NEW LIFE DELIVERANCE TEMPLE’S HISTORY AND VISION
HISTORY AND VISION PERSPECTIVE
In the mid 1980’s, the Lord led a pastor with less than 50 members to embark upon a journey to establish a ministry on St. Helena Island, SC. These pioneers believed the ‘Lord would never leave them, nor forsake them and would be with them always,’ and God has been true to His word! The pastor, Bishop Fred Brown, led these pioneers through wildernesses of Frissell Community Hall at the Penn Center Campus, Freeborn Deliverance Temple in Port Royal and other temporary worship locations. Eventually, property in an area called Indian Hill was purchased from Rev. Arthur and Sis Zezalee Smalls. Thus began the inception of the idea of a church structure and the name ‘New Life Deliverance Temple’ was born!
Out of the remaining members, persons were chosen to direct the general activities of the building and specifications for the church. Though the task was arduous, the results were a modern facility, which reflected beauty and represented what a few people possessing unity could accomplish. In 1988 under the direction of Bishop Brown, the congregation was led into their new facility! The pioneers, who are now deceased, were Deacon ‘Candy’ Ben Johnson, who was head deacon, his wife, Mother Helen ‘Pink’ Johnson, who was the first church mother, Sis Rena Daise, Sister Elsie “Lemon” Scott, and Evangelist Daisydene Smalls McKnight Bolles, our second church mother. New Life Deliverance Temple was blessed to have the late Assistant Pastor Robbie McKnight Bolles, one of our last, legacy pioneers. Other pioneers, are still operating within the church and being a blessing to the kingdom of God.
Often music at the beginning of ministry is difficult because of the painstaking forming of voices into a melodious sound. However, this was not the testimony of New Life Deliverance Temple. God gave our ministry special people who allowed the Holy Ghost to sing through them. This choir was instrumental in helping our ministry become established as they ministered in song all through the lowcountry.
New Life Deliverance Temple has been blessed to have three pastors, with one of the pastors serving two times. Bishop Fred Brown served faithfully and released the pastoral reins, continuing his ministry in Burton, SC. During this transition, God sent us Elder Daniel L. Russell, Jr., who was currently in the United States Marines. He thought his stay was temporary but eventually the tenure solidified. Pastor Russell was unique and did not fulfill the status quo of a ‘normal pastor.’ He was from the Nation’s Capitol and brought vision resulting in power, purpose and professionalism! Under his leadership the church grew to over 200 members and over twenty ministries of helps were established.
In 1997, Pastor Russell turned over the pastoral reins to Elder Bolles, who led the ministry until another pastor was sought. Pastor Freddie L. Solomon, Jr. was selected to assume the pastoral role at New Life Deliverance Temple. The church maintained its stability and continued its quest to fulfill the mandate of the great commission, which is for people to come to Christ. Under Pastor Solomon’s tenure, the church purchased a parsonage in Port Royal, SC and also purchased seven acres in Burton, SC. Pastor Solomon served faithfully for nine years and after much prayer decided to accept another challenge of ministry, elsewhere in SC.
In August 2007, a call was made to Pastor D.L. Russell Jr., who was at the time, living in Winston Salem, NC with his wife Judy. Both had furthered their education in undergrad and grad school and had served faithfully in ministry at Mount Calvary Holy Church, Winston Salem, NC. Pastor Russell was the Senior Pastor for five years, with his wife, Judy serving in several ministerial capacities. Pastor Russell had released the pastoral reins of Mount Calvary and was operating and traveling as the National Elder for Mount Calvary, working as a full-time Deputy Sheriff and assisting Judy in her Home Health Care Agency. However, after receiving this call from their ‘first love’ they left all and returned to St. Helena Is., SC. Pastor Russell and Judy returned to New Life Deliverance Temple and the church gladly received both of them, installing him as Pastor on September 5, 2007!
Pastor Russell’s second time at New Life Deliverance Temple is following the scripture of ‘the latter shall be greater than the former!’ With the return of Pastor D.L. Russell, Jr., the church is and will continue to reach its zenith in ministry. Under the tutelage of Pastor Russell, the church has experienced growth in membership and the constant upgrading of the facility. New Life Christian Academy, a ministry of New Life Deliverance Temple, began under the administration and leadership of Pastor D.L. Russell, Jr. in 2010. New Life Christian Academy has been used of God to train boys and girls in the Beaufort County area to provide a holistic education for children of all ages, creeds, and cultures. There are plans of building a Family Life Center to enhance the St. Helena Island Community. Pastor Russell has many idioms, but the one that stood out which has been true to form is the ‘GAP’ program… and that is “God’s Accelerated Program!”
Though there have been difficult transitional experiences during the evolvement of ministry attainment, New Life Deliverance Temple scriptural motto was and will always be ‘God will never leave us nor forsake us and will be with us always!’