June 7, 2016

Greater First COGIC Knoxville, Tenn- The Judiciary Board Stand For Justice

Greater First Church of God in Christ, Knoxville, Tennessee is a church at the center of a firestorm.  Bishop Thomas Holsey requested an interpretation of the Article III, Section D of the COGIC Constitution which controls the transfer of churches from one jurisdiction to another.  Now the Judiciary Board has ruled and the Church leadership is not pleased.  Here is an excerpt from his request;

“It is requested the Judiciary Branch of the Church of God in Christ, render an interpretation of the constitution:
Part II

Does Article state  geographical guidelines?

Click here to read Bishop Holsey’s request

The Judiciary Board’s interpretation;

Article III, Part 2, Section D, ¶ 17, 18, 19, of the Constitution of the Church of God in Christ, Inc. governs the transfer of churches between jurisdictions.  A  careful review of said provision reveals that the Constitution is silent on the issue of geographic location as it relates to  transfers.

Therefore, it is the finding of this Court that the Constitution does not prohibit nor restrict local churches from transferring their jurisdictional affiliation regardless of geographical  location(s).

Complete Order

Article III, Part 2, Section D, paragraph 17,18, 19

Just this past November in the General Assembly, Bishop Blake spoke of a meeting between the three branches of Church government, (excerpt from page 2 of the November 2015 General Assembly minutes);

“Bishop Blake continued informing the delegates of a meeting he convened between the leaders of the three branches of the church’s government. The goal of the meeting was to work out any division or differences among these bodies for the unity and future of the Church. A special resolution (see Attachment C) was prepared as a result of their collaboration and read to the Assembly for acceptance. A motion was made to adopt the resolution. After a proper second, the MOTION  CARRIED  and  Joint Resolution  #112015 was ADOPTED.”

Paragraph 5 of the Joint resolution stated;

“BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that the rulings of the Judiciary Board are final and not subject to scrutiny or review; and”

Complete Joint Resolution

As I stated before there is now a huge uproar over this ruling.

More on this subject at a later date.



  1. Correction: the “General Assembly met on November the 14th. 2016, not 2014. and passed this Resolution regarding Church transfers. As of January 2017, the attorneys in Knoxville Tn representing the Cogic in civil court sent a letter to the court yet denying that Greater 1st Cogic is in the Delaware Jurisdiction under Bishop Holsey. The Judciary Board of the Cogic has affirmed twice that Greater 1st Cogic in Knoxville Tn has transferred to Delaware Jurisdiction correctly. . Why is our General Board of the Cogic not withdrawing their objections and complaint and allowing this church to move forward.? The Highest court in the church of Cogic and the General Assembly has spoken. Why do they continue to go against the ruling of the Supreme Court of the Church?

    Comment by Pastor Harold T Davis Jr. — January 10, 2017 @ 8:40 AM | Reply

    • Because of pride and the love of money.
      And because lawlessness will abound, the love of many will grow cold. (Matthew 24:12, NKJV)

      Comment by R.E. Stidham — January 10, 2017 @ 9:25 AM | Reply

  2. Well I guess Romans 12:17, “Provide things honest in the sight of all men”, just went out the window again for Cogic’s leadership. So everybody can read about Blake raping or not raping Sidney Lassiter but not Blake’s Executive Order. He should put that executive order with where ever he has put that Men of Valor Training Manual LOL

    Comment by Rex — June 15, 2016 @ 3:35 AM | Reply

  3. It seems as if this Executive order was meant just for Greater First Cogic in Tn . Not all the churches, otherwise why has not this executive order put on the national Cogic website for all to see. And why did not Bishop Blake mention it at the womens convention when he spoke that night? The soul of the Cogic is in a battle between right and wrong. Seems as if this church in Tn has gone by church law and the constitution has backed them up and from what I hear its all about money. This pastor in Knoxville was offered a lot a money to sell his church property. This pastor is at retirement age and because he has a church that holds 700 people and the membership had dwindled down to about 12 faithful, he wanted to leave the church in good financial standing. From what I heard there was gross mismanagement in the church finance office and the church had defaulted on a church loan twice in 1 year and the fiancé team never said a word about it to the membership. Once the pastor found out the dept of what was going on, in his position as pastor and Ceo of the church, he fired the trustees in the office and terminated their membership from the church. Most pastor’s would have filed criminal charges against them, The pastor then had an audit done in the church office from what I was told and found out that enough money was coming in, but the bills was not being paid. Just enough to keep the lights on. The pastor then from what I heard sent out letters to all members who was not in good standing to tell them and to encourage them to get back in good standing with the church in attendance and paying their tithes and offerings. These members decided to leave the church and go with the trustees whom the pastor terminated. At this time from my understanding Greater First Cogic is in Delaware Juridication, but Tn 2nd Jurisdiction decided to put Pastor of Greater First Cogic on trial. How can you put a pastor from another Jurisdiction on trial? From my understanding a letter was sent to the Judicary board with 50 names on it saying they was the majority membership from Greater First Cogic. But the letter was fraudulent. It had newborn babies names on it and even a man who was in prison. It had names of people who grew up at the church but had moved away years ago. And how can you be a member if you have not been at the church with your physical presence and have not paid tithes and offerings to that church in over a year? The last I heard is they found this pastor guilty on all the charges they charged him with. But I am sure this will end up with the judiciary board also because its unconstitutional to try a pastor who has transferred his church to another jurisdiction lawfully according to the judiciary board order.

    Comment by anonymous — June 14, 2016 @ 6:15 AM | Reply

    • The Executive Order is on the Churches web site. However, only Pastors who have register with the new program they have can read it. As to why Bishop Blake did not mention it, I have no clue. You are correct on your other points.

      Comment by R.E. Stidham — June 14, 2016 @ 7:37 AM | Reply

  4. The judiciary board is the supreme court of the cogic and the constitution says its rulings are binding and cannot be up for review or appealed by any individual or body. And for the Presiding Bishop of the Cogic who swore a oath to obey and defend this constitution to issue a executive order calling the order put out by the judiciary board invalid and trying to put a hold on the ruling until November of this year 2016 is wrong. He is in direct violation of the constitution he is charged to obey and defend. Just because he don’t agree with a ruling, the constitution says it plain. the only ones who can change the ruling is the General Assembly. But the General Assembly has already said that a ruling by the judiciary board is final and not up for review. Bishop Blake needs to read his own testimony when he went down to Florida and testified in court under oath against the late Presiding bishop David Owens. He is trying to do the same thing Bishop Owens was trying to do.( have absolute power) What Bishop Blake is doing is like if the supreme court of the United States made a ruling and the President of the United States decided he did not like it, he would put out an executive order to stop it. It can’t be done and neither should it be done in our Grand ole Church of God In Christ. You have to lead by example Bishop Blake. You also put in your Executive order that all jurisdictional local church transfers are on hold until further notice. That is also unconstitutional. I don’t know who is advising our presiding Bishop, but they are wrong if they think the majority of the members of the church of God in Christ is going to allow any presiding Bishop have absolute power. We only have one King and that is Jesus Christ. Just last Year in November of 2015 General Assembly, the Cogic had a resolution Committee do a joint resolution #112015-1 that says be it further resolved that the rulings of the Judiciary Board are final and not subject to scrutiny or review. Its pretty plain that our presiding bishop don’t want to follow the rules that he signed and agreed too.

    Comment by Anonymous — June 8, 2016 @ 10:36 AM | Reply

    • The General Assembly transferred its Judicial Powers to the Judiciary Board, they can change the law by amending it, but the cannot change an order. Again, they have the power to change the law (which in effect changes the order) but they cannot change the order directly. You are correct otherwise, I applaud your insight.

      Comment by R.E. Stidham — June 8, 2016 @ 10:56 AM | Reply

  5. Can you provide some insight on why this question was posed to the Judiciary Board by Bishop Holsey?

    Comment by Warren Manigault — June 8, 2016 @ 10:16 AM | Reply

    • This pastor chose to transfer jurisdictions and went through the process to do so. This transfer was opposed by the Jurisdictional Bishop and Bishop Blake who actively seeks to stop it. Thus Bishop Holsey asked his question. I realize there are still in this narrative and they will be filled in with future post.

      Comment by R.E. Stidham — June 8, 2016 @ 11:02 AM | Reply

      • The General Assembly of the Cogic met on November the 14,2014 and passed a Resolution regarding Church Transfers: To wit, this Resolution controls future Church transfers and as such mandates that Churches can only transfer to Jurisdictions which are in States that are physically contiguous to the state the moving Church resides in. Please note the Resolution will not be applied retroactively, therefore Greater First Cogic in Knoxville Tn transfer from Tennessee Jurisdiction to the Delaware Jurisdiction is unaffected by this legislation. The Church of God In Christ Inc. Judicary Board ruling in this case prevails.

        Comment by Pastor Harold T. Davis Jr — November 28, 2016 @ 1:31 PM

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