Be strong and courageous, because you will lead these people to inherit the land I swore to their ancestors to give them. “Be strong and very courageous. Be careful to obey all the law my servant Moses gave you; do not turn from it to the right or to the left, that you may be successful wherever you go. Joshua 1:6-7 (NIV)
The 99th General Assembly of the Church of God in Michigan is Friday, November 1 and Saturday, November 2, 2019. We will again be at the Crowne Plaza Lansing West. Our theme is “Legacy.” Our Focus will be on Passing the torch of leadership to a new generation.
The Crowne Plaza Lansing West is a beautiful venue with state of the art exercise room, pool, game room, and indoor basketball court. We believe your time at the General Assembly will be reviving and refreshing. Once again this year we are handling both the hotel accommodations and General Assembly registration, underwriting the additional costs and eliminating your sales tax. Be sure to register for your hotel room(s) through our office. If you register directly with the hotel you will not get the room discounts. We have negotiated a great price for hotel accommodations. Even though we have a large number of rooms reserved, we expect them to be taken quickly. Please register with us and get your room(s) reserved before October 14, 2019. Your registration fee includes accommodations, a continental breakfast upon arrival, lunch on Friday, and continental breakfast on Saturday. There are significant discounts if you register early. Register online or use the registration form. Registration via credit card is only available online using PayPal.
Our Assembly will be a time of celebration this year. We are celebrating Dr. Jones' completion of 18 years of service in the Service Center, and Goldie Kurtzhals' 33 years of service. We will also be celebrating the installation of our new State Pastor, Rev. Mark Richardson. Dr. Jones will speak on Friday and Rev. Richardson will speak on Saturday as we celebrate our past and look forward to our future. Because of the special festivities, all Assembly Business will be done on Friday morning and Friday afternoon Those presented for ordination will speak on Friday afternoon, while on Saturday we will celebrate significant ministry accomplishments, hear from Rev. Richardson and have a service of installation for him.
Our worship is being led on Friday morning by Rev. Chad Harlan and musicians from First Church in St. Joseph. Friday evening the worship team and ecclesiastical dance team from Lighthouse Community in Redford will lead, and then on Saturday morning The Messers; Stephanie, Angie, and Rachel, three sisters and their mom have sung and played in venues across Michigan. Their beautiful harmony and heart felt worship will inspire us all. They grew up in the Breckenridge, Michigan area and Angie is worship leader at the Alma Church of God.
There will be no conferences this year due to all the special activities and as usual we will have a hall filled with vendors to promote ministries and help for our congregations.
If you have new resolutions or business for the Assembly please contact our Business Committee Chair, Harold Lockley, (313) 835-5814, or email email@example.com. We are a delegated Assembly, below are prescriptions for who may represent your congregation. It is vital for all of our churches to be fully represented.
One layperson chosen as an official representative by each Michigan Church of God congregation with an average weekly attendance to 100; two laypersons from each congregation with an average weekly attendance of 101–500; three laypersons from each congregation with an average weekly attendance of 501–1000; and four laypersons from each congregation with an average weekly attendance of 1,001 and above.
We look forward to a great celebration of ministry as we meet together.
Again, please register early, as we expect a great turnout for our 99th General Assembly!
Your Servant, Rev. Dr. William H. Jones, State Pastor
Rev. Dr. William H. Jones
General Assembly State Pastor
Dr. Jones has served the Church of God in Michigan since January, 2002 as State Pastor. During his tenure, he has restructured the State's Organization and spearheaded the focus on helping Church of God congregations in the state move from decline and plateau to growth. His heart's desire is to see every Church of God congregation in Michigan changing its community through the love and message of Jesus Christ. He focuses much of his time now on Congregational Redevelopment, and Church Planting. Nationally, he has served on the Reconstituted Board of Directors of the Church Extension. Dr. Jones has had the privilege to teach and preach in many countries around the world including, Great Britain, Germany, Canada, Trinidad and Tobago, and Honduras.
Bill has served the Church of God in Michigan as Senior Pastor of the Sears Church of God and the Mio Church of God. At both churches he was instrumental in leading the congregations in both numerical and spiritual growth. He is past Chair of the General Assembly in Michigan, and has also served on the state’s Youth Ministry Board, as well as chairing both the State Program Committee and Business Committee. He is past chair of the National Regional Pastors Association of the Church of God. Academically, Dr. Jones is a graduate of Anderson University with a B.A. in Mathematics and Education; Anderson School of Theology with a Master of Divinity; and Grace Theological Seminary with Doctor of Ministry Degree. However, most of all he has the heart and calling of a pastor. His primary spiritual gifts are exhortation, pastor and leadership.
He is married to Jalene; his wife of 44 years. They have two grown children, Jaela who is married to Nick along with their granddaughter Sylvie, from Grand Rapids, and James who is married to Christy, along with their two grandchildren, Dock and Charlie who live in Troy.
Rev. Mark K. Richardson
Incoming 2020 General Assembly State Pastor
Rev. Mark Kevin Richardson was born and raised in Akron, Ohio. He is the son of Harrison and Josephine Richardson. He is a first generation Church of God member, and minister, having grown up in the Catholic Church. He was educated in Akron through graduation from Archbishop Hoban High School. He attended Mount Union College, in Alliance, Ohio, graduating in 1979, with a Bachelor of Arts in Accounting, with a minor in Communications. Upon graduation, he worked for the IBM Corporation, from 1979 through 1983. While working in the computer industry from 1985 through 1996, Rev. Richardson developed as a lay minister under the pastoral leadership of Rev. Dr. Ronald J. Fowler in Akron. When his job required relocation to Maryland, from 1989 through 1991, he continued to develop as a lay minister under the pastoral leadership of Rev. Marc Farmer, of the Oakland Mills Church of God in Columbia, MD. Upon his relocation back to Akron in 1992, he resumed his development under Rev. Fowler. Rev, Richardson was ordained in 1994, at the Arlington Church of God.
He came to a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ under the ministry of Rev. Dr. Ronald J. Fowler, of the Arlington Church of God, in Akron, Ohio, in 1981. He experienced the call on his life for Pastoral Ministry in late 1983, and began the process of preparation for ministry immediately. After a brief time of study at the Anderson University School of Theology, Rev. Mark returned to Akron to develop in ministry while returning to work in the computer industry for Digital Equipment Corporation. In September of 1984 he married the love of his life, Sharon, to whom he has been married for over 34 years. They have two children whom they consider great blessings from God, Anna and Joshua, and another great blessing in grandson, Akhil.
In 1996 he answered the call to his first pastorate, the Lincoln Avenue Church of God in Pittsburgh, PA, where he was the Senior Pastor until July 2002. Since 2002, Rev. Richardson has served as the founding Senior Pastor of the New Life Church of God, in Pittsburgh, PA, a thriving congregation reaching into Pittsburgh and its eastern suburbs. During his time in Western Pennsylvania, he served in the state ministry, as a member, and chair, of the Credentialing Services Team, and as Team Leader of the Church Health Team. Rev. Richardson also served as a member of the Ministries Council of Western Pennsylvania Ministries. For nearly two years from June 2012 through January 2014, Rev. Richardson served as a Co-Director of Leadership Development and Church Multiplication with Church of God Ministries in Anderson, IN, working for the General Director of Church of God Ministries. Currently Rev. Richardson is the President of the General Assembly of WPA Ministries of the Church of God and Chair of the Ministries Council. He is currently a member of the Board of Servant Solutions of the Church of God. Rev. Richardson is also a Coach with the Leadership Focus Ministry of the Church of God.
Lunch Sponsored by Servant Solutions - Rev. Jim O'Bold, Jeff Jenness, and Bob Haymond
Jim joined Servant Solutions in April 2011, after serving five years as a member of their Board of Trustees. Previously, Jim spent 24 years in banking, where he managed multiple branches, provided lending to the small business market, and managed community bank initiatives.
Jim received a bachelor’s degree in management from Anderson University in Anderson, Indiana, and an MBA from the University of Indianapolis. He is a Certified Financial Planner (CFP), a Certified Retirement Planning Consultant (CRPC), has served as an Executive Pastor at Westlake Church of God in Indianapolis, and was ordained in 2012. His pastoral role also allows him to serve on several teams with Indiana Ministries of the Church of God (Chairman for Investment Committee, Church Health and Consultation, etc…). He loves serving the church in these multiple capacities, which he feels brings unique perspective in his ability to serve in other areas of ministry.
Jim has been married to his beautiful bride, Felisia, for 31 years and has three sons, two daughter-in-laws, two granddaughters, and a grandson. He enjoys his family most of all, then golf, basketball, knock-down drag-out ping-pong matches with his sons, and frequent motorcycle trips with Felisia.
Jeff served Servant Solutions as President since 1993. In this new role as Chief Strategy Officer, he will be developing, communicating, executing, and sustaining corporate strategic initiatives. He came to the staff after a career in the banking field. His responsibilities include direct contact with the Church through speaking and providing conferences and seminars to assist Church of God employees with finances and retirement planning. He is charged with oversight of the Retirement Plan and its strategic initiatives, programmatic planning, and accountability of office functions to the Trustees and to the General Assembly through the Ministries Council. He currently serves on the Steering Committee of the Church Alliance, an advocacy group that works with Congress toward the best interests of ministers and church workers in areas of retirement planning and health care issues. Jeff and his wife, Debbie, reside in Noblesville and have been married for 38+ years. They enjoy following the activities of their three adult children and two grandchildren.
With more than 17 years of experience in managing retirement plans, Bob brings vast knowledge and personal expertise to the table with a passion for helping participants understand the unique financial/tax aspects and the importance of having enough in retirement. Bob is a Certified Financial Planner, who has spent most of his career working in a non-profit organization.
Bob and his wife, Lisa, have been married for thirty-five years. They have two children and four grandchildren. He is a graduate of Taylor University. His passion includes being a part of several ministry activities; local church plant, youth, and missions. Bob and his wife enjoy the outdoors and traveling with family and friends.
Friday Morning Worship
Rev. Chad Harlan, First Church of God, Saint Joseph
Chad Harlan joined the leadership team at First Church in January 2012. Chad oversees the worship across all First Church campuses and leads worship specifically at the St. Joseph Campus. He has been leading worship since 2002 and enjoys connecting people with God. In his spare time, he enjoys spending time with his family and riding in his Jeep.
Friday Evening Worship
Lighthouse Community Church of God
Saturday Morning Worship
Rachel (Left), Stephanie (Center), Angie (Right)
The Messers are comprised of three sisters who grew up in the Church of God. They have a rich heritage in music, having sung in their home church, other churches, and camp meetings.
Angie lives in St. Johns with her husband and three children, and works at Central Michigan University. She attends the Alma First Church of God.
Stephanie lives in Jackson and works for Consumers Energy. She attends the Jackson First Church of the Nazarene.
Rachel lives in Portage and works at Haverhill Elementary as a kindergarten teacher. She attends The Bridge in Portage.
While distance keeps them from singing together much, it truly is a joy when they are given the opportunity to do so.
Child care is provided at no cost during all meetings and worship sessions of the General Assembly. Please let the Service Center (800) 369-5890 know of your child care needs prior to your arrival at the General Assembly.