make. First, pray and ask for God’s direction, blessing, and Spirit as you

go into the community. Second, spread the Gospel and win souls. And, then, teach

others to do the same.

One thing that is perhaps lacking in some congregations is the ability to

minister. We are saved not to be pew-riders, but to be workers. A. J. Tomlinson

once wrote a message titled, “Every Member a Worker,” in which he stated that

we are to not have inactive members who just come to church and pay tithes

and offering, but active, soul-winning members. In the world we live in, there

is no reason why we cannot try to reach our communities. With resources such

as computers, telephones, and flyers, we can work on doing something to press

forward in the Kingdom of God no matter how old we are, how much money our

church has, or how many people help us.

Do you love the community in which you attend church or do you just love

to attend a church that happens to be located in that community? What would

be the impact on the community if your church were to shut its doors for good?

Consider the impact your church is making, and pray for wisdom and laborers to

help make it more.

W. E. DeGeer Jr.

Irvington, Alabama

What

Makes a

Strong

Local

Church?

WWM JUNE 2011 13


The family is God’s primary institution

on earth. A God-centered family within

a vibrant local church is the best place

on earth for teaching, nurturing,

evangelizing, making disciples, building

relationships, equipping for service,

instilling godly principles, living out the

Great Commandment, and fulfilling the

Great Commission.

Local churches become stronger

as they place a renewed emphasis on

healthy families. While the church can

offer a variety of ministries and programs,

the best service the church can provide

is to help families help themselves. The

church should teach and model basic

biblical principles and then encourage

each family to apply and live out these

principles in daily life.

The Need for

Family Ministry

Families are in crisis, and they

need help. Unfortunately, the church

doesn’t always function as an authentic

community bound together by the

intimacy of Godly love. Therefore, the

church hasn’t always been equipped to

meet those needs.

This is reflected in the fact that

even though we’ve stood strongly in

opposition to divorce, it has now invaded

our families and churches in proportions

barely distinguishable from the rest of

society. As we move into the second

decade of the twenty-first century,

concerns about the destruction of

marriage and the breakdown of families

have moved to center stage. Sadly,

very few voices, even those of religious

leaders, have dared to speak up.

Biblical teaching aside, the breakdown

of marriage has social consequences.

The disappearance of a marriage culture,

and its replacement by a post-marital

culture, is the driving force behind almost

all the gravest societal problems—

crime, poverty, welfare dependence,

homelessness, spousal abuse, child

abuse, educational stagnation, and

economic instability.

Strong

Families

Make Strong

Churches

The rapid decline of marriage is based

on a central myth sold by intellectuals,

politicians, feminists, psychologists,

lawyers, and even some ministers—that

it’s not declining, but merely changing for

the better. We’re told that marriages are

happier and healthier, children are better

off, and people have more freedom and

choices now that the taboos against

divorce, same-sex marriage, and unwed

motherhood have been discarded.

As society accepts these myths, the

implications are clear: marriage has

become disposable. If we believe divorce,

the break-up of families, and illegitimacy

are inevitable, then no one needs to take

responsibility for the devastation. And

if there’s no solution, there really is no

problem. So we tend to treat the collapse

of marriage like a natural disaster such

as earthquakes, hurricanes, tsunamis,

tornadoes, or floods—all of which cause

pain and destruction that cannot be

prevented, only relieved somewhat after

the fact.

Local Churches

Ministering to Families

Ministry to the family must become

a major issue for our local churches.

However, effective ministry can’t be

provided simply by expanding the church’s

roster of activities, or by appointing an

14 WWM JUNE 2011 WWW.WHITEWINGMESSENGER.ORG


individual to oversee family ministries.

There must be a change in the mindset

of the pastor and local church if ministry

to families is to become effective.

Family ministry must have a two-fold

focus—to care for, support, nurture,

and empower families, and to bring

people together as a body of believers

in a way that enables authentic, biblical

community to take place.

There are several key elements that

are required for a local church to begin

formulating a response to the needs

of families.

• A theology of family—a fully

developed statement that

documents what we believe the

Bible teaches concerning marriage

and the family.

One reason why many churches

have been such poor caretakers

of marriage is because they have

never had a fully developed

theology of marriage. If we can’t

explain why marriage really matters

theologically, why maleness and

femaleness have real meaning,

and how marriage is God’s way

of completing these two sides of

humanity, then the only posture

we will have to stand against the

tidal wave of divorce, the rise

of illegitimate births, and the

homosexual onslaught is one of

personal prejudice.

A theology of marriage must be

more than a list of Scripture verses

on the topic. We must develop

and draw from a comprehensive

understanding of God’s creation of

male and female, why and how “the

two become one flesh,” and how

this “mystery,” as Paul calls it, is so

significant as to represent Christ’s

relationship with His church. If we don’t

live from this position, we are no

different from the world around us.

Other elements needed for an

effective local church ministry to families

include the following:

• A mission of family ministries—a

statement of why ministry to the

family exists in the local church.

This statement may also be

accompanied by specific objectives

that are expected to be fulfilled

through the mission.

• A vision of family ministries—a

statement of how things would

look if the church were effectively

carrying out its mission of

ministering to families.

• A passion for families—a burning

desire for families to grow spiritually,

relationally, and emotionally.

• A champion of families—an

individual, or group, within the

local church who is committed

without reservation to the welfare

and growth of families. Ideally,

the pastor would be the primary

champion of the family in each

church, but there should be others

as well. The pastor sets the agenda.

• A mindset for families—a way of

understanding what church is all

about that takes into account the

centrality of families.

Notice that none of these elements

are programmatic. Programs aimed at

families will not, by themselves, achieve

the objective of building strong, stable

families. Activities and programs aren’t

the foundation of family ministry;

intimate, loving relationships are.

Most often, a local church is a

collection of ministries and programs

designed to be supported by families. In

order to become most effective, however,

the church must become a network

of families supported by the church’s

ministries and programs.

Such thinking is a radical departure

from our current understanding of

church. For many years, we’ve relied

on our strong stand against divorce

to ensure strong families, and while

we should stand firmly on scriptural

principles regarding the sanctity of

marriage, that by itself has proven to be

ineffective in saving our families from

stress and break-up.

We’ve now reached a point at which

what we do must match what we believe.

It’s not enough to be against divorce;

we must be for families, and that means

reinventing church in such a way that

the needs of families are considered

in the design and operation of all we

do. This doesn’t mean that the church

becomes the focus of the family, but

rather that the family becomes the focus

of the church.

George Barna suggests that a key

principle the church must keep in

mind is to equip the family to minister

to itself. His contention is that most

churches attempt to solve the problems

of troubled families instead of helping

families solve their own problems. This

creates a co-dependency, or addiction, in

which the family never becomes able to

function on its own without intervention

by the church. Family crises don’t occur

at the church, so families must be

equipped to deal with crises when and

where they happen—in real life.

The church must enable the family to

meet its own needs so the family, in turn,

can bring life and strength to the church.

In this way, families become contributors

to the life of the local church rather than

consumers of the church’s resources.

There’s so much work to be done.

Satan is attacking families more heavily

than at any other time. Again, I believe

this is because he knows that families are

at the very heart of God’s purposes here

on earth. The enemy knows that if he can

destroy marriages and families, he has

gone a long way toward destroying the

church. Please join us in the fight for

our families.

The time has come when we are going

to have to put our beliefs into action

and bring all our resources to bear in the

fight against the forces that are bent on

destroying God’s primary institution,

the family. Together, with God’s help,

we can do it.

Larry Duncan, Pastor

Coweta, Oklahoma

WWM JUNE 2011 15


Local churches are like families, but even the best families

sometimes have heated disagreements that change the

course of the relationship. As a leader, what can you do when

you encounter conflict? Your thoughtful, measured response

is important.

How do you respond to disagreements? What is your

conflict resolution style? You may gravitate toward one of five

responses. Take a quick break from reading this magazine,

and take an online test. Go to www.selectpro.net/index.php/

ScrInfoIBA.html.

How did you do? In this article, we’ll look at some of

the advantages and disadvantages for each response. The

following are the five responses—avoiding, competing,

accommodating, compromising, and collaborating.

16 WWM JUNE 2011

Dr. H. E. Cardin

Cleveland, Tennessee

Avoiding

The possible mantra is, “If you ignore it, it will go away.”

This style is unassertive and not very cooperative. The

positive aspects of an “avoiding” style are that it

reduces stress, saves time, side-steps danger, and waits

for better conditions. The negative aspects of this

style are that it generates a loss of respect, builds

potential resentment, or delays or creates a decline in the

working relationship.

Scripture talks about avoiding in several instances. If you

see evil, and it will bring conflict, avoid it (Proverbs 4:14,

15). Should you see where you might go head-to-head with

someone causing trouble, avoid them (Romans 16:17). We


are also told to avoid vain rhetoric (1 Timothy 6:20), and

avoid questions that create strife (2 Timothy 2:23; Titus 3:9).

When might you consider avoidance? When the issues are

unimportant. When the issues are really symptoms of other

issues. When the issues are something someone else can

handle. When issues are just too sensitive. When it’s an issue

that you simply cannot win (a lose/lose situation).

Should you respond with avoidance, exercise caution. Be

careful to not be judgmental and blame others; control your

anger, and stay focused on clearly declared goals. When you

postpone, set the time. I remember a time that any degree

of tension or conflict would arise during business meetings,

the moderator would say, “We will table this at this time.” A

mentor to me once said loudly, “How big is that table?” Set a

time. Use humor to diffuse the tension.

How do people avoid? They quit jobs, leave a church, lose

contact, withdraw from participation, and become more

absent. They give the appearance that they’re not aware

(didn’t see, didn’t hear, hasn’t spoken).

Dr. Fred Garmon of the Pentecostal Theological Seminary

said that among Church of God ministers who were surveyed

for their style of handling conflict, avoidance scored numberone

(38.5 percent). Pastors who leave because of conflict

were 29.2 percent. Of these, 42.1 percent will leave a second

church. Those who would change professions because of

conflict were 33.7 percent (Evangel, Volume 8, Number 3).

Competing

The possible mantra of those with this style of conflict

resolution is, “My way or the highway.” This style is very

assertive, but not very cooperative. The positive aspect of

this style is that a quick decision is reached. However, the

negative aspects are many: feedback may not be given;

low empowerment; reduced learning; restricted influence;

indecision; slow to act; and low empowerment. The

“competing” personality may be surrounded by “yes men”

and have strained relationships with others.

Scripture is used many times with the competing style:

“Obey them that have the rule over you, and submit

yourselves . . .” (Hebrews 13:17); “. . . but I would not stretch

forth mine hand against the LORD’s anointed” (1 Samuel

26:23); “And whatsoever ye do, do it heartily, as to the Lord,

and not unto men” (Colossians 3:23); and “. . . there was also

a strife among them, which of them should be accounted the

greatest. And he said unto them, The kings of

the Gentiles exercise lordship over them . . .” (Luke 22:24, 25).

When should you consider using the competing style?

When there is only one response (based on polity, procedure,

etc.). When an unpopular action needs to be taken. When

a quick decision is needed. When consensus fails. When

people are too reserved. You have asked for input, but little

to nothing has been shared.

If the competing style is used, be careful to lay the

groundwork, explain your motives, appeal to shared concerns,

be specific, be focused, be respectful, listen and respond,

don’t threaten, and outline healthy boundaries.

Accommodating

The possible mantra of the accommodator is, “I really

want to help.” This style is not very assertive and is quiet

cooperative. The positive aspects are that it is greatly

appreciated when help is needed, when harmony needs to

be restored, when building relationships, and when you need

a quick ending. The negative aspect is that it could lead to

loss of respect. (“Just tell me what to do, and I’ll do it.”)

The Bible speaks of accommodating in Romans 15:1: “We

then that are strong ought to bear the infirmities of the weak,

and not to please ourselves.” It is also addressed in Romans 12:21:

“Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good.” Other

verses that touch on it include the following: “Let no man seek

his own, but every man another’s wealth” (1 Corinthians 10:24)

and “Be kindly affectioned one to another with brotherly love;

in honour preferring one another” (Romans 12:10). We are

also reminded that Christ took “. . . upon him the form of a

servant . . .” (Phillippians 2:7). Regarding lawsuits, Paul

asks, “. . . Why not rather be wronged? Why not rather be

cheated?” (1 Corinthians 6:7 NIV).

When might you consider accommodating? When you

are doing a favor to help someone, when you have been

persuaded, when you are obeying authority, when you

are deferring to someone else’s experience, when you are

appeasing someone who is dangerous, when you have been

outvoted, when you have been convinced, or when you need

to repair any damage you may have caused.

Should you respond with accommodation, be careful to

not be a sore loser. If you have wronged someone, apologize.

Compromising

The possible mantra is, “Let’s make a deal.” This is

somewhat assertive and somewhat cooperative. The positive

aspects of this style are that it can be faster, it can be fair,

and it can help to maintain the relationship. Negative aspects

include losing the big picture and compromising on items

that shouldn’t be allowed. You could also lose long-term

goals, and you could become cynical.

In the Word, we are told to “submit yourselves one

to another . . .” (Ephesians 5:21), “. . . live peaceably . . .”

(Romans 12:18), and “. . . be ye transformed by the renewing

of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and

acceptable, and perfect, will of God” (v. 2).

When might you consider compromise? When people

need to “save face,” to avoid embarrassment, when you

need a temporary solution to a complex issue, when you

need a quick decision, when being more assertive would

harm relationships, or when other methods (competing,

collaborating, etc.) have failed.

WWM JUNE 2011 17


If you plan to compromise, there are things to consider.

It’s very important to remember that compromising isn’t

weakness. Make concessions as long as they are reciprocal.

Insist on fairness up-front. Determine the facts as objectively

as possible.

Collaborating

The final conflict style is a popular one for bringing peace

into a situation. The collaborator’s possible mantra is, “Two

heads are better than one.” This style is very assertive and

very cooperative. Positive traits of collaborating mean

that you will have a higher quality of a decision, be able

to integrate a solution, learn by merging perspectives, and

gain commitment. You can also move past the conflict to

strengthen relationships. Collaborating creates a win-win

atmosphere, and combines the insights so as to reach a

richer understanding. Though this style is most encouraged,

there are still possible negatives. You can spend too much

time on trivial matters. Also, others may take advantage of

your spirit of cooperation, and you may wind up overloaded

with work.

The Bible tells us, “. . . how good and how pleasant it is

for brethren to dwell together in unity” (Psalm 133:1), and

instructs us to “. . . keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond

of peace” (Ephesians 4:3). In the familiar passage of Romans

8:28, “And we know that all things work together for good to

them that love God, to them who are the called according to

his purpose,” the phrase, “work together” is from the Greek

sunergeo (soon-erg-eh’-o), where we get our word synergy.

When should you consider collaborating? When both

concerns are vital, when learning is needed, when there is

a need to merge insights from diverse perspectives, when

you need commitment to a decision (ownership), and when

relationships need to be restored.

Should you respond with collaboration, be careful to set

the right tone when addressing the issue. Identify both sides

of the concern, and state the conflict is a mutual problem.

Encourage brainstorming, and then pick the best ideas

from all. Be firm, but also allow for some flexibility. During

collaboration, use “we” language without blaming. Listen

rather than jump to conclusions. Restate the other person’s

concern, showing your understanding. Stay away from

language such as, “We need to . . .” or “We should. . . .”

Instead, use phrases such as, “What if we were to . . .” or

“Suppose we. . . .” Then agree on the best ideas. It’s also a

good idea to use humor to ease the tension.

In whatever conflict style you find yourself using, proceed

with prayer. Realize that our enemy is ultimately not of this

world, and his goal is to divide us. Be confident of your

role as a leader in seeking the best possible solution to

the conflict.

________________

For more information, visit “Ministry Helps” at www.

tomlinsoncenter.com/ministryhelps.htm and see the many other

items that address the subject of conflict.

Need a greater understanding in dealing with conflict? Consider

some of the CIMS courses offered by the Tomlinson Center.

Leading With Integrity: Church Leadership and Administration—A study of contemporary concepts of spiritual

leadership with emphasis on scriptural models for varied administrative and leadership functions, including

communication, decision-making, conflict management, delegation, financial accountability, stewardship, and

operational procedures. Christ should be at the center of the leadership role. 2 CIMS credits. The portion dealing

with conflict resolution includes Conflict Is Universal; Unresolved Conflict Escalates; Poor Communication Causes

Conflict; A Model for Conflict Resolution, Part 1 and 2 by Dr. Mary Ruth Stone.

Helping People in Crisis; Pastoral Care and Counseling—A study of helping skills for pastors. This course reviews

basic counseling principles in working with people in crisis situations, in times of grief, and in times of death and

dying. The course also reviews referral opportunities, community resources, and ethical guidelines, including

confidentiality and reportable offenses. 2 CIMS credits. The portion dealing with conflict resolution includes

Marital Crisis—Covenant and Marriage and Marital Crisis—Conflict and Marriage by Dr. John Vining.

Understanding Yourself and Others: Understanding Human Behavior—An introduction to the study of human

personality and behavior from a Christian perspective. The goal of such a study is to help the student to attain a

better self-understanding and to gain a knowledge of the personality attributes of the individuals with whom he or

she interacts. 1 CIMS credit. The portion dealing with conflict resolution includes Conflict Resolution, Part 1 and 2

by Dr. Paul Conn.

Take these courses for credit, and learn how to have them transferred for full college credit.

Visit tomlinsoncenter.org for more information.

18 WWM JUNE 2011 WWW.WHITEWINGMESSENGER.ORG


Is Your Church Fiscally Fit?

Is your church fiscally fit? To

determine whether or not it is, you

must look at the average of giving in

relation to your attendance. A rule of

thumb minimum, as a starting point,

is $1,200 per person for the highest

weekly gathering, which is usually

Sunday morning. If your Sunday

morning attendance is 150, your

reference point to see if your church

is fiscally fit is $180,000 per year.

Anything less than this is a wakeup

call for you to teach and preach

stewardship as soon as possible.

A strong local church will experience

generosity from people who give freely,

joyously, regularly, expectantly, and

even sacrificially. Good stewardship

doesn’t just happen, nor is it developed

in a vacuum.

There are three foundation stones

upon which a fiscally sound and

strong church is built:

1. People are experiencing a

deeper commitment to Christ in dayto-day

living. Stewardship is so

important because it reveals outwardly

what’s inward. Sound churches

are filled with committed believers

who are continuously growing in

their spirituality and discipleship.

Obedience and faithfulness prevail

over personal agendas with a “what’s

in it for me” attitude. Generosity was

the first genuine response to the

outpouring of the Holy Spirit.

“And when they had prayed, the

place in which they were gathered

together was shaken, and they were

all filled with the Holy Spirit and

continued to speak the word of God

with boldness. Now the full number

of those who believed were of one

heart and soul, and no one said

that any of the things that belonged

to him was his own, but they had

everything in common” (Acts 4:31, 32).

When they were all filled with

the Holy Ghost, they immediately

lived out the bedrock stewardship

teaching that God is the owner of

everything. They were able to be very

generous because they no longer saw

themselves as owners. Everything

they had became available to God

and others. Their hands opened over

all that had been placed in them—no

grasping, possessing, and locking up.

2. There is a clear and compelling

vision of what God is calling the

church to be and to do. The mission

statement of your church must be

more than a cliché. It must be more

than ink on paper or projection of

the PowerPoint statement. Prayer

and fasting have identified God’s

vision for your church so clearly, it is

easily articulated to the even casual

attendant. People will give to vision,

especially when it has been formed

from God’s heart. Everyone delights in

partnering with a passionate, fulfilling

ministry that is changing lives and

making a difference in where people

spend eternity.

3. There is a high level of trust that

leadership is handling the finances

in a God-honoring way. An effective

finance and stewardship committee

that consists of a true representative

of the church is at work. A budget

that is driven by the vision is the

centerpiece of a church that operates

with a level of openness that leaves

no room for lack of

accountability. A budget

that stretches with faith,

yet is realistic, communicates

that good stewardship is

practiced at all levels in all areas

of ministry. Every member can

know how much money comes into

the church, how it is used, and the

results realized. Safeguards such

as two offering counters and two

authorizations of each check are

in place.

Strong churches are a reflection of

strong leaders and strong decisions. A

strong church recognizes its work is

not done until the people are handling

their money, time, and talents according

to biblical principles. An annual

stewardship emphasis month that

teaches children, youth, and new

converts tithing and giving is on the

calendar. Stewardship is a year-round

part of the ongoing discipleship

ministry as well. Bible studies and

small group ministries help people to

discover their motivational gift with

an in-depth study of Romans 12:6–8.

In strong churches, people are

taught to live by God’s principles such

as tithing first fruits, minimizing debt,

and giving sacrificially. No church can

be strong if the biblical mandate for

good stewardship is feared, ignored,

and neglected. The pastor must put

forth the vision. A stewardship director

would also be a good addition to the

core of the church’s leadership team.

Jan Couch

Stewardship Ministries

Director

WWM JUNE 2011 19


More than 1,200 youth and youth workers from the Caribbean and all over North America gathered at the Marriott

World Center, Orlando, Florida, for the Church of God of Prophecy International Youth Conference March 25–27, 2011.

The conference’s dynamic, four-fold theme, “Discern, Develop, Devote, Deliver” served as a strategic building block for

creating the four-dimension youth. Each Spirit-filled session was designed to engage and prepare today’s youth. Friday

night spotlighted “Discern,” Saturday morning focused on “Develop,” Saturday night promoted “Devote,” and Sunday

morning concluded with “Deliver.”

With great expectations and enthusiasm, Friday morning registration was a grand success. The youth of the church

were ready to EMERGE to a higher level in God and in ministry. The vision for the conference was to have an encounter

with God, allow Him to reveal His call in the lives of His youth, and be released to fulfill that calling in the world.

Angélica Maria Dorantes, Chile, said, “Wow, Emerge was a beautiful experience that I’m still remembering 4D. My

husband and I are grateful to God for the opportunity to attend Emerge, to see young people with high skills, preaching,

teaching, prayer, and praise, beautiful talents, and a beautiful feast. We shared with many young people from different

latitudes together with the sole purpose of learning, sharing, proclaiming, and blessing the name of our God.”

Gospel Worship Pastor of Destiny Church, Texas, Freddy Rodriguez evoked the presence of God on Friday night and

for the remainder of the weekend. The atmosphere was filled with pure worship and adoration as he was led by the

Holy Spirit. He sang songs like, “I Will Run,” “You Make All Things New,” “How He Loves Us,” and “Wrap Me in Your

Arms” among others.

Master Illusionist Harris III blew the audience away as he displayed how easily people can be deceived. Through his

purposeful performance, he reminded the youth to walk by faith and not by sight.

As the weekend was filled with diversity in the body of Christ, Rhema Soul, Gospel HIP HOP Sensation rocked the

conference room. They brought their own flavor and style. Some youth were seen bouncing and nodding their heads as

they ministered.

Who could forget the children? The children’s ministry had Spirit-filled and dynamic sessions throughout Emerge. The

kids were energized and excited about praise and worship, the Word, and other engaging activities like balloon-twisting

and juggling.

20 WWM JUNE 2011 WWW.WHITEWINGMESSENGER.ORG


Setting the pace for the conference, the first speaker was

Robert Madu from Texas. His message was based on discerning

your gifts from God. “There are three people that want our gift:

God wants our gift, the enemy wants our gift, and other people

want our gift.” How do you determine your gift? These are the

steps: “Identify what you like to do: What comes easy to you

that is hard for others? What do other people like about you?”

Madu said.

Saturday morning was a series of holistic workshops peaking

the interest of all in attendance. It was clear that some people

could not make up their minds on which workshop to attend

while others were very passionate and knew exactly where they

wanted to go. There were power-packed sessions such as, “Warfare

Praise Dance,” “Spiritual Warfare,” “He Has Called You,” “Friends

With Benefits,” “Successful Me,” “Cultivating Your Call to

Preach,” “I’m a Missionary,” and “Gym Shoes and Tired Knees.”

As the Church of God of Prophecy core values are to glorify

God through prayer, harvest, and leadership development,

it was a great honor to have the General Overseer, Randall

Howard, in attendance at the conference. He also conducted an

enlightening and empowering workshop under the theme, “Your

Spiritual Life.”

On Saturday night, eyes were closed, hands lifted, and hearts

chased after God as renowned Gospel Recording Artist William

McDowell ministered his hits, “I Give Myself Away” and “We Say

Yes.” His ministry brought a shift in the service, and the Word of

God was brought through His servant, Jerry Chalk, from Ukraine.

Chalk challenged the young people to encounter God because

“Your calling becomes your challenge to change your world,

your encounter brings your confirmation, your encounter brings

your transformation, and your transformation brings God’s

desire in your life,” he said.

After Saturday night’s General Session, there was an “After-

Glow.” Gifted youth from the represented countries hit the stage

and displayed their unique talents. A memorable moment was

when The British Virgin Islands Worship Team “caught a fire,”

and the youth were so blessed by their ministry that they left

the conference room singing praises to God.

On Sunday morning, the final session of the conference was

powerful. Rodriguez was accompanied by a Worship Ministry

Ensemble, and there was a dynamic drama presentation by

Battlefront Ministries. Trevor Reid, International Youth Co-

Director, released the youth to deliver through the Word. He

said, “This army will deliver, heal, prophesy, be visionaries,

anointed, and powerful. No weapon formed against us could

prosper, we are a mighty army.”

Chains were broken, lives were healed, eyes were opened, and

Christ was revealed. After the four-dimension weekend, the goals

of the conference were achieved. Gifts were stirred up, the call

of God was acknowledged, and tools were provided to nurture

the call. Operation Omega Youth Ministries has EMERGED!

—Katherine Beneby II

Church of God of Prophecy (Bahamas)

WWM JUNE 2011 21


Children Bring

Strength to the

Local Church

One of the greatest resources available to the

local church is the contribution made by a child

servant. Many of us focus on the responsibility

that we have to minister to children. While this

is certainly a necessary and biblical pursuit, we

must not forget another part of the equation.

God is calling children to minister and bring

strength to the local church. It is not necessary

to wait until our children reach maturity before

they are used by God. Children have so much to

offer, and it is time to capitalize on it. One needs

to look no further than the child Samuel to see

what God can do, not only for the young harvest

but through the young harvest.

The Dedication

of Children Causes

the Dedication

of Parents.

Samuel’s mother Hannah vowed, saying, “. . .

remember me, and not forget thine handmaid,

but wilt give unto thine handmaid a man child,

then I will give him unto the Lord all the days

of his life . . .” (1 Samuel 1:11). A year after

Hannah’s prayer, Samuel was born. Two years

later, Hannah dedicated her son to the Lord.

Samuel was not the only person who was

dedicated that day. The mother’s commitment

to God was so influenced by this child that she

gave him back to God for His service. Her life was

changed! Children have a way of influencing their

parents in this way. Focusing on the spiritual

needs of children not only blesses them, but it

blesses us.

Children hear

the voice of god.

Samuel heard God’s voice, but his

inexperience led him to the Priest Eli to answer

the call. This young child said yes, even before he

knew who he was answering. He was listening;

he was eager to be obedient and to serve. He

eventually discovered it was the call of the Lord,

not the call of the priest that he was hearing.

God is still calling children for His service, and

they are willing to say yes with no questions

asked. Children are energetic servants, capable

of hearing from the Lord. Now, consider what

would have happened if Eli had discouraged

Samuel’s experience. Eli could have very easily

discounted what Samuel was hearing by saying,

“You are just too young.” However, Eli said,

“Go, lie down: and it shall be, if he calls thee,

that thou shalt say, Speak, Lord, for thy servant

heareth . . .” (3:9). For every modern-day Samuel,

God has selected an Eli that will encourage the

child to be obedient by saying “yes.”

children Speak

the word of god.

When Samuel did as Eli instructed him,

the Lord told Samuel about the things He

22 WWM JUNE 2011 WWW.WHITEWINGMESSENGER.ORG


was going to do in Eli’s house. Eli’s sons

were unrestrained, and judgment was

coming. Even though Eli had been told this

previously by the Lord, when the words

were spoken by the child Samuel, Eli was

willing to listen. When Samuel spoke, Eli

confessed, “He is the LORD; let him do

what is good in his eyes” (v. 18 NIV). It took

the words of a child to bring the message

home to Eli. God used Samuel long before

he was recognized as a prophet. God

will use honest, unassuming children to

speak His truths to us if we will only listen.

Perfect praise can come through children

as evidenced in Matthew 21:16: “Out of

the mouth of babes and sucklings thou hast

perfected praise.”

Churches that make room for children

to minister have hope. Children are more

than capable of leading us in the Word

and worship. We must simply learn to look

and listen for what God is saying to and

through them.

Jeff White

Greenville, South Carolina

Make plans now to attend

the 2011 Institute of

Children’s Ministry.

September 22–25, 2011

Ridgecrest, North Carolina

Reasons Children Are

Essential to a Healthy

Local Church

4

1. Serving children in the local church is an opportunity to

serve Christ Himself. “And whoever welcomes a little child

like this in my name welcomes me” (Matthew 18:5 NIV).

2. Children assure the future of the local church (Judges 2:10;

Psalm 78:1–7). Neil Postman said, “Children are the living

messages we send to a time we will not see.”

3. Children are the reservoir from which the local church will

draw future ministry leaders. If the local church effectively

disciples its children, within ten years there will be an

overflowing reservoir of leaders to serve in the local

church and to send out from the local church.

4. Believing children are gifted by the Holy Spirit just as

adults are. When their ministry gifts are recognized,

developed, and released, they will be used to bring the

body of believers into unity and spiritual maturity

(Ephesians 4:11–16).

• Grow in your ability to lead from a place of spiritual

and emotional health.

• Discover ways to lead up, influencing your senior

pastor and those who serve alongside you.

• Become better equipped to lead children’s ministry

strategically, creatively, and relationally.

• Learn ways you can lead families in creating faith

environments in their homes.

Skilled leaders are essential to the

accomplishment of God’s purposes in

the lives of our children.

For more information, visit the Children’s

Ministry website at http://children.cogop.org.

WWM JUNE 2011 23


Vision 2020: For Such A Time As This

Guest Speakers

Randy Howard,

General Overseer

Trevor Reid,

International Youth

Ministries Co-Director

Pastors and Pastors’ Wives Conference

September 26-29, 2011

Clarion Hotel, Tegucigalpa, Honduras

Benjamin Feliz,

Central America

General Presbyter

Kathy Creasy,

International Children’s

Ministries Director

Receive training and ministry from quality, proven leaders on the following topics:

Church Growth

• Discipleship

• Missions

• Children’s Ministries

Sam Clements,

North America

General Presbyter

José Garcia,

California State

Overseer

Registration

$250/per person at Clarion Hotel, two to a room ($475 for married couples)

For special arrangements, contact Damaris Feliz at (423) 559-5521 or dfeliz@cogop.org.

Register by completing the form below or online at www.cogop.org/hondurasconference.

REGISTRATION FORM (Must be postmarked by July 1, 2011)

Name: ______________________________________________________________________________________________

Address: ____________________________________________________________________________________________

City: _______________________________ State: _____________ Zip:_________ E-mail: __________________________

Accommodations: ___ Hotel ($250/person or $475/married couple)

Payment Enclosed: ___ Check ___ Money Order

Gabriel E. Vidal,

South America

General Presbyter

No picture

available

Mario Vega,

Pastor of Christian

Elim, El Salvador

David Bryan, Global

Outreach Ministries

Director

No picture

available

Rene Peñalba, Pastor

of Central Christian

International Church

• Youth Ministry

• Prayer

• Leadership Development

• Holiness

Hector Ortiz, Center

for Biblical Leadership

Director

No picture

available

Edmundo Guillen,

Pastor of Lluvia de

Gracia, Honduras

Return to:

Church of God of Prophecy International Offices

Central America General Presbyter’s Office

P.O. Box 2910

24 WWM JUNE 2011 Cleveland, TN 37320-2910 WWW.WHITEWINGMESSENGER.ORG


European Area-Wide Ladies Retreat

Cyprus

Every other year, the International

Ladies Retreat team is blessed to join women

from the nations of Europe, Eastern Europe, and the Middle

East for a celebration of ministry. This year, the nation of

Cyprus hosted the bi-annual event at the Palm Beach Hotel in

Larnaca. The team of ministry included Soula Charalambous,

Wanda Endecott, Judy Gregorio, Lyena Chalk, Athena Petrou,

Loula Petrides, Diana Hutch, Donna Howard, myself and

my husband, John, and all the national leaders from the

nations of Europe, Eastern Europe, and the Middle East. We

were blessed to have our General Presbyter, Bishop Clayton

Endecott, and the Presiding Bishops of five nations to join us

(Cyprus, Egypt, Bosnia Herzegovina/Italy/Macedonia/Malta,

Germany, and Greece).

The Friday evening service began with a powerful manifestation

of the presence of God through celebration and worship. We

also celebrated the supernatural healing and restoration of

Ximo Gregorio, and the attendance of Samir and Eatedal Rizk

from a chaotic and violent national crisis in Egypt. As these

and others began to testify about the work of the Spirit in

their lives, ministries, and nations, faith began to rise.

Saturday began with the ministry of Diana Hutch

(Columbus, Ohio), Donna Howard (Odenville, Alabama) and

Soula Charambous (Larnaca, Greece) and continued into

the evening with the testimonies of the miraculous work of

God throughout the nations as each national leader of this

Samir and Eatedal Rizk

region shared. The evening continued with celebration and

miracles as prayer led us to witness the power of salvation,

sanctification, Spirit baptism, healing, restoration, provision,

and many other blessings and works of the Spirit.

As we gathered Sunday morning for our last service

together, the witness of the Lord came, and we were once

again ushered into His presence as He worked among us.

Our special thanks go to Bishop and Sister Charalambous

and their national staff as the host nation for organizing

a beautiful conference site and extending a warm and

loving welcome.

Shortly after this retreat, we received the news of the

unexpected death of Tetyana (Tanya) Voznyuk, the wife of our

Presiding Bishop in Ukraine and co-pastor of our local church

in Kiev. Tanya’s investment in and influence through the

women’s retreat/conference ministry has been amazing and

life-impacting. Within her own nation, she had become an

example of creative, anointed, and excellent ministry. While

we mourn her departure from earth, heaven rejoices in her

victorious arrival in eternity.

Cathy Payne

Women’s Ministries

Director

Tetyana (Tanya) Voznyuk, far right

Ximo Gregorio

WWM JUNE 2011 25


It’s Not

What I Do . . .

It’s Who

I Am

Recently, an incident happened

that brought me to a profound

realization of what being a minister is

all about.

I had a full day planned. This is not

so unusual, but the way it unfolded

led me to what I like to call a “divine

appointment.” I started out my

morning at Vanderbilt University

Hospital with a visit to one of our

friends, Bill, who had been taken

there in the middle of the night

by ambulance. He had been in the

emergency room all night long, and

his family waited anxiously to hear a

diagnosis from the doctors.

I left there and started on my way

home. I needed to be in Cleveland by

4:00 p.m. that afternoon, and it is a

three and one-half hour drive.

Earlier, I had ordered a specific book

from Amazon.com that I needed for

research, and it had not yet arrived,

so I decided to visit Barnes and Noble.

After walking to the section where

the book should have been, I decided

to go to the information desk and ask

if they had it in stock. There was an

older man standing at the information

desk asking about a book, and the

clerk could not seem to find it in

their system. I waited patiently and

overheard the man give the name

of the author. It was a name I had

been familiar with since studying

this author more than 20 years ago

in college.

I said, “Excuse me, I don’t mean

to intrude, but I believe I can help

you with this.” The man turned and

said, “Please do.” I then stated, “That

book has probably been out of print

for many years, and you will have a

hard time finding it. It was probably

published before World War I.”

The clerk then said, “Do you know

the author’s name?” “Yes,” I replied

and shared it with her. She typed

the name of the author in, and the

computer pulled up the title of the

book and the author’s other works

and excitedly said, “It was published

in 1918; you were right.” Then she

said to me, “He is looking for a book

to give as a gift to his granddaughter.”

This man then looked at me, and

his face saddened. He said, “It’s not

really for my granddaughter, it’s for

me. I am trying to find a book that will

26 WWM JUNE 2011 WWW.WHITEWINGMESSENGER.ORG


help me find God. I can’t seem to find

anything here.”

I looked around the large store

(I must admit it was on purpose and

a bit dramatic), and I said, “Do you

see all of these books in this store?

There are thousands.” I then said,

“I know the God that gave all of this

knowledge, and in fact there aren’t

enough books to contain Him.”

A huge tear dropped down the

man’s cheek as he said, “I just don’t

understand.” I smiled and said, “May I

share something with you?”

By now, the other staff had

begun to gather at the information

desk. Three ladies were watching

intently and listening to every word. I

continued, “Sir, what is your name?”

“John,” he answered. I said, “Well,

John, let me tell you the two basic

truths about all true theology.”

I continued, “First, God is. He

exists; He is real. And second, you can

find Him.” At that point, he said, “I’ve

tried a lot of churches—Evangelical,

Lutheran, Catholic, even Pentecostal,

but I can only find a lot of noise.

Nothing is speaking clearly with me.

I am lost.”

I then said, “John, I am not talking

about religion. I am talking about a

real relationship with the true and

living God, and He wants you to

know Him. He wants you to know

Him personally.”

By now, John’s tears were flowing

freely, and the women around the

counter hadn’t moved. Now, there

were two other individuals standing

behind me, and I noticed they were

paying attention to every word. I

said, “John, can I pray with you?” His

answer was the one I expected and

the one I hoped for: “Yes, please.”

As I placed my hand on his shoulder

and began to bless him, John met the

Lord right there in the middle of the

store. To God be the glory!

After spending a little more time

with John and sharing good resources

for his newfound faith, he said, “I’ve

found what I was looking for. I can’t

believe you were standing right

there when I was searching for an

answer.” My reply was simple. “John,

that’s just how much God loves you.

He had a divine appointment with

you today.”

After John left, the woman said,

“Is there a book you were looking

for?” I said, “Yes, but I doubt you

have it in stock.” She checked and

found they did not have it. I realized

Do you love teenagers and enjoy world cultures?

High school students from Europe, South America, and Asia are anxious to teach

us about countries different from our own!

We would like to invite you to become a Center for Cultural Interchange (CCI)

host family and host an exchange student. Provide an enriching experience for

your household and your church family. You may call (740) 414-4133 for more

information and testimonies.

The CCI is a non-profit organization working with partners in 40 countries. We

appreciate your support of our efforts to provide quality experiences for

American families and for the world’s youth. Please do not hesitate to call or

e-mail for additional information. (CCI is a fully accredited organization.)

Melissa McCrary-Pinkerton

CCI Area Representative

cci.arearep@yahoo.com

that the search for a book was never

the object of the trip to Barnes and

Noble. John was the object of the

search, and the Good Shepherd found

John there.

Later in the afternoon, I made the

trip to Cleveland for the memorial

service of a great man of God, Bishop

Henry Biggers.

As I sat in the church, listening to

the songs, listening to the sermon,

and looking around the room at the

multitude of ministers both active

and retired, the thought of my

encounter with John that day was

fresh in my mind. I realized that so

much is expected of ministers, but

the recurring thought kept coming to

my mind: This is not what I do . . . it’s

who I am.

And so it is with all of us who carry

the Gospel of Jesus Christ. We care

for His people because it’s not what

we do . . . it’s who we are.

E. C. McKinley

State Overseer of Tennessee

Hendersonville, Tennessee

WWM JUNE 2011 27


NEWSHere &There

Called Out of Darkness

Tameka Scotton Shares Story of Healing

Tameka Scotton knows what it means to come out of the darkness and “. . . into His marvellous light”

(1 Peter 2:9). And she wants everyone to know it.

Longtime COGOP members and delegates of the International Assembly are familiar with the 39-year-old.

Tameka, an alumnus of Tomlinson College and the daughter of Ron and Gladys Scotton, has ministered in

churches and events through North America and beyond with her amazing musical talents.

On December 3, 2010, however, her life changed. In recovery for a routine medical procedure, Tameka’s

heart stopped. Although she was revived, she also suffered a stroke, adding to an already grave situation. With

her family and friends at her side, Tameka began a long journey back to her normal life, most notably with her

eyesight, which had been impaired because of the stroke. “I was unable to see anything,” she said. “I was in

darkness. And yet the Lord told me this was happening for reasons. That caused me to be still and be at peace.”

In therapy, Tameka became familiar with her medical records, as a way of coming to terms with what

happened. As she questioned the listing of “slow heart rate, flat line, and PEA,” she discovered that it meant

“pulseless electronic activity.” “That hit me so hard,” she said. “I had died. When I realized that, I just walked

into a private room and cried.” Still, in the midst of that fear, Tameka proclaimed, “I died, but God . . . I just

have to thank Him for reviving me. He didn’t have to do that, but He did.”

Although Tameka still has a few hurdles yet to cross, including white spots in her vision and settling back at

her own home, she is grateful for the hand of God she felt even through the darkness. She is also overcome

with emotion when speaking of the support of her family, friends, and church that rallied behind her in prayer.

God is real, and He allowed a chain of prayers to go across the world on my behalf,” she said. “I want the

people to know that the prayers have been and are being answered. Thank you everyone for the calls, prayers,

hugs from a distance, whatever your contribution. To God be the glory!”

FINLAND CONGO

Revival Meetings Spark

Members’ Deliverance

We had a wonderful week with Joseph “Bo” Robinson and

David Smith. We had special meetings in which our theme

was Luke 4:18, 19—“Let the People Be Delivered!” This was

definitely happening there. People were prayed for, and

they found deliverance in Jesus. We had four meetings and

approximately 70 different persons in attendance.

Bo and David ministered to our leadership team as well, and

that was very encouraging. God gave wisdom and direction

to us. We are so thankful for Bo and David and for those who

made it financially possible for them to come.

Some special prayer requests: Pray for the local church to be

birthed in Hameenlinna. Pray for the meeting place for monthly

worship services. Pray for wisdom on how to reach people in

Hameenlinna. Pray for common, united vision. Pray for three

young leaders, who are going to attend a youth camp and

training in the U.S. next June. Pray for the new believers, new

disciples, and new members. Pray that barrenness will be over

and that God will give a great harvest for us here.

—Tapio Sätilä, Overseer of Finland

28 WWM JUNE 2011

LOCAL/STATE/INTERNATIONAL

New Church-Plants and New Believers

Congo Brazzaville National Overseer Jean Pierre Mukendi

reports that new churches are being organized in Epinansa with

a founding membership of 50 and the official organization of

the church in Elouna with 96 members. Bishop Mukendi stated,

“We were told the Church of God of Prophecy is the first church

in the area and that I am the first missionary to come to Elouna.

Praise God!”

During a series of services in the Okah Village, Bishop

Mukendi was approached by a woman who repented of

practicing sorcery. She told him, “My father was a great killer

sorcerer, and me and my brothers and sisters were brought

up in sorcerer practice. Our father put by food something in

my womb and those of my sisters, which troubles and makes

us suffer a lot. Every night, we go in forest and enter in deep

pit to practice witchcraft. The Church of God Prophecy is my

first church to attend, and I confess and repent because I the

sorcerer and prostitute girl, I want from today [to] receive Jesus

Christ and to be saved and healed.”

WWW.WHITEWINGMESSENGER.ORG


MASSACHUSETTS

New Spanish

Church-Plant

Saturday, March 26, 2011, in the city of

Springfield, Massachusetts, a new Church

of God of Prophecy was organized in the

Northeast Hispanic Region, District 1. This

is the 47th church in the region; it was

established thanks to the work and efforts

of Pastor Henry García and his family,

who sowed God’s Word in hungry hearts

and began meeting through Bible studies

and services in homes with a group of

brothers and sisters.

Bishop Rahadamés Matos, Regional

Overseer, and Pastor José Ferreras,

District Overseer, were present at the

inauguration and were able to enjoy with

us a service full of worship and joy

for what our Lord is doing in the region.

Several pastors and representatives of the

local churches in the region honored this

celebration with their presence. Bishop

Anastasio Matamoros, pastor of the church

GEORGIA ALABAMA

Pastor Reports Healing of Leukemia

I wanted to take a minute and share with you what

happened in our Sunday morning service. During the altar call, a

grandmother asked that we pray for her four-year-old grandson

who had been diagnosed with leukemia. They had found 13

lumps on his body and were scheduled to go back to the doctor

to discuss treatment and to run more tests. She was able to

bring him to church, and we got him out of children’s church

to be anointed and prayed for. He went back to the doctor

again, and most of the lumps had already disappeared, and the

rest were dissolving away! I felt so strongly in my spirit while

we prayed for him that he had been healed, and by faith we

declared that during the service.

Part of this was so amazing to me because the little boy’s

name was Joshua. My little brother’s name is also Joshua, and

he was diagnosed and healed of leukemia at almost the same

exact age. I remember as I prayed for him, I said, “God, I have

seen You do this once before, and I believe You can and will do it

again!” Praise God for His infinite mercy!

—Pastor Jonathan Brown, Claxton COGOP

in Georgetown, Delaware, delivered a

powerful message. Brother Anastacio,

along with his wife Carmen, traveled

eight hours to join in this celebration.

Visitors included Pastor Rafael and María

Díaz, along with a group of brothers and

sisters from Dover, New Jersey; Pastor

Juan and Jacqueline Melo from Lawrence,

Massachusetts; Pastor Rubén and Virginia

Báez from Providence, Rhode Island;

Pastor Marisol and Marcos Severino from

Worcester, Massachusetts; Pastor Eduardo

and Estela Cáceres from Lynn, Massachusetts;

as well as ministers and district leaders,

missionaries, and evangelists.

A highlight at this event was the

presence of Reverend John Richards,

pastor of Christian Life Center, and his

wife. Reverend Richards offered words

of encouragement, affirmation, and

fellowship, motivating us to work and

make the city shine with God’s Word.

Reverend Richards affirmed the importance

of Hispanic churches because this ethnic

SEND NEWS ITEMS TO EDITORIAL@COGOP.ORG

Youth Doing Doorto-Door

Evangelism

At the Chickasaw, Alabama,

Church, some of our youth knocked

on doors in our neighborhood

giving out tracts and inviting people

to come visit us. One lady was sick,

and they prayed with her. This

touched her, and she plans to visit

us. Another came and said she

was so impressed by our youth,

and she could feel the Spirit of the

Lord as they came into her home.

We praise the Lord for the zeal

and willingness they have to do

something for the Lord. They

came back and shared stories

of their visits. They have ordered

Bibles to give out to those who

may not have one.

—Source: Alabama Update

group makes up approximately 54 percent

of the city’s total population. During the

service, brothers and sisters of the

newly organized church shared testimonies

of how Pastor Henry ministered to them.

Two young people from Dover, New

Jersey, presented choreography of a song

that spoke about the importance of the

Holy Spirit in the work that we do,

allowing a beautiful time for worship.

The Holy Spirit ministered to us in a

wonderful way when we all sang the song

titled, “Santo Jesús” (“Holy Jesus”) led by

Geraldine García.

At the end of the service, 29 people

became members of the church. Bishop

Rahadames Matos, Regional Overseer,

assisted by the local pastors, officiated the

ceremony with great enthusiasm. Pastors

Henry and Jacqueline García were appointed

pastors of the new church. We hope to

continue to see God’s grace in the lives of

our pastors and the Springfield Church.

WWM JUNE 2011 29


NEWSHere &There

Raymond Pruitt

Dr. Raymond McRay Pruitt, 88, died

Wednesday, March 9, 2011, at his home

in Oxford, Mississippi.

Dr. Pruitt was married to Aleda Pruitt.

He studied at the University of Hawaii

and the University of Tennessee before

receiving an honorary doctorate from

the Church of God Theological Seminary

in Cleveland, Tennessee. As a Sergeant,

Dr. Pruitt served in the United States

Army during World War II in the

Pacific Theatre.

Dr. Pruitt was an ordained minister

in the Church of God of Prophecy since

November 14, 1940, and authored

Fundamentals of the Faith, Disciplined

Disciples, and Present Help Sermon Outlines

and was involved in various other

writing projects for the Church of God of

Prophecy Sunday School Department.

MINISTERS

Maximiliano Lobos

Santa Lucia Cotz, Guatemala; March 24,

2011; licensed minister for 47 years.

Feliciano Ixpatá G.

Escuintia, Guatemala; March 28, 2011;

licensed minister for 50 years.

Laura E. Lord

California, Missouri; March 30, 2011;

licensed minister for 37 years.

William J. Norton

Taylorsville, Kentucky; April 4, 2011;

licensed minister for 33 years.

30 WWM JUNE 2011

In His Presence

Eugene Weakley

Eugene Weakley, 83 years, of

Murfreesboro, Tennessee, passed away

on March 28, 2011, after a short illness.

Bishop Weakley was married to Juanita

Faye Cowan Weakley on November 19,

1955. He attended Trevecca College in

Nashville and Cleveland State Community

College and Lee University in Cleveland,

Tennessee. He was a veteran of the

United States Army and served in World

War II from 1945–1947.

Bishop Weakley began his ministry in

1948, serving in various capacities

in the Church of God of Prophecy,

including pastor, State Overseer for

Tennessee, District Overseer, and Small

Group Ministries Director, among other

responsibilities. Even after retirement,

Bishop Weakley continued to minister

and faithfully served the Church for 63

years as a minister.

Gilbert Loraine Smith

Saint Augustine, Florida; April 4, 2011;

licensed minister for 56 years.

MEMBERS

Aimee Grace Cathy

Dickson, Tennessee; March 18, 2011.

(One out of four people who were

saved in Tent Revival at Burns in 1950.)

Isabelle A. Croyle

Karns City, Pennsylvania; April 4, 2011.

She was the mother of Bishop C. Jay Croyle.

Tanja Voznyuk

Kiev, Ukraine; April 8, 2011.

Tanja was the wife of Bishop Vitaliy

Voznyuk, Overseer of Ukraine.

LOCAL/STATE/INTERNATIONAL

ALABAMA

Short Creek

“Thy Kingdom come; Thy will be

done. . . .” As prayers go up, the

blessings come down. God has

been doing great and mighty

things in our midst. . . . Anointed

preaching, powerful study of

the Word, miracles of healing,

deliverance from strongholds,

repentant souls . . . we come in

anticipation of what God will do

next. Nothing is impossible! God

is also blessing us financially as

we are working to pay off our

renovation loan. Sister Kay Pate is

heading up our fund-raiser dinner

each Friday. This month, we raised

a little more than $1,500. To God

be the glory!

West Blocton

Praise the Lord! We are being

blessed continually with healings

and people turning their lives

over to God and seeking a closer

walk with Him. Prayers are being

answered amid a sweet and

powerful moving of the Holy Ghost.

Red Bay

Our church began January with

a 21-day corporate fast. This was

the first time we had done this as

a church, and it was a humbling

experience. We ended the fast

with a Celebration Service, which

included worship, drama, and

The Williams Family. This was a

celebration for what God is going

to do during 2011 in our church

and individually.

WWW.WHITEWINGMESSENGER.ORG


MESSAGES

DeWayne Hamby, Managing Editor

A Beggar in the

King’s Court

I love to travel. One of the highlights of

my life is discovering new locations and

soaking in the beauty of the world that

God has created. Sure, there are some

parts more exciting than others. Moving

through an airport security line is low on

my list of fun activities, but arriving at the

destination helps erase that anxiety.

During one vacation, I was particularly

bubbly and upbeat, mostly due to the

incredible savings we received when we

booked our trip. Imagine paying for the

janitor’s closet and getting the king’s

quarters, and you get a clue of how I

felt. I was walking around in paradise,

determined not to miss a moment. I even

told my wife, “I feel like one of those

beggars that got invited to the king’s feast

because no one else showed up.”

You’ll remember that Jesus told the

parable of the Great Banquet in Matthew

22. The king had prepared a wedding feast

for his son, only to be disappointed in

those who ignored his invitation. When he

realized those who were invited weren’t

found worthy and did not treat his

invitation with due respect, he filled up

the banquet hall with random attendees.

While I enjoyed my moment in the sun,

I’m at a loss for creating a winning

and successful life plan that allows me

access to eternal life.

not everyone shared my

enthusiasm. I could see it

in their faces and even

overheard random complaints. This place

wasn’t quite as nice as they thought it

could be or the service wasn’t as detailoriented

as they would have liked. I knew

many would hit the Internet to offer

scathing reviews while I would relate my

own experience as glowing. We shared

the same location and most likely identical

accommodations, but our assessments

were polar opposites. Why?

There are people who think they

deserve the best and people who know

that they don’t. I landed on the latter end

of that, especially in that instance. It was a

random blessing that placed us there, not

anything I could have orchestrated on my

own. I hadn’t invested the same amount

of time or resources that some of them

had, but I was enjoying the benefits all the

same. It reminds me of another parable

found in Matthew 20 of the workers in

the vineyard.

“So when evening had come, the

owner of the vineyard said to his steward,

‘Call the laborers and give them their

wages, beginning with the last to the

first.’ And when those came who were

hired about the eleventh hour, they each

received a denarius. But when the first

came, they supposed that they would

receive more; and they likewise received

each a denarius. And when they had

received it, they complained against the

landowner, saying, ‘These last men have

worked only one hour, and you made

them equal to us who have borne the

burden and the heat of the day.’ But he

answered one of them and said, ‘Friend,

I am doing you no wrong. Did you not

agree with me for a denarius? Take what

is yours and go your way. I wish to give to

this last man the same as to you. Is it not

lawful for me to do what I wish with my

own things? . . .’” (vv. 8–15 NKJV).

God never said this life would be fair.

Things are not just going to “even out.”

I’m glad because I’m at a loss for creating

a winning and successful life plan that

allows me access to eternal life. Left to

my own devices and resources, I would

surely fail.

It’s the grace of God that makes all the

difference. I need to constantly remind

myself of that to maintain the proper

perspective and have an attitude of

gratitude to the One who is giving me

exactly what I don’t deserve.

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