First Recipients of Church Planting Bank Grants Approved

Cleveland, TN–On Tuesday night, April 25, the first recipients to be approved for grants from the recently established Church Planting Bank were introduced during the Tuesday evening session of the International Executive Council of the Church of God.

Last week, the Church Planting Bank Loan Committee met for the first time – and in a historic move for the Church of God – approved the seven church planters to receive funding from the CHURCH PLANTING DESIGNATED FUND, or what is being referred to as the “Church Planting Bank.” While being approved for the funds, each team will continue in the process, which includes seeking matching grant opportunities, prior to being awarded the funds.

Six of the church planting teams were represented on Tuesday night and were introduced to the Executive Council by General Overseer Tim Hill. In addition, Hill introduced Director of USA Missions Mitch Maloney, who also serves as Director of the Office of Church Planting and has been involved in working with the church planters. Maloney confirmed that over 40 candidates are in the process of applying to be church planters, and that almost 100 church planters have signed up to attend a conference next month.

“From what I have seen and heard about the church planters contacting headquarters, we have some quality candidates that are ready, willing, and able to help in our FINISH Commitment to fulfilling the Great Commission,” Hill stated.

Hill reminded the Council of the relationship with ARC (Association of Related Churches), Multiplication Network and other groups that are helping the Church of God in efforts to be successful at church planting. He also thanked Maloney for his commitment to church planting and to the Church of God. “Your service as a pastor and a mentor over the years to so many is serving you well in your new responsibilities. Let’s keep up the incredible work that has been started,” Hill said.

Hill then introduced the church planters in attendance who all gave brief testimonies of their journeys. The honorees introduced were as follows:

Chris and Tracy Binion: Chris is an ordained bishop in the Church of God, and a Christian comedian. Chris has served as a youth pastor and as a worship pastor, serving for 6 ½ years at Newport News, Va., building a youth group there of over 400 teenagers. He also worked for one year at The Crossing in Chattanooga. For the past 12 years, Chris has worked for Wells Fargo Bank in marketing. Chris and Tracy are planning to launch Encounter Church in Rockwell, Texas in September.

Kevin and Hope Burroughs: Kevin is an ordained bishop and Hope is an ordained minister in the Church of God. Kevin has served full-time on the staff at the Stockbridge Community Church of God in Georgia for the last ten years. The Burroughs have a burden for Murfreesboro, Tennessee, a city of almost 150,000 that literally has doubled in the last 10 years. The Burroughs plan to launch Transformation Life Church in August of this year.

Andres and Aida Rincon: Brother Rincon served as a pastor for 10 years, as Director of Education in the Dominican Republic for 12 years, as overseer of the Dominican Republic for 12 years, as the Superintendent of the Spanish Caribbean for 10 years, and most recently as Superintendent of South America. But now Brother Rincon is starting a church in Orlando. The Southeast Hispanic Region and Bishop Marcial are the sponsors for this work in Orlando.

Aubrey and Tangi Robertson: Aubrey has extensive experience as a youth pastor, associate pastor, and church planter, having planted a church in Bethany, Oklahoma in 1999. Their new church plant will be in Hudson Oaks, Texas, considered to be the fastest-growing suburb of Ft. Worth. With the Splash Kingdom Wild West waterpark, Hudson Oaks has become the place to go in East Parker County Texas. Over 370,000 people live within a 20-minute drive of the future Today.Church, scheduled to launch in September.

Shane and Amanda Tarpley: Shane is an ordained minister and he and Amanda are set to launch Verve Church in Temple, Georgia in August. Temple is located in northeastern Georgia in Carroll County, off of Highway 78. There are over 136,000 people in the county with a median age of 34. Shane has experiences in small group ministry and kid’s ministry, as well as having been a student pastor and family pastor in a local church.

Michael and Janah Williams: Michael is an ordained bishop and Janah is an exhorter in the Church of God. Both are graduates from Lee University where they sang with the Lee Singers. For the past five years, they have been worship pastors at the Sanctuary Church in Douglas, Georgia. The Williams will be planting the church, New Life Chapel, in Madison, Alabama, a suburb of Huntsville, a place where the population has doubled in the last ten years from 22,000 to more than 45,000.

Aaron and Elizabeth Troller: The Trollers were unable to be introduced to the Council in person, but have been involved as the worship pastors at Gracepointe Church in Pasco, Washington. After completing the ARC Church Planting model online, and after working closely with regional overseer Vaughn Matthews, the Trollers have been approved to move forward with planting a church in Richland, Washington – a city of about 50,000 in southeast Washington.

“As you can see, we have some great church planters here – and some 40 more already in the pipeline,” Hill explained to the Council before he called them to lay hands upon the group, launching them into ministry.

Interviews with several of the teams are posted on the home page on under the Council update graphic.

Print This Post Print This Post