By Bishop Talmadge Gardner
I had the honor of serving as the presiding officer for the UPPER SOUTH CAROLINA ANNUAL CONFERENCE SESSION, May 14, 2016.
The conference was hosted in the tabernacle of the Upper South Carolina Conference Campgrounds in Pelzer, South Carolina.
I was privileged to serve as the presiding officer for this annual conference in 2013. The session that day was marked by an unusual sense of God’s presence and anointing. That same presence and power was evident this past Saturday—a humbling experience.
Clergy credentials were issued as follows:
Ordination (5) –
- Jonathan Bryan
- Kendall Gilliam
- Donna Lance (Ms. Lance serves as conference secretary/treasurer and longtime executive assistant to four conference superintendents. She is a very gifted lady.)
- John Smith
- Martin Wiles
License (4) –
- Matthew Brown
- Jimmy Heaton
- Kelly Malloy
- Bridgette Parsons
Local Church Minister’s Certificate (6) –
- Jennifer Branham
- Rusty Carroll
- Suzanne Carroll
- Will Crawford
- Brent McCurry
- Sierra Turner
The conference in session memorialized the following with a poignant Memoirs Report. Mrs. Karen Boggs, the beloved wife of our brother-in-Christ and colleague Bishop Ray Boggs, was among those remembered/honored:
- Thomas E. Mason, Jr.
- Wesley E. Dixon
- J. C. Sorrow
- Jaymon H. Smith
Minister’s Spouses –
- Martha H. Butler
- Mildred D. Fleming
- Kathy W. Romich
- Karen F. Boggs
- Byrdie Lee Boggs
- Trannie W. Sorrow
It was an honor as the presiding officer to recognize the following conference attendees:
- Bishop James D. Leggett, 17th General Superintendent of the IPHC from 1997-2009. Bishop Leggett also served as the executive director of Evangelism USA from 1989-1997 and currently serves as president of Holmes Bible College.
- Nan Carpenter served as the former director of the General Minister’s Wives Fellowship and as a member of the General Ministries Cabinet which was established in 2009.
- Ron Moore, former Conference Superintendent, General Board of Administration member & President of Southwestern Christian University
- Ray & Wanda Buchanan, former Conference Superintendent & General Board of Administration member
- Harrell Queen, Director of Alumni Relations, Emmanuel College
- Willard & Yvonne Wagner, IPHC Career Missionaries and Regional Director to West Africa
- Lawrence Pfaff, retired IPHC Career Missionary to Africa
- Hobert & Marguerite Howard, retired IPHC Career Missionaries to India for sixty-one and a half years
- Phillip Gschwend, IPHC Short-Term Missionary
Bishop Boggs’ State of the Conference Reports are always challenging and visionary. The evolution of this conference under his leadership has been exceptional. The emphasis on prayer, the continued growth and development of their conference School of Ministry, millennials, Hispanic ministry and church planting continue to bring transformation.
Ray and Karen had served as conference superintendent and first lady of the Upper South Carolina Conference since 2010. This was Ray’s first conference session without Karen being seated on the front row, center section – directly in front of him.
Ray spoke with emotion and humility as he expressed his gratitude to the conference for ‘CARRYING’ him and his four children since Karen’s death on July 29, 2015.
Ray’s faith in the God he serves gives him confidence that God, who began a good work in him, will bring it to completion! As he said, “As I look back over the last six years of ministry I have to shout, ‘To God be the Glory, Great things He has done’. It truly has been the Lord who has helped our ministers and churches. He has blessed, supplied, encouraged and strengthened us all. The words of Zechariah of old are ringing in my heart this morning, ‘So he answered and said to me: ‘This is the word of the Lord to Zerubbabel: Not by might nor by power, but by My Spirit,’ Says the Lord of hosts.” (Zech. 4:6 NKJV)
May mercy, peace and love be multiplied to Ray, Brett, Bryson, Braden and Braelyn in the days, months and years to come!