Brooklyn Bridge, New York City
By Carl Stagner
Home to more than 8.6 million people, New York City is the most populous city in the United States. The “Big Apple,” as it’s commonly called, is also the mission field for the Church of God of East New York, a congregation which has had a growing influence on the borough of Brooklyn for ninety years. Before a portion of the Church of God descends on the “city that never sleeps” next September 18–20 for the third-and-final Regional Convention 2020, ministry leaders from across the city and places far beyond will return for an anniversary homecoming at the church pastored for the last thirty-eight years by Clifton McDowell. A recent interview with Pastor McDowell shed light on what healthy, enduring ministry looks like among millions of neighbors in such a diverse, fast-paced, and densely populated environment. Continue reading
Posted in All Church of God, Church of God Convention, Northeast
Tagged 2020 Regional Convention, 2020 Regionals, anniversary, Big Apple, big city, bowl-a-thon, bowling, Brooklyn, Church of God of East New York, city, Clifton McDowell, COGENY, community, concert, Convention 2020, diversity, ethnicity, homecoming, kingdom partnerships, Ministries Council, multi-ethnic, multicultural, NACOG, National Association, National Association of the Church of God, New York, New York City, NY, NYC, partnership, presiding elder, Regional Convention 2010, Regional Conventions 2010, regionals, Regionals 2020, The Way of Jesus, unity, urban, urban ministries, urban ministry, urban missions, Way of Jesus, worship
By Carl Stagner
Four hundred years have passed since the first recorded African landing in English-occupied North America. It was in 1619 at Point Comfort, now part of Fort Monroe in Hampton, Virginia, that twenty-some Africans from Angola stepped off the transatlantic White Lion and set the stage for the slaves of the subsequent two-and-a-half centuries of American history. Joynes Road Church of God in Hampton has played an integral role to-date in the official commemoration of the pivotal events that unfolded so long ago. Though the special activities and events began during Black History Month this year, community and social involvement is nothing new for Joynes Road. Pastor Simeon Green provides a closer look. Continue reading
Posted in All Church of God, Northeast
Tagged 1619, 1619 Commemorative Commission, African, African American, Africans, American history, anniversary, black, black history, Black History Month, celebration, community, ecumenical, ethnicity, Fort Monroe, Hampton, Jesus Is the Subject, Joynes Rd Church of God, Joynes Road Church of God, multicultural, observance, Point Comfort, race, race relations, racism, Simeon Green, slavery, slaves, society, VA, Virginia
Digging up the time capsule.
By Carl Stagner
At 5536 N. 6th Street in Phoenix, Arizona, you’ll find sacred grounds. On these grounds, souls have been won to Christ. Believers have been baptized. Lives have been transformed. Memories—of both challenge and triumph—have been made. Of course, it’s not the address, the parking lot, or the building that make it so special; it’s the Lord, whose providential hand has preserved that space for his glorious work for three decades. And it’s the believers themselves, who had worshiped at another location even longer—since the 1940s. Though the name over the door has changed over the years, the Lord over all has remained the same. In view of The Gathering Place Church of God positioning itself for expansion, congregants from generations past-to-present recently reunited to unearth a time capsule, whose contents not only bring back cherished memories, but speak of an unchanging, eternally faithful God. Continue reading
Posted in All Church of God, Western
Tagged anniversary, Arizona, AZ, CCV, celebration, ceremony, chairs, Christ's Church of the Valley, community, creative approaches, discovery, heritage, history, Mexico, North Hills Church of God, partnership, Paul Johnson, pews, Phoenix, reminiscence, seating, special activities, The Gathering Place, time capsule
@home Church’s first anniversary celebration.
By Patrick Nachtigall
When Samir Salibi moved to Paris, France, as a twelve-year-old, non-Christian immigrant from Lebanon, little did he know that one day, two decades later, he would be coming to the rescue of many migrants and displaced people himself. But that is exactly what happened, and on December 2, members of the Three Worlds missionary team of the Church of God in Europe and the Middle East were in Paris to celebrate the first anniversary of this revolutionary new ministry. Continue reading
Posted in All Church of God, Global Strategy
Tagged 3W, @home church, anniversary, At Home, AtHome, celebration, city, Europe and the Middle East, Europe-Middle East, France, immigrant, international, migrant, Paris, Patrick Nachtigall, refugee crisis, Samir Salibi, Three Worlds, urban
Photo: Benny Santiago embraces Hattie Downer at her 100th birthday celebration. Benny’s was one of countless lives changed because of the ministry of Hattie Downer. Photo credit: Richard LaGuerre.
By Carl Stagner
She was the first African American woman to serve the Church of God as a home missionary. She traveled up and down the East Coast, starting Sunday schools and other children’s programs for churches. Ultimately, she made her base of ministry operations on the crime-stricken, drug-infested streets of Brooklyn, New York. There she preached the gospel to local characters with nicknames like “Killer” and “Capone.” She even extended grace multiple times to delinquents who would break in and steal from the church she led. This pillar of faith, rock of endurance, and epitome of compassion has a name: Hattie Downer. She celebrated her one hundredth birthday in September, and many who have been touched by her ministry came to honor her and share stories of personal impact. Continue reading
“The Shelter is a home for orphan girls and those in need, continuously operating in India for one hundred years,” Andrew Lyon explains. “At the centennial anniversary celebration on September 1, 2014, hundreds of women and their families streamed in to thank God for the way their lives have been changed.” In this video, missionaries Don and Caroline Armstrong share reflections of their experience while attending the celebration.
By Carl Stagner
In 1913, a train collided with George Gleckler’s car, abruptly ending the life of his wife and son. Though his remaining children survived, the pain was nearly unbearable for this brother of Emma Kardatzke. Yet out of the throes of such tragedy, the Church of God in Elmore, Ohio, was born. From the depths of despair, the Lord has led the congregation to celebration time and time again; only this time, the celebration was extra special. This time, the church came together to mark one hundred years of ministry. Continue reading