By Carl Stagner
How much do you know about what goes on inside the office at Church of God Ministries? Who conducts necessary office work so others may travel the world with the hope of Christ? It’s the behind-the-scenes work that enables Church of God Ministries to carry out the work of Christ. When you support the unrestricted portion of the World Ministries Budget, you support our missionaries, our projects at home and abroad, and so much more. In the following interview, get to know one of the faces behind the scenes. Her name is Anissa Hilligoss, and she’s worked for Church of God Ministries for ten years.
What is your role at Church of God Ministries?
Anissa: My role at Church of God Ministries is gift data entry specialist in the accounting department. That means I receive the donations that come in by mail, and I prepare the deposit. I identify the specific funds supported (basic budget, missionary, or project), donor information, and record it. Then I provide data entry for gifts from churches and individuals. I print the giving statements and mail them to donors for tax purposes. Over the years, I’ve also worked for Christian Women Connection and Warner Press.
Accounting is about as behind-the-scenes as it gets. How is it is essential to the work of Church of God Ministries?
Anissa: The accounting department is vital to the work of Church of God Ministries. It’s about stewardship and donor intent. There is more to accounting than just my part, and the whole purpose of accounting is to manage and report how the funds are being used. Speaking of my position alone, it is putting the funds that are received where the donor intends it to go, whether to the basic budget, to a missionary, or to a project. Without the accounting team, funds intended to go to a specific place would end up in one pot.
How were you introduced to the Church of God?
Anissa: I was first introduced to the Church of God when my brother started going to church with his friends, Jack and Jerry Hilligoss. Their dad, Bill Hilligoss, was the pastor at Florida Station Church of God (Anderson, Indiana) at that time. Sometimes I would get to go with them to Sunday school and church services. It ended up that I liked Jerry, so in high school I started dating him. Then after high school, I married him, and we moved to Florida so he could go to Warner University (then Warner Southern College) for ministry education. We moved back to Indiana and he was the associate pastor of youth at Florida Station Church of God. Then we felt called to go to the Church of God in Saratoga, Indiana. Florida Station ultimately was without a senior pastor, and almost closed its doors. Jerry felt like he was called to go back to Florida Station Church of God. So, we did. We’ve been there nineteen years! My brother-in-law, Jack Hilligoss, also pastored Florida Station Church of God for a time, then went to Warner University (then Warner Southern). He is now the pastor at HighPoint Church of God in Lake Wales, Florida. I think he’s been there about eighteen years!
What are your primary responsibilities at Florida Station Church of God?
Anissa: I believe my primary responsibility at Florida Station is to take care of my husband and family as he pastors the church. If there is anything I can do to help him, I do my best to do it. I’ve had several roles in the church. I’ve been over the nursery and Junior Church. I’ve created and printed the bulletins, newsletters, and directories. I am now involved in our Silent Messengers Ministry, where we use sign language in songs during church services, dramas, and fundraisers. We’ve signed for community events, too. I really enjoy it, and it’s so beautiful to watch! I’m glad to see how this ministry has grown at our church.
What are one or two of your favorite worship songs? What hobbies do you enjoy?
Anissa: I have a lot of favorite worship songs, but if I can only pick two, here they are: “Great I Am” (Phillips, Craig & Dean) and “One Thing Remains” (Kristian Stanfill). Outside of work I like to watch my boys play their sports. I enjoy playing volleyball, softball, and golf with our church, and I love getting together with our family to visit.
What do you appreciate most about Church of God Ministries and the Church of God movement?
Anissa: I have worked for Church of God Ministries for about ten years. I appreciate the fact that if I am struggling with life, they will pray for me. They will come and be there for me. That’s a family! I enjoy working with all my coworkers, even though I don’t work closely with all of them. The Church of God has molded and shaped my family and me into the people we are today. My oldest son Jerad plays guitar and sings in our worship services with our praise team. My youngest son Seth helps lead in Junior Church. Then he mentors them as they come into the youth group. I love seeing how God works!
Church of God Ministries relies on your financial support of the unrestricted portion of the World Ministries Budget to enable basic, necessary operations to continue—like ensuring your gifts go precisely where you intend them to go. Support the behind-the-scenes work of the Church of God today at www.jesusisthesubject.org/world-ministries-budget. Learn more about the Church of God at www.JesusIsTheSubject.org.