Founder: Bishop & Mrs. C. C. Owens
Emanuel Church of God in Christ was founded in 1956 under the leadership of the late Bishop C.C. Owens. Our motto during his leadership was “The church with a heart, the minister with a message.” During Bishop Owens’ 48 year tenure as the leader of our flock he made many strides in the kingdom of God and for 37 of those years Bishop Owens was a tremendous leader and an integral asset to Southern Illinois Jurisdiction’s Lakeshore District accomplishing most of his great feats during this time. It was here that he and our current Pastor found many things for their hands to do to build God’s kingdom. Bishop Owens founded and organized the Religious Worker’s Guild, Inc. in 1957 and was the creator of the Bishop Charles Harrison Mason Award which during his lifetime was the Church of God In Christ’s highest award. He was appointed National President of the Guild on December 11, 1959, by the late Bishop C.H. Mason, during the General Assembly of the Church of God in Christ, in Memphis, Tennessee.
Bishop Owens received an honorary Doctor of Divinity degree from Trinity Bible College and in 1998 he was elevated to Auxiliary Bishop by Presiding Bishop Chandler David Owens. Bishop C.H. Mason, the father of the Church of God in Christ prophesied such an accomplishment on the life of Bishop Owens. Bishop Owens was noted for his dedication and contributions to the church locally and internationally. In the months preceding his death the Lord led Bishop Owens to begin the Greater Illinois Fellowship and gave him the vision to build a new edifice. Pastor Richardson as the Assistant Pastor then was by Bishop Owens’ side faithfully. Bishop Owens was our Moses; he paved the way for our journey to the Promised Land.
We are currently operating from the second location that witnessed the beginning of Emanuel Church of God in Christ’s ministry, all praises be to God. Therein, Bishop Owens never got the opportunity to witness the furtherance of his vision and the mission he so fervently set to accomplish. As Bishop Owens was our Moses, the mantle has landed on Joshua to “Build(ing) upon the Solid Foundation” Bishop Owens left behind. The Pastoral responsibility fell on our current Sheppard suddenly and without warning, yet he was ready. Be ye also ready, come what may! Since 2003 Pastor Michael Richardson has accomplished great things with the help of the Lord, by fasting and praying and constant supplication and consecration of the church as well. He has admonished us as God’s children to heighten our hunger and thirst for God and to go after His spirit and anointing tirelessly. He has taken us to a higher plane.
Pastor Michael Richardson has led us in the paths of righteousness in every way possible. Our church is now a member of the First Jurisdiction Illinois which operates under the leadership of Bishop Ocie Booker. It is here that the Lord has elevated both our Pastor to Auxiliaries In Ministry (AIM) Chairman and our First Lady as Second Assistant District Missionary of the David A. Reed Senior District. The Lord’s will shall be accomplished herein. There are great things in store for this flock and this ministry. It is our prayer that your soul is blessed through the ministry and growth of our church.