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Riverhills cog || Tampa, Fl
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Post Like A Tree
There was another man that came right after MW. That was the year of the hurricanes and he stayed 2 yrs then came JD Simmons. There is a lot that could be said about both of them and how each one ran the church. Again, there is a whole story that could be said why neither one of them was right for the church and how we didn't have enough information given when pretty much forced to pick both of them. Each of them in very different ways. Even though I am stating and I want to make it clear that I believe most of this happened because of the state office at the time. There were councilmen and very dedicated members that tried to have a voice in a lot of what was going wrong but were never taken seriously and were treated very badly. Let's just say the men that are still on the council even now are half to blame for things that have gone on . Always wanting to look good in the eyes of whoever is pastor at that time instead of sticking up for staff and congregational members and best interest for the church, just saying. Still going on even as we speak.

To answer your other questions, a few have moved on to Dempsey's church. Some have moved on to City Life and some have moved on to Plant City. Some have even moved on to other churches not part of the Church of God. Pretty much scattered over the Florida.

Dempsey's church does OK and has benefitted from members that follow him but it still is not the same. If you talk to anyone who use to attend in the time frame from Robert to Williams they will tell you there isn't a church around like Riverhills was.
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4/25/17 12:24 pm


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Post Like A Tree Lonestar
Thank you for your insight.

Last question: Does RH still own the property on 46th?
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4/25/17 1:48 pm


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Post Like A Tree
That I am not sure of. South Florida Man might know the answer to that one. Like it was stated in another post it is holding on by a thread financially. If it weren't for the school and other church renting I don't know if it would still be standing. I know they have cut the church staff down to nothing and have sold just about everything that wasn't bolted to the floor. If I find out I will give you an answer. Wink Member
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4/25/17 1:57 pm


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Post SouthFloridaman
The main campus is now 6310 E. Sligh Ave. the other property has been sold. Friendly Face
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4/28/17 8:14 pm


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Post Orchestrated SouthFloridaman
Like A Tree wrote:
The problem now he faces is that the small congregation that is there half of them are existing older people of the original congregation but are to set in there ways and do not want to start over and do not want Wolever to go through with this plan of his. They want an outside person to come and try to regain what they once had in a pastor/leader. The other half are new to the church and do not know the history and don't care if this takes place or not. The church is truly split.


I would say AW orchestrated this to be split the way it is. The elder council of the church has been shuffled in such a way that to stand against anything but AW's decision would cause a rift in the church. Any elder that stood up to AW or RS has been pushed into an Honorary (non voting) Elder Role. To think of the amount of Godly men stripped of there position in the church and then to have AW brag from the pulpit that you could not get rid of me if you tried is appalling when you have a good moral reason and no one will listen because of the pass AW has been given by Cleveland. When you have a good portion of the elders family employed directly or indirectly by they church or the schools that rent from your church your not going to stand up against your boss AW or RS. Too many conflicts of interest on the elders board. It has been orchastrated by aw to function this way for along time. I know there was a hit on elders. elders were purged because they were not with the AW's program. AW's master plan was to make all decisions in the church go to 3 people. I know al wolever would have retired a long time ago if RS became pastor. My question is why does RS have to be pastor. Are there things that could be exposed if someone other then RS comes in?
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4/28/17 9:47 pm


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Post Cojak
This is disheartening to read. We have attended River Side only a couple times a few years ago, we were blessed. At the time we were on a mission to locate someone we knew in the USAF. We missed them but enjoyed the service. It seemed to be a church with a purpose.

I despise splits in a church, and I hope this is only perceived. Most splits could be avoided with the right leadership and prayer. That is my opinion. I am amazed at people who 'encourage' splits by their actions.

My prayers are with the core and the church as a whole. Embarassed
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4/29/17 10:41 pm


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Post Like A Tree
Just because a pastor and or MOM is in place at a church doesn't always state that the congregation is happy with them. I understand that if the church is healthy and strong and no doubt that the people love, respect and are on board with the pastors vision that this would seem to be the logical solution. There might be a case where a pastor and a successor work hand in hand to make a clean transition and everyone would be happy.

BUTTTTT if the church has dwindled down and it is very obvious that the church is just longing for the day that the pastor retires why should he be allowed to groom his successor. He hasn't been healthy for the church so why should he have anything to say in the matter. The voice of the people should be heard and not only the pastor and his certain council men.
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5/1/17 3:32 pm


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Post SouthFloridaman
The successor is the lesser of the 2 evils in the eyes of the congregation and the church will take anyway out at this point. When a church has fought as hard as Riverhills to remove a pastor and all valid honest reasonable concerns have fallen on deaf ears or have been actively ignored for years the issue is deeper seated. international office will not allow him to be removed for fear of them becoming a lose cannon revealing things is a problem. Ego for one could play a factor not wanting to admit the pastoral placement was wrong fit. I think it is more sinister then that. What else can explain it at this point. I am just being reasonable here. Any theory is at play at this point. If speculation is a problem please end our speculation with a decision riverhills is losing givers by the day and there is only so much building you can rent. At this point I need to know if leadership is going to continue as it is and if so it is time for them to abandonship and head for Godly leadership whether it be inside or outside the Church of God . Because what has happened can't be ignored any longer.

Last edited by SouthFloridaman on 5/15/17 4:23 pm; edited 1 time in total
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5/2/17 12:17 pm


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Post Like A Tree
I believe exams are today or at least that is what I read. So I guess we will all see what happens with this situation in the next few weeks.?.?.? Member
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5/9/17 11:52 am


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Post SouthFloridaman
I pray that open and HONEST dialogue with all FACTS on table will occurr Before this announcement is made. If a vote was taken those in attendance were not adequately informed. I can assure if facts were known opinions would flip. I don't want to make that decision. Friendly Face
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5/11/17 11:21 am


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Post FLRon
I'm curious as to whether or not a pastor named Heath was ever at Riverhills? I knew him from Ohio and he left there for a church in Tampa but I never knew which church he was at there. I just know he didn't stay very long and last I heard he is out of the ministry now. Friendly Face
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5/13/17 11:55 am


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Post Like A Tree
Yes, Heath is the guy I referenced in a couple of my posts. He was the one that was given to us during all of the hurricanes. I rather not go into detail due to there is a lot to say over that situation. If you want to know details you can pm me. The decline of this church started when MW left and CH came. Member
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5/13/17 1:05 pm


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Post FLRon
Like A Tree wrote:
Yes, Heath is the guy I referenced in a couple of my posts. He was the one that was given to us during all of the hurricanes. I rather not go into detail due to there is a lot to say over that situation. If you want to know details you can pm me. The decline of this church started when MW left and CH came.


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5/15/17 9:51 am


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Post SouthFloridaman
We been waiting for a response since November I guess a few more weeks won't hurt. I would like to know who is in the running. A fresh face would bring a lot of credibility to this congregation. Friendly Face
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5/15/17 10:10 pm


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Post Re: What is the attendance at RH? Like A Tree
MissTex wrote:
I remember back in the '90's when Dan Dempsey was pastor and Steve Allen served as the MOM, the church was running 1200 to 1500.




Yes, that was a very special and exciting time. We had the cream of the crop for years. Like I said:

Pastors
Phil Roberts, James Byrd/Robert Shepherd, Dan Dempsey, Mark Williams

MOM
Charles Grant, Bill Jones, Steve Allen

Youth
Bruce Deal, Chuck Ramsey, Kevin Harris, Brett Jarreil

A nice Christian school and wonderful daycare.

Then it was gone. CH, JDS then AW
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5/16/17 7:29 am


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Post Re: What is the attendance at RH? Lonestar
Like A Tree wrote:
MissTex wrote:
I remember back in the '90's when Dan Dempsey was pastor and Steve Allen served as the MOM, the church was running 1200 to 1500.




Yes, that was a very special and exciting time. We had the cream of the crop for years. Like I said:

Pastors
Phil Roberts, James Byrd/Robert Shepherd, Dan Dempsey, Mark Williams

MOM
Charles Grant, Bill Jones, Steve Allen

Youth
Bruce Deal, Chuck Ramsey, Kevin Harris, Brett Jarreil

A nice Christian school and wonderful daycare.

Then it was gone. CH, JDS then AW


I never connected the dots that Robert Shepherd was pastor at RH; Scott and then-wife Lisa were my youth pastors at Orange Avenue in Orlando and I knew he attended RCS.

At RH, Lindell and Sharla Austin served as my YPs.
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5/16/17 2:22 pm


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Post Like A Tree
Yes, Brother Byrd was the pastor and Bro Shepherd was the associate pastor/principal at the school.

I grew up knowing Scott (and met Lisa at LEE). I also know Tony Byrd, Sean O'Neal, Lindel and Sharla. There probably isn't anyone that attended the church within the last 40 yrs that I do not know.

Just the new people from the last 5 years are the ones that I do not know. I had to leave after Wolever got there. Could not take another one destroying the church more than what it had already been reduced too.

My history with this church is an understatement. Very Happy
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5/16/17 2:57 pm


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Post Lonestar
Like A Tree wrote:
Yes, Brother Byrd was the pastor and Bro Shepherd was the associate pastor/principal at the school.

I grew up knowing Scott (and met Lisa at LEE). I also know Tony Byrd, Sean O'Neal, Lindel and Sharla. There probably isn't anyone that attended the church within the last 40 yrs that I do not know.

Just the new people from the last 5 years are the ones that I do not know. I had to leave after Wolever got there. Could not take another one destroying the church more than what it had already been reduced too.

My history with this church is an understatement. Very Happy


The O'Neal's are from Fort Worth, TX -- what was Sean's role at RH?
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5/16/17 3:12 pm


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Post Like A Tree
If it is the same Sean O'Neal he was raised in Florida. I am talking way back around preschool and youth group age.

People on here and in general have no idea what an influence that this church has had within the COG. We have had ministers of all aspects born from this church. YP, mom, musicians, and pastors. Not only has this church produced such a broad span of leaders but have had a strong broad span of leaders one time or another come here.

Our choir and praise team was always the feature music at the Florida campmeetings. That is not the nights that the Miller's were.

Our choir did demos for Dalton Alford and such. We have sung along big names and have cut many CD's that were as professional as any other.

At one time many years ago you could not be at Lee College without running into someone that attended Riverhills. Yes I get that right to be proud of what we once were.

This was an awesome church that the Holy Spirit moved everytime the doors would open. The choir and along with the preaching was second to none.

What has happen and what is happening is just sad. My heart breaks.
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5/16/17 3:25 pm


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Post Like A Tree: PM Sent Lonestar
Like A Tree wrote:
If it is the same Sean O'Neal he was raised in Florida. I am talking way back around preschool and youth group age.

People on here and in general have no idea what an influence that this church has had within the COG. We have had ministers of all aspects born from this church. YP, mom, musicians, and pastors. Not only has this church produced such a broad span of leaders but have had a strong broad span of leaders one time or another come here.

Our choir and praise team was always the feature music at the Florida campmeetings. That is not the nights that the Miller's were.

Our choir did demos for Dalton Alford and such. We have sung along big names and have cut many CD's that were as professional as any other.

At one time many years ago you could not be at Lee College without running into someone that attended Riverhills. Yes I get that right to be proud of what we once were.

This was an awesome church that the Holy Spirit moved everytime the doors would open. The choir and along with the preaching was second to none.

What has happen and what is happening is just sad. My heart breaks.


PM sent.
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5/16/17 3:33 pm


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