NEWS RELEASE – INTERNATIONAL PROPERTIES

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
 
Church of God of Prophecy International Offices
Office of the General Overseer
 

For Additional Information, Contact:
 
Shaun McKinley,
Communications Director
(423) 559-­‐5103
smckinley@cogop.org

NEW REPORT LATEST STEP IN CHURCH OF GOD OF PROPHECY’S VISION 2020 STRATEGY
 
 
A new report from ARKS, Inc. consulting firm, released on Oct. 6, 2010, has provided the Church of God of Prophecy  a clear
picture of its property value and presents multiple options for implanting the Church’s VISION  2020 strategy. Findings of the
report were presented at a special meeting attended by the General Presbyters, members of the Assembly Standing Committees
(BDP, F&S, and Administrative), the Tomlinson Center Board, and the International Offices staff.
 
VISION 2020, presented during the 96th International Assembly this past July, stresses three core values of the Church, including prayer, the harvest and leadership development.
 
During his annual report to the Assembly, General Overseer Randall E. Howard shared,

“The General Presbyters and Administrative Committee felt it would be highly beneficial to hire outside expertise to do a comprehensive study and analysis of our properties and the best uses for these. This is a part, a small component of our
Vision and Strategic Planning process going on now.”
 
Before releasing the report, Bishop Howard prefaced that the report’s findings would propel a process that would include
acting on options suggested from the consulting firm as well as the input received from the membership of the  Church.
 
“We  are grateful to our friends from ARKS for their detailed analysis of our assets,” Howard said. “Their findings are only
recommendations that must be discerned over the next few years.
 
We invite prayer and input  from all levels of the field through this phase of decision-­‐making.”
 
The report is part of a future vision and not the result of any type of “crisis” situation, Howard added, but a strategy for
 growth and avoiding future economic challenges.
 
 
“We are not in a moment of crisis,” he said. “The financial status of the International Offices has remained solid even in
the midst of economic downturn, only due to our faithful churches, leaders and members, as well as conservative investment policies.
 
In June, Raleigh, NorthCarolina-­‐based ARKS, Inc. was commissioned to evaluate the denomination’s three main campuses—the
International Offices office complex on Keith Street in Cleveland, the former Tomlinson College campus in Cleveland, and the Fields of  the  Wood biblical theme park near Murphy, North Carolina.
 
The report summarizes it’s commission by stating,“Today, with a renewed commitment to the enhancement and expansion
of leadership training, and the financial pressures facing every level of the church in every country it serves, COGOP has recognized the potential for more effective utilization  of its Cleveland assets.”
 
After months of reviewing documents, interviewing staff, inspecting buildings, factoring in external influences and analyzing
alternate actions, the group presented recommendations to COGOP leadership during the October meeting.
 

o ARKS suggested that the Keith Street campus, a 6.3 acre office complex which includes the International Offices, the
  Communications building and the White  Wing Publishing House, should be sold for a fair  market value of $8-­‐10 million.
  Church operations should then relocate to a new International Offices complex built on the former Tomlinson College
  campus on Lee Highway.
 
  o ARKS suggested that the former Tomlinson College campus, a 94 acre-­‐lot, should be redeveloped for more functionality,
  including the new International Offices complex, new and repaired Tomlinson College buildings used for leadership
development in the new Tomlinson Center, and income-­‐generating rental housing which could include senior citizen
housing and apartments.“Options for Tomlinson Center are wide and include development of a college on the campus to
considering strategic partnerships with other accredited colleges,” Howard added.
 
 
  o ARKS suggested that the Fields of the Wood biblical theme park, approximately 200 acres, be closed and developed or
  sold to alleviate a current $100,000-­‐a-­‐year budget deficit, which does not currently include repairs and restoration.
  “Options for the Fields of the Wood include everything from sale, to finding ways to make it self-­‐sustaining through
offerings or profit endeavors,” Howard added. “We do want to guarantee in the discernment process that we aim
  to maintain and augment our heritage in the  Shearer School House where the Spirit fell before 1900, the First Assembly
 House, and other locations, as well as historical writings, film,  video, and other materials that would secure our heritage
in years to come.” Howard also explained that the history of the Church of God of Prophecy extends far beyond Fields of
the Wood.
 
 
“We believe that our heritage is far wider than only the Fields of the Wood property and therefore our commitment to heritage
includes dedication to secure, preserve, and  promote our  history and heritage in its  varied forms.”
   
Bishop Howard once again explained that the recommendationsare the first step in taking action, a process that will include plenty of time for membership interaction.
 
“This information is not going to be  kept from anyone,” he said. “We want every member of this church to know that they
have a voice to express on this subject.”
 
In the year leading up to the 2012 International Assembly, convening in Louisville, Kentucky, Howard said members can express their thoughts to his office, members of the Administrative Committee, and their local/state/regional/national leadership.
 

A special email address, Vision2020@cogop.org is also available for members.
 
 
The executive summary of the ARKS report, which includes a variety of additional suggestions for each property, is available
to leadership  and  members on the Church’s web site,www.cogop.org.
 

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