EVERETT D. GIBSON was born in Heflin, Louisiana, and is a 1951 cum laude mathematics graduate of Southern University and A&M College, Baton Rouge, Louisiana. He is a U.S. Air Force and Korean Veteran, obtaining the rank of captain. He received his M.S. degree from the University of Southern California (USC) and his A.M. and Ph.D. degrees from the University of Illinois at Urbana. His early teaching career began in Bienville and Webster Parishes and concluded at Southern University as Professor Emeritus and football historian. Presently, he is a commissioner and was recently inducted into the Southern University Sports Hall of Fame. He is a recipient of the MLK Drum Major Service and Lifetime Achievements Awards. He is the co-author of one mathematics textbook and several articles in professional journals. He has twice received graduate chapters Omega Psi Phi Man-of-the-Year Awards. Dr. Gibson is considered an expert not only on Southern University football, but also on the Southwestern Athletic Conference (SWAC), Black College Football, and the Bayou Classic. During the last sixty years, he has been an eyewitness to many of these historic games.
Deacon Ministry – Deacon-Trustee Everett D. Gibson, Chairperson
The Deacon Ministry of Greater First Church has primarily responsibility to work with the Pastor for the spiritual and total welfare of the members of the congregation. Subsequently, deacons are given authority to serve by the pastor’s appointment after meeting and satisfying scriptural qualifications (Acts 6:1-3). At Greater First, there is a common bond between the pastor and the deacons. There may be occasions when the deacons need to advise the pastor of a problem or a potential problem in the church. The pastor always welcomes the observations.
Deaconess Ministry – Deaconess Sis. Debbie D. Sigers, Chairperson
The mission of the Deaconess Ministry is to assist the Pastor and Deacon Ministry in meeting the needs and promoting the spiritual growth of Greater First Church. The position of the deaconess embodies the concept of serving in the church. The Greek work, “diakonos” is translated “servant” and is used to refer to the office of deacon. It does not distinguish between genders. However, for practical reasons and to give more attention to the needs of women, the Greater First Church makes a distinction in the role and duties of deacons and deaconesses.
Trustee Ministry – Trustee Bro. Tom Withers, III (Atty), Chairperson
The Trustee Ministry of Greater First Church has the fiscal responsibility to oversee and manage the church’s financial resources to include the budget planning, monitoring, and review process; hiring of personnel; provide security; and oversee and maintain the physical structure of the church to make sure that the proper maintenance and use of church properties (including the grounds, parking lot, building and equipment) are kept up to proper standards in order to assist the church in fulfilling her Mission.
Christian Education Ministry, Deacon Richard Craven, Chairperson
The primary purpose is obedient response to the Great Commission: Making disciples who will fulfill the fivefold mission of the church —evangelism/ missions, worship, discipleship, ministry, and fellowship. The goal is to teach others to know Christ, and His power. Ministry units include: Sunday Church School, Mid-week Bible Study Fellowship, New Member Orientation, Recognition and Assimilation Ministry, Nursery (TBD), S.E.E.D.S./Outreach, Leadership Development, Stewardship of Time, Talent and Treasure, Doretha Davis Memorial Scholarship, Vacation Bible School, and First Time Visitor’s Ministry.
Gatekeeper’s Ministry, Trustee-Bro. Gregory Williams, Chairperson, Bro. Lattimore Ball, Vice-Chairperson
The mission of the Gatekeeper’s Ministry is to establish, utilize and implement best practices to ensure the safety and security of the Greater First Church membership, leadership, staff, volunteers, visitors and facilities as congregants faithfully, without fear of being molested, carry out the Great Commission of Jesus Christ which is to seek and to save those that are lost. Objectives include: to develop, implement and monitor a Comprehensive Watch and Pray Emergency Operation Plan around five mission areas to include: Prevention, Protection, Mitigation, Response, and Recovery.
Health and Wellness Ministry – Sis. Nova Brandon, Chairperson
Our mission is to embody the spirit of Christ’s healing ministry as he exemplified in his public ministry by supporting and providing healing and caring throughout the church and community, with compassion, through informational and training workshops, seminars, prayer breakfasts, health conferences and other community targeted events to include: Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure, and Greater First Church sponsored Annual Health Fair, Worship in Pink Breast Cancer Awareness program and fundraiser, Prostate Cancer Awareness Day, and other life enhancing activities and events.
Missions and Outreach Ministry, Deacon-Trustee Edward Augustus, Jr. and Deaconess Theda Augustus, Co-Chairpersons
The Missions and Outreach Ministry serves as an umbrella and coordinating unit for Outreach Ministries within Greater First Church to include: Prison Ministry; Door-to-Door Evangelism; Home and Foreign Mission; Benevolence Ministry; Radio and Tape Ministry to the sick and shut-in, nursing homes and jails and prisons (Pastor Kelley’s Sermon Audio CDs can be accessed through KGCM National Radio Ministries Free Radiocast: www.Spreaker.com, and www.kgcmpastors.podomatic.com; and Video of Pastor Kelley preaching on YouTube at http://youtu.be/PPQEJiTlm9c); and Intercessory Prayer Ministry. Its mission is to assist the Pastor in transforming the membership into Doers of the Word of GOD, and not just hearers only, exemplified through evangelism and outreach efforts to win persons to spiritual fellowship with our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
Music Ministry – Bro. Jerris Cade, Minister of Music,
Bro. Anthony Smith, President, Adult Choir
The mission of the Music Ministry is to glorify Jesus Christ by allowing Him to use the Music Ministry as a tool working through each choir member. It strives to strengthen and enhance the spiritual experience of the members and visitors of the Greater First Church through hymns and songs in particular to: prepare the hearts of the congregation for the preaching of the Word of God; bless the members of the congregation and members of the choir alike through the singing of psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs; lead the congregation in singing; be an example to the other members of the church by the testimony of their lives; and provide an avenue of service to the members of Greater First Church.
Pastor’s Care and Relations Ministry – Deaconess-Trustee Lois Marie Washington, Chairperson
The Pastor’s Care and Relations Ministry (PCRM) exists to provide on-going assistance to the Pastor and First Lady as they provide spiritual leadership and guidance to Greater First Church. The PCRM is a service ministry that provides direct personal support to the Pastor. Includes hosting activities for the Pastor and First Lady during special days and occasions; sponsor activities or events to support the ANTHONY KELLEY ENDOWED SCHOLARSHIP established in his honor by Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary located on the campus of Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois for African-American students preparing for prison ministry; and fundraisers to allow him to represent the church at National, State, District, and local denominational conventions, conferences and board meetings of which Greater First Church holds membership. The call to pastor a church is a tremendous responsibility that affects the entire family and at times some of the most basic needs of the First Family may be unattended or may get neglected for the sake of the ministry, the Pastor’s Care and Relations Ministry considers it a joy to be able to help with these challenges.
Usher Ministry, Sis. Marilyn Baker-Guy, Chairperson, Sis. Louvenia Johnese, Supervisor, Youth and Young Adult Ushers
The mission of the Usher Ministry is to serve the Lord Jesus Christ, and to assist the Pastor and church with the orderly functioning of assemblies during worship, special events and activities, and are in accord through our service, with Psalms 84:10, “I had rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God, than to dwell in the tents of wickedness”. As In 1 Chronicles 15: 23-24 Greater First Church ushers stand as “Door-keepers” where they serve with class, pride and dignity. They are the ones who introduce others into a room and make the members and visitors feel comfortable and lend spiritual dignity to the whole church service. The usher ministry helps the Pastor and promotes the worship by being prompt, courteous, and using tact, reminding worshippers of proper protocol and church etiquette.
Youth and Young Adult Action Ministry – Sis. Lois Shanelle Johnson and Sis. Auria Lombard, Co-Chairpersons
The Youth and Young Adult Ministry of Greater First Church is committed to love, nurture, inspire, and equip our youth and young adults ages 4-35 to be faithful, lifelong disciples of Jesus Christ who reach out to the community and beyond. We strive to create a life-changing ministry in which our youth and young adults reflect spiritual depth from a growing personal relationship with Jesus Christ. This change will be manifested in the daily lives and activities including worship, study, discipleship, Annual Youth Revival and Conference, and service to the church and community.
Leadership Advisory Council – Sis. Alleen K. Carey, President
The mission of the Leadership Advisory Council (LAC) is to coordinate and evaluate the work of the organizations (ministries, auxiliaries, etc.) of Greater First Church. Evaluation provides a means of assessing the effective stewardship of the resources of leadership, energies and commitments to the mission and programs of the church. The Leadership Advisory Council is composed of all appointed and approved leaders in the church (including paid staff such as the Minister of Music and Church Secretary) and meets quarterly on Wednesday after the second Sunday in January, April, July, and October. Auxiliaries and ministry leaders are required to prepare quarterly reports for presentation and review each quarter. The LAC holds a special meeting in December to prepare the Church Annual Calendar for the coming year. An Annual Year End Fellowship Dinner is prepared and served by the Greater First Church Hospitality Committee. Evidenced-based practice has shown that the more time spent in planning will produce more positive results in reaching mission and ministry goals.
Progressive Out-of-the-Box Strategic Planning and Capacity Building Committee – Trustee Bro. Gregory Williams, Chairperson
The OTB Committee works closely with the GFCB Leadership Advisory Council Members to assist leaders with the orderly functionality, planning and fund-raising implementation phases of their ministries with Out-of-the-Box (OTB), or non-traditional methods and strategies in line with church policy, polity, protocol and procedure, to insure better and more effective outcomes for their ministries’ goals and objectives.
Hospitality and Catering Committee – Sis. Nora Etta Rattler, Chairperson
The mission of the Hospitality Committee is to provide culinary services for the members and guests during all church related and sponsored events to include: Annual Church Picnic; Easter Service, Wednesday Night Bible Study Dinner Fellowships; Funerals; Youth Movie Night Events; Special Days After Service Repasses; Community Workshops, Meetings and Conferences; and whenever needed by the pastor and ministries of the church
New Member Orientation Committee – Deacon Richard Craven, Chairperson
The mission of the NMOC is to assist or help new members to identify their spiritual gifts and talents and find their place in the vibrant life of the church through its ministries fulfilling the mandate and mission of the church. New members are required to attend four (4) orientation sessions and receive instruction in the areas of Stewardship of Time, Talent and Treasure; and candidates for baptism are instructed in an abbreviated presentation of Christian belief, doctrine and practice before receiving the Right Hand of Fellowship by the Pastor, Officers and members of the congregation giving them all rights and privileges of membership. After completion of the process, a Fellowship Repast is conducted after a Sunday Morning Worship Service and the Deacon Watch Care Ministry and Discipleship Training Director continues to keep in touch with new members.
Funeral Committee – Deacon-Trustee Everett D. Gibson, Chairperson
Funeral Committee’s responsibility is to contact and visit the home of the deceased Active Member to assist the bereaved family with the funeral service program and advise of applicable Church and/or Pastoral services. The goal is to ensure that all steps are taken to facilitate the conducting of funeral services and support services with the proper décor, dignity and etiquette that members of the Body of Christ deserve. All funeral Services, to include: Pastor as Officiate, Meals and Hospitality and Use of Church Facilities, shall not be provided by GFCB if the funeral service program is not approved by the GFCB Funeral Committee and Pastor.
Church Clerk – Sis. Alleen K. Carey
Church Historian – Deaconess Diane Swayzer Smith