Date Founded: 1897
Membership/Number of Clergy: 6,000,000/ as of 2014.
Headquarters: 930 Mason Street, Memphis, TN 38126
Schools & Seminaries: Charles H. Mason Theological Seminary
Core Beliefs: See the Statement of Faith.
We believe that the Baptism of the Holy Ghost is an experience subsequent to conversion and sanctification and that tongue-speaking is the consequence of the baptism in the Holy Ghost with the manifestations of the fruit of the spirit (Galatians 5:22-23; Acts 10:46, 19:1-6). We believe that we are not baptized with the Holy Ghost in order to be saved (Acts 19:1-6; John 3:5). When one receives a baptismal Holy Ghost experience, we believe one will speak with a tongue unknown to oneself according to the sovereign will of Christ. To be filled with the Spirit means to be Spirit controlled as expressed by Paul in Ephesians 5:18-19. Since the charismatic demonstrations were necessary to help the early church to be successful in implementing the command of Christ, we therefore, believe that a Holy Ghost experience is mandatory for all men today.
Short History: Founded by Elder Charles Harrison Mason who was a Baptist preacher who became sanctified and started a revival in Jackson, MS in 1896. Disagreeing with some Baptist precepts and finding Baptist pulpits unwelcoming, he continued his revival in a warehouse until 1897 when the new denomination was formed. In 1907 the denomination split over the issue of receiving the Holy Ghost and speaking in tongues promoted by Elder Mason. It is the largest African-American Pentecostal denomination in the U.S.
Local Churches: There are six COGIC churches in Louisville. The closest to campus is Tabernacle of Praise COGIC, 729 East Saint Catherine Street, Louisville, KY 40203. To see the others, visit the Church Listing on the Kentucky First Ecclesiastical Jurisdiction website. There is no church finder on the main COGIC website.