Beliefs & By-Laws
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Through much prayer, fasting and Godly counsel, Pastor Gregory O. Strong and his wife Mineva stepped out on faith to God's call for them to organize a new Church family in Laurel, Maryland. On Wednesday, January 7, 2004 in a rented classroom in Laurel's Oseh Shalom Synagogue, Pastor Strong and his wife gathered with five other disciples for Bible Study – Detra Battle, Vashtaii Strong, Don and Kim Watson, and Carolyn Welch – and the seed for City of Zion Church was planted.
Over the next four months, attendance at the Bible Study steadily increased; so much so that it became necessary to add a Sunday Morning Worship Service. With God's guidance, Pastor Strong and his Elders decided upon April 11, 2004 – Easter Sunday – for the inaugural service of the fledgling congregation. A location had been secured at the Best Western Maryland Inn, located near the intersection of I-95 and Route 198 in Laurel, Maryland.
And so it was on Resurrection Sunday 2004, that approximately 50 people gathered together to celebrate the resurrection of Jesus Christ, and the full birth of a new ministry. We continued to hold Bible Study at the Synagogue and Worship Services at the hotel until space at the Synagogue became limited. In October 2004, all activities were moved to the Best Western Hotel.
We continued to worship at the Best Western Hotel (which changed over to the Holiday Inn in October 2005) for a little more than 3 more years. After much searching, the Lord directed COZ to our own building located at 14100 Laurel Park Drive, Laurel, Maryland 20707. After negotiating and reaching an agreement with the owners, the Elders of COZ signed a lease for the new property in February 2007. However due to numerous zoning challenges with the City of Laurel, we were not able to move into the new property immediately. Nevertheless after many building renovations, numerous meetings with the Mayor and City Council of Laurel, and much prayer and fasting, the Lord allowed us to move all of our activities into the new property on Sunday, January 27, 2008. Our current location was officially dedicated to the Lord Jesus Christ on Sunday, April 13, 2008.
Pastor Strong's vision for City of Zion Church is vividly described by the Apostle Luke in Acts 2:42-47 (NIV) "where all the Believers were together and had everything in common." This community is UNITED because of each person's relationship with Jesus Christ. Their unity facilitates the MANIFESTATION of God's miraculous healing and life-transforming power in the lives of all who come into the fold. The abundance of God's blessings on this community spills over and is SHARED by all who enter so that none suffer lack. The FELLOWSHIP of this community is so rich that it extends to the homes of all who partake. Each and every attribute of this community is so attractive that the "UNSAVED AND UNCHURCHED" are compelled to join. What is the name of this community or city? This is the City of our God called ZION (Ps 48: 1-2).
City of Zion Church is a non-denominational church whose vision is "Making Disciples, Serving Jesus Christ, Living Abundantly."