Church of God and Saints of Christ (COGASOC™)

Church of God and Saints of Christ (COGASOC™)

Temple Beth El
Chief Rabbi Phillip E. McNeil

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This We Believe

(A Summary of Specific Beliefs)
  1. We believe in the existence of God the Creator, the Eternal, the Absolute Ruler of the Universe, the God Yahweh revealed to our father Abraham, who is One alone and who alone is to be worshipped and glorified. To God the Creator only do we pray.
  2. We believe that God reveals Himself, speaking through His spokespersons, the prophets. We believe that prophetic revelation did not terminate in ancient Israel; that God reveals His Will continually through His prophets; that by a prophet our forefathers were delivered from Egyptian bondage, and by a prophet we shall always be preserved; that God raised up a prophet in 1892 in Guthrie, Oklahoma in the person of William Saunders Crowdy; and that the Spirit of Prophecy is relevant and operative in our lives today.
  3. We believe that the Commandments of God contained in the Holy Scriptures are immutable and are to be obeyed. Foremost among these are the Ten Commandments that we believe were divinely revealed to the prophet Moses on Mount Sinai. We believe that the Scriptures contain universal truths, universal principles, and prescriptive instructions that constitute a full and sufficient guide for the living of a spiritual, righteous, and Godly life.
  4. We believe that God knows all the thoughts and acts of human beings. However, we believe that God has endowed humans with freewill so that they have the option of obeying or disobeying God’s Commandments. We believe that God rewards those who keep His Commandments and punishes those who disobey them.
  5. We believe in the potency and the efficacy of prayer as a means of worshipping and communicating with God. We believe that God hears all prayers and that He does not favor one prayer over another, though the Disciples Prayer taught by Jesus in Matthew 6:9-14 is prominent in our private and public worship. We relish the prayers of the Siddur, and we subscribe to the ancient biblical tradition of praying three times a day.
  6. We believe that there is a resurrection, but that heaven and hell are not geographic locations.  We believe in the coming of the Messianic Age as described in the Prophets.
  7. We believe that Judaism provides a complete guide for relegating all aspects of human life to the will of God. (Judaism is for us neither a race nor a culture, but it is a manner of believing, a tried and true means through which love of, and faith in God is channeled into upright living.) We believe that adherence to its tenets promotes the keeping of the two Great Commandments: (1) Thou shalt love the LORD thy God with all thine heart… and (2) Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself….


The Almighty revealed Himself in a dream to William S. Crowdy on September 13th in Guthrie, Oklahoma This dream served as a blueprint for the religious organization that William S. Crowdy would eventually establish.


Church of God and Saints of Christ was organized and incorporated on November 8th, and Prophet Crowdy established the first Tabernacles in Emporia, Lawrence, and Topeka, Kansas.


Prophet Crowdy organized the Daughters of Jerusalem and Sisters of Mercy, a charitable auxiliary for the women of the organization, on June 26th. At this time, over 23 tabernacles had been organized in the state of Kansas alone!


The first Passover Memorial was observed in Lawrence, Kansas in April. By this year, Prophet William S. Crowdy organized several tabernacles outside of the state of Kansas in such places as Missouri, Illinois, and New York. In May, Prophet Crowdy moved to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, making it the organization’s first Headquarters.


Tabernacles were organized throughout the country, especially in the East and the Midwest, converting thousands to our faith. The tabernacle in Philadelphia has a membership of over a thousand.


In June, Prophet William S. Crowdy purchased 40 acres in Belleville (Suffolk), Virginia, which would later serve as the International Headquarters for the congregation. Prophet Crowdy also sent an emissary to establish the religious organization in Africa. Shortly after, tabernacles were established in Cuba and the West Indies.

Prophet Crowdy later set up the Union Choir Organization and the Department of Sabbath Schools, and he relocated to Washington, DC.


In April at the Passover, the institution of our royal Blue and Brown Uniforms took place in Plainfield, New Jersey. The wearing of uniforms during various services was initiated by Prophet Crowdy to eliminate the emphasis on social or economic class. Also, at this Passover, Prophet Crowdy selected Chief Evangelist Joseph W. CrowdyEvangelist William H. Plummer, Grand Father Abraham, and Elder Calvin S. Skinner, Counselor as future leaders of the congregation.


Chief Joseph W. Crowdy assumes leadership at the demise of Prophet Crowdy in August.


Until his demise on January 1, Chief J. W. Crowdy continued to preach the gospel and promote the work of the Prophet. Bishop William H. Plummer assumed leadership and moved from Boston, Massachusetts to Philadelphia.


Bishop William H. Plummer transferred headquarters from Philadelphia, PA to Belleville (Suffolk), Virginia.


By this time under the leadership of Bishop Plummer, Belleville had grown to become one of the elite African American communities in the Tidewater, Virginia area with a variety of farmlands, trades, athletic teams, and a-cappella singing groups! Also by this time, the Belleville Industrial School and Widows and Orphans Home was incorporated.


After the demise of Bishop William H. Plummer, Counselor Calvin S. Skinner consecrated Elder Howard Z. Plummer as leader of the organization on December 28th. By this time, the Men and Women’s Developing Association (M&WDA) was organized.


The Young People’s Improvement League (YPIL) was organized this year, and we first observed Founder’s Day on November 8th (now called Re-establishment Day).


The Belleville Industrial School and Widows and Orphans Home received a permanent license.


In the early 1960’s, the congregation under the leadership of Rabbi Howard Z. Plummer began to more fully embrace Judaism. Previously, the congregation practiced and adhered to some of the basic tenets of Judaism, however, did not use the terminology. Since that time the congregation has observed more of the customs and holidays mandated in the Torah.


A national brotherhood, the Sons of Abraham was organized.


Rabbi Howard Z. Plummer passed the mantle of leadership to Rabbi Levi S. Plummer in March.


By this time, Belleville Meadows, an apartment complex in Suffolk, VA, was completed. Rabbi Levi S. Plummer headed the construction of Phase One of the Temple Complex, Temple Beth El, in October 1979. Phase One was dedicated on November 8, 1980.


Phase Two of Temple Beth El was completed and dedicated at the Passover in April. By this time, the Experienced Citizens Industrial and Entertainment Center (ECIEC) was organized by Rabbi Plummer.


William H. Plummer Plaza, a 52-unit senior housing community, was erected in October.


The Centennial Era begins as the congregation celebrated the Centennial Celebration of Prophet William S. Crowdy’s Revelation on September 11-13 in Belleville. At this sacred occasion, The Saints’ Memorial, a monument commemorating the purchase of Belleville by Prophet Crowdy, was dedicated.


On August 30th – September 1st, the congregation celebrated the Centennial Celebration, commemorating the 100th anniversary of our religious organization. The Levi Solomon Plummer Learning Center, a children’s day-care center, was opened in September serving the Hampton Roads, VA area.


At the Passover, Rabbi Levi S. Plummer announced Project 2001, a 5-year fund-raising plan for the redevelopment of Belleville, our International Headquarters in Suffolk, Virginia.


The Daughters of Jerusalem and Sisters of Mercy celebrated its 100th Anniversary in August.


In October, over a thousand members and friends joined the Philadelphia, PA Tabernacle for their 100th Anniversary Celebration since their inception by Prophet William S. Crowdy.


The official web site of our organization, located at the URL was launched during the Opening Session of the General Assembly on August 6th.


Project 2001 culminates on August 11th with a grand banquet. The Suffolk Planning Commission and City Council pass the project design in September.


Rabbi Levi S. Plummer passes away on November 18th. Rabbi Jehu A. Crowdy, Jr. assumes the leadership.