Church of God to host annual conference in Oklahoma City

The Church of God faith movement based in Anderson, Ind., will host its annual conference in Oklahoma City for the first time June 23-26 at Crossings Community Church.
by Carla Hinton Published: June 14, 2014
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For the first time since 1906, the Church of God faith movement with headquarters in Anderson, Ind., will host its annual convention in a location other than the city where it is based.

The historic change will bring the convention to Oklahoma City on June 23-26 at Crossings Community Church, 14600 N Portland.

Jim Lyon, general director for Church of God Ministries, said Crossings will host the event with help from other metro-area partners, including Mid-America Christian University, a Church of God-affiliated school, and about 45 affiliated pastors and their congregations.

The event will feature several notable guest speakers, including evangelist Anne Graham Lotz, daughter of renowned evangelist Billy Graham. Also, musical guests will include gospel recording artist Sandi Patty and contemporary Christian band Sidewalk Prophets.

Patty, an Oklahoma City native who now lives in the northwest Oklahoma City area, is a lifelong member of the Church of God. She attends Crossings.

The Rev. Marty Grubbs, Crossings’ senior pastor, said he was surprised and then excited to learn that Church of God leaders wanted to move this year’s convention to his city and church.

A third-generation Church of God minister, Grubbs, 55, senior pastor of Crossings for 33 years, said he considers the historic opportunity to host the annual gathering “an honor.”

Over the years, the Oklahoma City church has offered its assistance to other congregations affiliated with the movement, but “I never dreamed it would result in them deciding to have the national convention at Crossings,” he said.

“That just blew me away.”

A ‘bold’ move

Lyon, 61, said the decision to move the national convention gathering somewhere other than Anderson was made for several “practical, nuts and bolts” reasons. Bucking tradition is bold but exciting, he said.

In that way, the convention’s theme, “Be Bold,” is fitting.

Lyon said the Church of God movement was born in Indiana, and for many years, most of the movement’s members lived in Indiana and nearby states. That has changed over the years, and now the Indiana-based movement’s population has dispersed to many parts of the country.

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by Carla Hinton
Religion Editor
Carla Hinton, an Oklahoma City native, joined The Oklahoman in 1986 as a National Society of Newspaper Editors minority intern. She began reporting full-time for The Oklahoman two years later and has served as a beat writer covering a wide...
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If you go

2014 Church of God Convention

When: June 23-26.

Where: Crossings Community Church, 14600 N Portland.

Information: Registration details, a schedule of convention activities and tickets for individual events, concerts and sessions can be found at www.chogconvention.org.

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