The Church of God, with U.S. offices in Anderson, Indiana, began in 1881 as a movement waving the banner of salvation in Christ alone, the unity of believers, and the holiness of God’s people. Early leaders, such as Daniel S. Warner and Mary Cole, sought to forsake denominational hierarchies and formal creeds, trusting solely in the Holy Spirit as their overseer, and in the Bible as their statement of belief. These individuals saw themselves at the forefront of a movement to restore unity and holiness to God’s church. Their aim was not to establish another denomination, but to promote primary allegiance to Jesus Christ and transcend denominational loyalties. Jesus was the subject then, and Jesus is the subject today.
On June 4, 1980, a group of twelve people met at the home of Mrs. Geneva Dockery to discuss the possibility of starting what is now First Church of God in Johnson City, TN.
On July 11, 1980, the group met with the Tennessee Coordinator of the Church of God. The Coordinator ask the group to pray diligently about their intent to organize a new church.
On July 22, 1980, the original group of twelve met at the home of Mr. and Mrs. John Doyle to nominate a Worship Committee, Trustees and a church Secretary. The first Trustees were John Doyle, Tom Emery, J.L. Gentry, Graden Trentham, Conley Dockery, Luke Whittemore, and Willis Jones. The Worship Committee was William Campbell and Margaret Whittemore, and Anna Spaller became the first Secretary/Treasurer.
On July 25, 1980, a group of twenty-four met again with the Tennessee Coordinator and two other ministers. They again continued to pray.
On August 15, 1980, the original group made the final decision to establish the First Church of God. At that time, Lois Fuller was also asked to serve as trustee.
On Sept. 7, 1980, the congregation of First Church of God met at a temporary location for their first worship service with Reverend Ivan Alls providing the message.
On November 14, 1980, the First Church of God purchased the building and property at the corner of Watauga and Lamont Street. Many hours of work by members prepared the church quickly for occupation by December of that year. Rev. Dan Bullion became the first full-time pastor beginning in February, 1981.
Currently, The First Church of God has services weekly with Pastor Ron McEwen.
We sincerely invite you to come and visit with us at any time.