Our Founders

This section highlights the "Dynamic Duo", Overseer Lorris H. Upshaw Sr. and Evangelist Nellie Upshaw, trailblazers in the ministry, performing the work of the Lord.  These two have laid the foundation for the future of our church ministry.

Overseer Lorris H. Upshaw Sr.

Overseer Lorris Upshaw Sr. was born in Tallahatchie County, Mississippi, to the late Columbus and Elizabeth Upshaw in 1931.  He was the youngest of ten children.  At an early age, he joined the US Army, served in the Korean War and was honorably discharged in 1954.  That same year, on June 23rd,  he was united in holy matrimony to the beautiful Nellie Copprue.



He later moved to Detroit, Michigan where he served under the late Bishop I.W. Winans at Mack Avenue COGIC and Superintendent Dan Brown at East Vernor COGIC, respectively. It was during his servitude at East Vernor COGIC that the Lord called Overseer Upshaw to the ministry.



He then founded Christ Temple COGIC and as he worked, God blessed the ministry and added to the church daily.  Therefore, after seven years, God blessed the church to move to a different, larger location, where the church became known as New Christ Temple COGIC.



Pastor Upshaw Sr. faithfully served under the Northeast Michigan Ecclesiastical Jurisdiction under the late Bishop C.J. Johnson and the current Jurisdictional Prelate, Bishop P.A. Brooks.



In 1994, Pastor Upshaw Sr. formed the Greater Metropolitan Fellowship, where he led by precept and example.  When the work of the fellowship reached its completion, he and New Christ Temple united with the Southwest Michigan Agape Ecclesiastical Jurisdiction under the leadership of Bishop Isaac King Jr., where he served as an Administrative Assistant, Financial Expediter and Superintendent of Judah District.

 

During 40 years of pastoral service, eleven ministries were birthed and countless elders, ministers, evangelists and missionaries accepted their calling.  Throughout his ministry, Overseer Upshaw spearheaded programs that fed the hungry, provided clothing throughout the community, and reached overseas ministering to those who have suffered misfortune.



On Tuesday, April 3, 2012, Overseer Lorris Upshaw Sr. was called from labor to reward.  He leaves to cherish and embrace his legacy, his precious wife, Evangelist Nellie Upshaw, their eight children, twenty-two grandchildren, thirteen great-grandchildren, a host of other relatives and friends, the Southwest Michigan Agape Ecclesiastical Jurisdiction and the "apple of his eye", the New Christ Temple COGIC family.

Evangelist Nellie Upshaw

Evangelist Nellie Upshaw is the wife to the late Overseer Lorris Upshaw Sr. and co-founder of the New Christ Temple COGIC.  She was raised in the Church of God in Christ in the state of Mississippi as the daughter of the late Pastor T.B. Copprue Sr.



She later moved to Detroit in 1955 under the leadership of Superintendent Dan Brown of East Vernor Street COGIC.  She was a member of the Northeast Diocese where she faithfully served as State Elect Lady, in the Evangelism Department and State Hospitality President.



Evangelist Nellie Upshaw is saved, sanctified and filled with the Holy Ghost.  She is a faithful, dedicated and determined soldier in the work of the Lord, and an Evangelist in her own right. God has truly blessed us through Mother Upshaw's ministry and he is yet blessing her as she continues to work in the vineyard.

On Friday, January 6, 2017, Evangelist Nellie Upshaw was called from labor to reward.  She leaves to cherish and embrace her legacy, her eight children, twenty-two grandchildren, thirteen great-grandchildren, a host of other relatives and friends, the New Christ Temple COGIC family.

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