By Chuck Stewart, Jr.
Plattekill - Just like Bishop Collie Nathan Edwers proclaimed, it was a historical moment.
On Saturday, March 6th, New Day Tabernacle in Plattekill hosted a Episcopal Proclamation Service for Bishop-Designate Christopher J. Hodge.
Hundreds gathered for praise and worship, scripture and fellowship and to celebrate the promotion of Pastor Hodge. Bishop Collie Nathan Edwers called together the ecumenical community to join in the public declaration of Pastor Hodge, whom he called a Christian worthy of promotion within Christendom.
Christopher J. Hodge began his Christian journey at Mount Pleasant Baptist Church in Harlem, NY when he was 13 years old. He was confirmed in the faith, reaffirmed through water baptism, and ordained to the Diaconate on November 17, 1996. He preached his first sermon on May 1, 1999.
Hodge trained under Elder Collie Nathan Edwers from 1991 to 2001 at Little Friendship Unified Free Will Baptist Church in Mount Vernon, NY. While there, he held several offices such as Prayer leader, Bible Study leader, and Teen Ministry Leader, to name a few.
In 2001, Hodge was ordained to the gospel ministry, began his pastoral journey and was appointed as the Pastor and Founder of New Day Tabernacle. He was installed on Saturday, March 31, 2001 and began work on the church mission: "To seek and save that which is lost through the teaching and preaching of the glorious gospel of Jesus Christ with liberty that all may know Him." Later that same year, he would serve as District Elder of the Upper Hudson Valley in the Annual Assembly of FWC Covenant Churches.
This past Saturday, Bishop Edwers "promoted" Hodge. Edwers said, "We have verified that he is a man of God. We have examined his credentials." The Bishop told those gathered that the committee watched up close, and from a far. They spoke with several people, including his wife and deacons, about the character of Hodge. "27 people can’t lie," Bishop Edwers proclaimed.
While it was a joyous occasion, Edwers also warned Hodge, as the Devil is always at work. "Don’t assume that everyone is happy with your promotion. They’re some haters out there."
Hodge thanked all the church members, family and friends who gathered in support of, and to bear witness to, this historical moment for, not only him, but the entire New Day Tabernacle church family.