Church of God of Prophecy Gears Up for 100th Historic Gathering
July 18 through 22 meeting in Chattanooga to be marked by historic celebration, strong international and racial diversity, and capacity attendance
The Church of God of Prophecy, a Pentecostal denomination reporting membership of a million constituents around the globe, will hold its biennial International Assembly in Chattanooga on July 18 through 22.
The Assembly will draw a capacity crowd from around the globe to celebrate the growth of the Pentecostal denomination.
The primary role of the Assembly is to conduct business meetings for the denomination, and those sessions will take place on Wednesday morning and afternoon. However, the event will include nightly worship services as well as workshops and special activities targeted to children, teenagers, mission workers, pastors, and members.
Speakers will include Bishop Sam N. Clements, general overseer for the COGOP; Dr. Cathy Payne, Global Missions Ministries coordinator; Bishop Jeffery Davis, state overseer for North Carolina; Dr. Tim McCaleb, general presbyter of the Asia/Oceania area, and Bishop Ernesto Velasco, pastor of Centro Cristiano Amor, Fe y Esperanza Church, Greensboro, North Carolina. Special guests for the event include recording artist Tauren Wells and Dr. Harold Hunter, director of the International Pentecostal Holiness Archives.
The 2018 Assembly will be noteworthy for the following:
Historic Gathering: The first Assembly of the Church was held outside of Murphy, North Carolina, in 1906 with 21 in attendance. This year’s event, with a projected attendance of 8,000–12,000 will feature dramatic recreations of that first meeting. The 2018 Assembly is also significant since it is the first time it has returned to the Chattanooga area after being held in nearby Cleveland, Tennessee, until 1991.
This will be the first time returning to the area since 1991, having convened in previous locations such as Kentucky, Texas, North Carolina, and most recently, Florida. Based on hotel reservations and interest, leaders are projecting an attendance of 8,000-12,000, placing the event as the second-largest event to be held in Chattanooga, according to the Chattanooga Convention and Visitor’s Bureau.
Diversity of Attendees
With a majority of the denomination’s membership being from outside of the United States, the biennial meeting is marked by strong international representation. Of the 10,000 expected, leaders estimate more than 2,000 will be of international origin, representing such countries as Australia, Finland, South Korea, Dominican Republic, Nigeria, Egypt, Nepal, and the Bahamas.
Through the week, events will highlight the denomination’s diversity, which was noted in the Encyclopedia of Religion in the South as the “most racially inclusive at the leadership level in the USA.”
It will include a Celebration of Nations on Wednesday evening showcasing all 135 flags of countries the church does ministry in as well as three new nations (to be revealed on Wednesday evening); a Mission Breakfast on Saturday morning allowing donors to interact with mission workers; and the Mission Encounter on Friday afternoon, which will include 92 booths with cultural artifacts, music, and fashion from around the world.
Beyond the onsite activities, the Assembly general sessions will also be broadcast in high definition via an interactive webcast at the church’s site cogop.org/assembly. Based on statistics, the website audience is expected to exceed the in-person attendees.
About the Church of God of Prophecy
The Church of God of Prophecy — whose core values include prayer, the harvest (evangelism), leadership development, and stewardship — is a vibrant, worldwide body of believers, united in worship, working hand-in-hand to share God’s love and a message of hope to the broken-hearted. The Church of God of Prophecy has more than a million members, worshipping in over 10,000 churches and missions in 135 nations of the world. The majority of its global membership is outside of North America. For more information, visit cogop.org.
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