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Articles:

Church Government and Leadership Roles


Monthly Message---Poetry---Events Calendar---Need a Laugh


September 10, 1996
Reference: Church Government and Leadership
Prepared by: Pastor John Doonan

As I write this paper I find that it is not so much my intention to build a church government for you as to define terms. In order to lead we must receive instruction. Once we have received instruction then we can charge others with the duties at hand. This then will promote confidence in ministry and aid in our efforts to grow. A safe church is much sought after. Though this may seem but a self-deception to some we must never-the-less strive for this high calling in that truly exist in Christ Jesus. Let us leave the complainers and hopelessly cynic perspectives and with hope, and faith, and love search for real answers.
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Leadership’s Role

In the establishment of the Church and it’s primary operations to fulfill it’s purpose before God, we have to first recognize leadership’s fundamental responsibilities biblically:

1. The Call of God Hebrews 5:1-5
1 For every high priest taken from among men is ordained for men in things pertaining to God, that he may offer both gifts and sacrifices for sins:
2 Who can have compassion on the ignorant, and on them that are out of the way; for that he himself also is compassed with infirmity.
3 And by reason hereof he ought, as for the people, so also for himself, to offer for sins.
4 And no man taketh this honour unto himself, but he that is called of God, as was Aaron.
5 So also Christ glorified not himself to be made an high priest; but he that said unto him, Thou art my Son, to day have I begotten thee. (AV)

2. The Great Commission
Acts 1:8 But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth. (AV)

3. The Need of a Lost World
Romans 5:12 Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned: (AV)

4. Need for the Upholding and Instruction of the Body of Christ (the Church)
Ephesians 4:10 He that descended is the same also that ascended up far above all heavens, that he might fill all things.) (AV)

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Faith and Church Government

In the administration of these great truths we understand and are cautioned here by the author that any failure of God’s word is first and foremost a problem with faith. Even bad government can work where there is faith. We by the word of God understand that when our faith fails, and religion fails, we by instinct turn to government. Good government can not and should never replace this faith. The cost is far too high. In grieving the Holy Spirit and rejecting His leadership we forfeit His miracle working power. This then limits our fellowship to human exchange, which cannot save, provide, or heal. In the case of failed faith, it is important to allow time for growth and renewal of vision before even beginning to consider governmental changes.

We must begin every labor with faith. Faith believes and is excited (even if cautious) it will work and has the power to endure through hardship and possible hard feelings. Even as I write this I know that as this becomes available there will be those who will use this instruction in government for self promotion and to take a lead position for prides sake. Wherever there is a problem, the temptation to enforce with strong governmental reform becomes an easy alternative to faith. Faith believes in what may not be present to sight. Abuses, however, cannot take away the importance of Church Government.

Good government always follows faith. Where there is to be growth we must be organized. Conscientious leadership must not be exclusively reactive in it’s rule. To have a pre-prepared guide to answer problems as they arise is far better and instills better confidence in the family than trying to write the book of rules as you go. Following the wheel that squeaks loudest can become endless and frustrating not to mention a wholly unspiritual experience. Virtuous and sound government promotes growth from within and gains respect from without. To have confidence in your daily operations can actually build and enhance faith.
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Leaderships Qualifications

Government is a service not primarily a ruling body. It should evolve to fulfill the need of the entire body. Government should also take into account the reality of performance. It’s easy to create lofty ideals, but lofty ideals alone without the works of faith cannot get the job done. Getting the job done is the reason for government.

Legislature is not for our status or our assertion of popularity. There are primary evils present that can inflict even the most humble individuals. I was once told by a great man, the sins of leadership are

Shine, Whine, and Recline

1. Pride - of being successful or wanting bigger and better.
2. Envy - of other leaders.
3. Covetousness - Wanting something for yourself.
4. Anger - Hebrews 12:14 Follow peace with all men, and holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord:
15 Looking diligently lest any man fail of the grace of God; lest any root of bitterness springing up trouble you, and thereby many be defiled;
5. Sloth- Procrastination.
6. Gluttony
7. Lust

Many pitfalls try to snare the immature minister:
1. Unduly exalted position of self
2. A disparaging attitude toward other ministers. A disparaging attitude toward ministers of other faiths.
3. Impulsive desire to fix people or "get them told".
4. A desire to clean out the church.
5. Becoming copycats of famous preachers.

Virtues Of Ministers / A Servant And A Shepherd

1. We should always be available. � "Better to say he is busy than lazy" w Start List Element Block � "Better to wear out than rust out" � calling on homes � telephone � keep a record of things needed � you may do these things in between other duties
2. Watch for souls (especially children) � saved � unsaved
3. Watch for Shy People
4. Disciple readily all you see (for God has brought them before you)
5. Watch out for youth as they begin to get involved with the service of our Lord.

Amazing Grace Ministries Qualifications and Requirements for Service

This listing of requirements and qualifications is written in accordance with the scriptures for the express purpose of promoting unity, and conformity in the local body of Christ. It’s purpose is not to create a set of rules and regulations, to be used over another, but to offer a form of guidance to the individual for personal evaluation, and understanding of the need of the whole body.

It is far better and more edifying for all to observe and practice personal evaluation then for another to dictate behavior and conscience. This article is not designed to be used by some to judge or critically put down another member of the body of Christ. The basic premise of our faith states, we are a new creation in Christ, therefore if we are new in ourselves, so then is every member of the body, and capable of wise and discerning choice as directed by the word of God. The Word of God is not given for private interpretation, but it is given by the revelation of the love of God in every line and syllable.

The word of God can be used for instruction, correction, and reproof. It is to be noticed that first comes instruction and allowance for personal growth, correction as guidance to behavior, and only as reproof when attitudes are contrary to the inherent purpose of promoting the love of God.

It is clear within the scriptures that mature leaders are given to the body for this purpose of instruction, correction and, if needed, reproof. It is not within the authority of all members to reprove his brother in Christ, but rather to love and build up in the faith. Not to publicly humiliate or tear down one’s faith, but to hold up until they can stand on their own.

BASIC REQUIREMENTS

1. BORN AGAIN Confessing Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord, and making a personal decision not related to baptism or any other doctrine, but a true experience with meeting Jesus Christ. Receiving and applying His redemptory blood to your life, and realizing you are imputed with his righteousness and not of your own. Forgiven of all sin, past, present, and future. Eternally secure in this promise of salvation by faith. (Eph 2:8-9)

2. BAPTIZED IN WATER BY IMMERSION An act of obedience to the scriptures. In that as Christ died and raised again unto life, forgiving us of our sin, and placing us in fellowship with the father. So, we in the likeness through baptism symbolize this truth in our lives. We reckon ourselves dead unto self, raised again in eternal life. A life dedicated to the full service of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, and the administration of his Gospel (good news) to others.

3. BAPTIZED IN THE HOLY SPIRIT According to Acts 2:4, we are to seek the filling of God’s spirit, for the express purpose of being empowered by the Holy Spirit with gifts to share his gospel with demonstration of his spirit. Thereby, the Holy Spirit as our teacher, reveals to us the truth of God’s word by his gifts, confirming his word with signs and wonders. (1Corin. 12)

PERSONAL QUALIFICATIONS

1 Timothy chapter 3

1. TEMPERATE... One is not easily distracted from purpose, but vigilant, holding to the prescribed course, not given to excess, but holding to Biblical balance, and diligent and careful to find that balance.

2. SOBER-MINDED... Not double-minded, careful not to be distracted by strange doctrines, but purposed and disciplined in mind to seek after truth.

3. GOOD BEHAVIOR... Not excessively carnal in nature (word or deed), not obscene, but orderly and disciplined in conduct to others.

4. GIVEN TO HOSPITALITY... Friendly and ready to unashamedly proclaim your faith in Jesus Christ to others with gentleness and politeness, an act of love, not striving for personal recognition or to prove yourself. Let the Spirit of love and gentleness show himself in demonstration of God’s spirit.

5. APT TO TEACH... Meekness is to have a teachable spirit. One cannot teach until taught. One cannot expect others to submit to your teaching until you have submitted to another leader anointed and promoted by God. Not disputing over doctrine, but acting in gentleness and meekness and patience...not striving.

6. NOT GIVEN TO WINE... In reference to altering alcohol or drugs (prescription or non-prescription) that would influence your behavior or judgment.

7. NOT GREEDY OR COVETOUS... The word declares God prospers his children. It is God’s will that we have whatever we desire or need. by faith we know these possessions are real. Our purpose is not to gain possessions, but to give. We will have more than enough through our giving, not our getting. We will also be able to meet the needs of others with the abundance we receive. The fault is not in the possession, but in the desire of lust for things.

8. NOT A BRAWLER... One who is not argumentative or threatening in word or deed. Not ready to fight, but ready to make peace. Not divisive or causing discord, but promoting unity and harmony.

9. GRAVITY... To be a good listener, taking and giving the advice and counseling of others seriously and thoughtfully. To be patient and not necessarily quick in response, but careful and thoughtful in consideration, with a meek and quiet spirit.

10. NOT A NOVICE... A beginner is not going to receive a great deal of authority lest he be taken in pride, and puffed up in position. It is better to learn and develop, and be accepted in position through the recognition of others than to promote self. The body will notice who has been given position and authority by God. To be well-founded in the word and ready to answer any question biblically by word and example.

11. A GOOD REPORT FROM THOSE OUTSIDE... Even those outside the church will recognize your love and anointing by God, and your faith in Christ, by your word and manner of life. Your appearance and life style should not be such that would draw attention to your individuality but rather following prescribed dress codes you should be submitted to all who would come to receive from you without having to exclude yourself because of your appearance

12. NOT DOUBLE TONGUED... Let all your words be yea or nay... It is impossible for vinegar and honey to come from the same source. Not a gossip or one who speaks evil of others. Let all your words be edifying to the hearer, building up and giving grace.

13. HOLDING TO THE FAITH IN PURE CONSCIENCE... Holding onto sound teaching and doctrine with great faith. Promoting the unity and growth of the body in purity of thought, and faith in the power of prayer. Teaching by example of good conscience, not causing another to stumble or enter into strife. In agreement with the purpose and call of the ministry, and in agreement with it’s teachings, and not ill at ease but understanding the word in all diligence of personal study. Being taught and hearing the anointing of the leaders God has promoted over you in authority. Sharing over the local body as God is teaching and directing through the gifts of his Spirit; not opposing or causing dissension. Pure in heart toward all, promoting the corporate anointing of God to fill all our meetings and outreaches.

14. NOT SLANDEROUS... Speaking well of all especially those of the Body of Christ.

15. FAITHFUL IN ALL THINGS...
To be faithful to the ministry God has called you to. The local body is the outlet for you to work together to evangelize and teach the gospel to the area God has placed you in. No one has a ministry separate to that of your local body, for within this body are the gifts and support we each need to fulfill our personal call to serve.
To be faithful and punctual in attendance, to teach and be taught by His Spirit, and equipped by the method God has chosen to prepare His body to do the work of the ministry in the world.
To be a part of this body and it’s work; to join in unity of spirit and purpose.
To make yourself available to do whatever is required to help this body grow and reach out to its field of evangelism. Not seeking for personal recognition or control but concerned with the working of, in an orderly and efficient manner, this ministry God has called us each to.
To show the world that we have a Good and Gracious Lord able to do and fulfill in love His purpose in this earth. It should be a priority in your life style to be present in all scheduled weekly services (as possible) and important meetings of the church.

CONCLUSION

Again I would like to emphasize the need for personal evaluation. If in considering yourself you find there are area in these requirements you have trouble with, you should seek counsel from the leadership before you.

After becoming a leader this paper does not mean evaluation should stop, but we should continually examine our private motives and actions. Personal guidance can always be sought and found, in Christ’s provision for His body to grow and learn of Him. Through prayer, teaching from the pulpit, study of the word, counseling with the leadership and body of Christ, all can effectively create the understanding, to help promote the unity and harmony of the body as a whole. Let the Love of God rule in your heart and let his love flow towards those around you always. For love never fails.

It’s not your job to fix but rather to flow in the love of God by direction of the Holy Spirit.
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Gentle Rule

1. As good leaders we must rule gently, respectfully, and with meekness:

2. We must also be ready to uncompromisingly be defenders of the faith through truth.
3. Ordination / The purpose of ordination.

Responsibilities And Duties Of The General Leadership

I. General Responsibilities to the Total Church Program:

II. Specific Responsibilities to an Activity:

Possible Officers To Be Appointed Or Elected
(some could be filled by full time ministers)

Suggestions For Personal Spiritual Life Of All Who Serve

1. When God Taught Me To Give It Became My Source Of Power And Victory
2. Personal Discipline In Private
3. Guard Against Ministerial Laziness
4. Have Bible Study For Personal And Private Profit / Not Just Sermonizing
5. Daily Personal Devotions Are A Must
6. Read Your Bible With A Notebook And Pen At Hand
7. Read And Study To Learn About God
8. Read And Study To Improve Your Own Life
9. Develop A Well Ordered Prayer Life - Pray Systematically - Use A Prayer List
10. Pray For All Members Of Church / Individually
11. Pray For New Prospects
12. Pray For Missionaries
13. Read Other Devotional Materials
14. Continue In A Scriptural Memorization Program
15. Learn To Control Thoughts And Emotions
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Church Boards and Officers

1. Boards should only be brought into existence to serve a need.
2. Develop a simple list of qualifications for each member of a board.
3. Officers should be rotated.
4. Pastors sit in on every board meeting without exception.

The Elders Board --Comprised of ordained and licensed ministers for the regulation of Spiritual teachings within the body. To organize ministry and represent every department concerned with teaching and evangelization with in the church. The Pastor to appoint and distribute authority as required to fulfill the churches spiritual need. In the advent of no Pastor individuals may fill a temporary appointment by the pulpit committee until a new Pastor reorganizes the staff. One member appointed to sit on the deacons board

Advisory Board ---Chairmans of other boards. They operate as a budget committee They can also as the need arises operate as a pulpit committee Concur with the deacons board

The Deacon Board ---Comprised of lay members (an elder, or non-active ordained and licensed minister may also be operative in a lay position.) Appointed to office by the Pastor or in the advent of no Pastor they may fill a temporary appointment by the pulpit committee.
The most important church board for daily operations of the Church.
They are the spiritual leaders of the assembly but are servants to the congregation.
This board should have it’s own officers selected each year.
The Chairman and Pastor should have a weekly meeting for his input into the deacons board and prayer.
Deacon Board Minutes should be kept and distributed to the Pastor for each meeting whether formal or informal
Avoid Turning Deacon Meetings Into Business Meetings.

� Order Of Meeting

Work Out Administration For Ushers And Serving Of Communion
� Trained In Evangelism, Visitation, w Start List Element Block
� Develop Orientation Programs For New Members

� Develop a program for novice deacons

All decisions require majority vote of all deacons/ not just present with the option of giving a proxy if unable to attend. Any vote without full participation will be continued until which time this requirement may be fulfilled. All decisions must be affirmed by elders board before enforced.

Christian Education

The coupled purpose of the local church assembly with its counterpart of community evangelism

Missionary Committee

Purpose to recommend and follow up on care and communication with all missionaries. Should work closely with Pastor on details

Constitution Committee

Elected Elders and Elected Deacons to convene to establish a working constitution and at least once every 5 years appoint members and convene to make sure the constitution addresses the needs of the church as faced with generational changes.

Business Meeting

� Plan, Pray, and Promote � Promote quarterly business meetings well in advance � The Pastor may appoint someone to moderate the meeting or take that position himself. � Include pastors report in annual report
Include in annual report a revised members list

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Church Administration

Check List of questions
1. Are board meetings held regularly and in accordance with constitution
2. Are minutes taken and are these minutes kept in the office of all boards and committee meetings
3. Are the church files kept active. Are they adequate and effective
4. Are the files easily understood.
5. Is the membership list revised and kept active. Active and Inactive members
6. Are accurate financial books audited regularly
7. Are the financial reports made to the church periodically
8. Is a budget drawn up and stayed with as best as possible
9. Are emergency money problems presented to the church
10. Keep a central calendar, so as to avoid scheduling two things at once
11. Are groups and committees keeping all informed as to what is happening in church
12. Are all correspondence answered promptly
13. Are business matters handled promptly and efficiently
14. Are discipline problems handled promptly and biblically
15. Are people informed of office hours
16. Is office arranged efficiently and is it orderly
17. Does the church have a reputation for paying it’s bills on time
18. Are Christian Education materials stored in as orderly and efficient place
19. Does the church have proper office facilities for the Staff and Pastor / adequate shelves, lighting
20. Is someone responsible for janitorial supplies and duties
21. Who shuts off lights appliances, shuts doors and windows
22. Who does the bulletin
23. Can anyone write local publicity
24. Do the trustees check the premises and fix up the grounds
25. Is there anticipation of annual and quarterly payments and are funds set aside for these
26. Are incorporation papers and tax papers adequate and available
27. Is there an adequate stewardship program
28. Is the treasurer a dependable person
29. Have all of your special days planned in advance including business meetings
30. Are all important papers kept in a safe place
31. Are incorporation papers kept up to date
32. Is there an active church public relations committee
33. Is an update property inventory on file
34. Is there a clear budget amount set for supplies each week.

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Possible Church Officers

Pastor
(See "Decently and in Order" by Rev Bob Yandian)

Elder / Elderess
(See "Decently and in Order" by Rev Bob Yandian)

Deacon / Deaconess
(See "Decently and in Order" by Rev Bob Yandian)

Secretary / Clerk

Treasurer

Financial Secretary

Head Usher Music

Director Children’s Ministry

Director Training Union Director

Women’s And Men’s Fellowship Director

Trustees

Sanitary Engineer

Minister of Education

Chairman of a Board of Directors
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SUGGESTIONS FOR A TEACHER’S / LEADER’S COVENANT

Recognizing the essential need of Christian education and my privilege and duty to render personal service to my Lord through the organized efforts of the Bible school; and in viewof my appointment as a teacher, trusting in the help and guidance of the Holy Spirit I promise my Lord and Saviour that I will be faithful in the discharge of my duties and responsibilities and agree to the following covenant:

1. I have received Jesus Christ as my Lord and Saviour, and am now living in daily communion with Him. That God may show me how I may be of the greatest help to my class shall be my constant prayer. James 1:5
2. I have recieved the Baptism of the Holy Spirit with evidence of Speaking in Tongues
3. I subscribe to the Articles of Faith contained in the constitution of The Church and agree to teach nothing that shall conflict with this doctrinal standard. II Timothy 3:16
4. I will make it a practice to teach my class regularly every Sunday morning, and if for a valid reason I am prevented from coming I will notify the superintendent or department superintendent, and if desired, will help to provide a substitute who is mutually acceptable. Col. 2:5
5. I will make it a practice to come on time to my class sessions, and interpret this to mean that I am to be present at least 30 minutes before the opening of the school each Sunday( for intercessory prayer), unless hindered by some reason I can conscientiously give to God. (Teachers absent two Sundays in succession, except for regular vacation or illness, this includes those who are consistently irregular in attendance, will be asked to give up their class to others who are waiting to teach.) Phil. 4:13
6. I will take time to prepare thoroughly for the teaching of each lesson; maintain discipline, help by personal example to create an attitude of reverence and good behavior in the school. II Timothy 2:15
7. I will be watchful over my own Christian life. I will abstain from any indulgence or sinful pleasure which in any wise would compromise my Christian testimony. I Corinthians 8:9
8. I will regularly attend the meetings appointed for teachers and officers and I agree to be responsible to the superintendent for any absence from these meetings, submitting the reason for such absence. Ephesians 6:7
9. I will attend classes in Teachers’ Training, when the opportunity is offered, or study at least two approved books on Sunday School work, in order to become more effective and to learn higher standards and better methods.
10. I will cooperate with the officers of the school and my fellow teachers. I will welcome constructive criticism and helpful suggestions and will at all times abide by such rulings as may be made for the best interest of the whole school.
11. As a teacher I shall feel my responsibility toward The Church and agree to attend its services regularly and give account for absence if otherwise hindered. I will do my best to get the members of my class to attend also.
12. I will earnestly strive and pray for the conversion of those members of my class who are not Christians and will seek to lead them to accept Jesus Christ as their personal Saviour. Also I will make the work of our school, its officers and teachers, and our missionary work of the foreign field subjects of earnest prayer. James 5:20
13. If one of my class is absent, either I or the secretary of my class will contact that absentee before the following Sunday.
14. I will visit the homes of my pupils as often as possible (at least twice a year).
15. I will watch carefully to see that the names and addresses on my class roll are correct
16. I will neither add to nor erase names from my class role book. However I will assist the secretary, in every possible way, to secure the correct information. I Corinthians 14:40
17. I will be willing to be transferred to any class of any department, when in the judgment of the Pastor and the executive board such a change will serve the larger and better interests of our Sunday School program.
18. Should I find it impossible to continue my services for any reason, I will notify the superintendent, in writing, at least two weeks in advance. I make this covenant with the full knowledge that it will require my time, talents, and energy to carry it out. This to be accomplished through the strength of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, Whose I am and Whom I serve

Name_____________________________________________

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The Leadership And Membership

1. Teach and preach membership from a scriptural view.
2. On visitation to new Christian families, give a sales talk on what your church has to offer.
3. Teach all new converts the importance of membership. Baptize.
4. Give importance to the services of public Baptism and the acceptance of New members.
5. Use an orientation class for new members.

6. Coordinate with your church clerk on an up to date list of members; names, addresses and telephone numbers.
7. Periodically revise your membership list for the people.
8. Try to have some practice of regular visitation in your church homes.

9. Don’t overlook hospital and sick calls.
10. Record name, date and time of your visit.
11. Use a talent survey for your use as to what you can do with people.
12. Try to plan your ministry to reach all ages and classes.
13. Teach your members to be friendly to visitors and invite them into your home.
14. Do your best to involve your members in some type of activities.
15. Always express gratitude to your members.
16. Always be seeking to challenge individuals into His service.
17. Have your deacons divide the congregation into watchcare sections.
18. Don’t neglect delinquent and needy members. Widows, shut ins, sick people.
19. If people are absent, leave a note or calling to let them know you were around, members and non members alike

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VISITATION

THREE GREAT LEADERSHIP PROBLEMS

I. MAINTAINING YOUR OWN SPIRITUAL LIFE AT THE PROPER LEVEL

II. KEEPING YOUR INTEREST IN THE MAIN BUSINESS OF THE CHRISTIAN

III. STIRRING OTHERS TO ACTION

Many fail at this point. Many have good talents, good devotional life, good education, but fail to arouse the interest of others in the work of the Lord.

SEVEN ESSENTIALS FOR A SUCCESSFUL
VISITATION PROGRAM

I. A BURDEN FOR SOULS

II. A THOROUGH CENSUS

III. A PLANNED PROGRAM OF VISITATION

IV. A WEEKLY SYSTEM OF ENLISTING WORKERS

V. A VISITATION SECRETARY

VI. INSTRUCTION IN VISITATION

VII. PERSISTENCE

Without this, all visitation fails. Visitation programs are usually easy to start, but difficult to continue. Many people launch a program, but fail to keep it going
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Published by Amazing Grace Ministries Publishing, Westchester. Illinois Distributed by Amazing Grace Ministries Publishing, Westchester. Illinois Unless otherwise indicated all Scripture quotations are from the Authorized / King James Version (KJV)  No part of these articles or  books  may be reproduced without written permission except for brief quotation in books and critical reviews.
For information write 

Amazing Grace Ministries Evangelistic Association Inc.
4051 Valley Dr
Pueblo, CO 81008
Phone 719-569-7398
Fax  708-234-7099

 

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