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BART HESS AWARD

The Bartlett L. Hess Award for church vitality is given annually to the EPC church that has demonstrated the most innovative approach to church growth or revitalization. Church growth—in both its spiritual and numerical aspects—is an essential part of the mission of the church. The Hess Award provides a vehicle by which positive, reproducible innovation is encouraged and shared with others in the EPC.

Click here to download the Bartlett L. Hess Award nomination form. Save the fillable pdf to your computer, complete, then return to the Office of the General Assembly.

WHO IS BART HESS?

Dr. Bart Hess, 1910-1999

Dr. Bartlett L. (Bart) Hess was a great leader. He was a visionary. He pastored rural, ethnic, urban, and suburban churches with skill and care. He planted daughter churches and revitalized tired churches. Dr. Hess was one of the founding fathers of the EPC. All to the glory of God.

At age 86, his last pastorate was a successful interim ministry at First Presbyterian Church in Trenton, Michigan. He was age 81 when he led the team planting Knox Presbyterian Church in Ann Arbor, Michigan. For 36 years he served Ward Presbyterian Church, which had campuses in Detroit and Livonia (simultaneously for 12 years with his wife Margaret driving him between churches while he took a quick nap). Then, at the request of his presbytery, Dr. Hess focused only on Ward’s Livonia campus until it grew to some 5,000 members.

Dr. Hess believed that the people of his church were the “living stones” of 1 Peter 2:5. He counted his stones one by one, and was known for saying, “If one of the stones is missing, pastor and people need to know why.” If you were absent from his church for three Sundays, you could expect on the third Sunday afternoon his rumbling voice on the phone saying, “This is your pastor calling.” If you were a first-time visitor in his church, by Sunday evening you would have heard from him. By Monday morning your name would be on the Evangelism Pastor’s desk, and if you returned the next Sunday, Dr. Hess would greet you by name.

BART HESS AWARD RECIPIENTS

2018

Restoration Church
Munford, Tennessee
Mike Gibson, Pastor

2017

Closer to God Evangelical Presbyterian Church
Kearny, New Jersey
Valdir Reis, Pastor

2016

Ardara United Presbyterian Church
Ardara, Pennsylvania
Glenn Meyers, Pastor

Ardara

2015

Christ Church East Bay
Berkeley, California
Bart Garrett, Pastor

2014

St. Andrew’s Presbyterian Kirk
Nassau, Bahamas
Bryn MacPhail, Pastor

2013

Lake Forest Church
Huntersville, North Carolina
Mike Moses, Pastor

2012

Waterbrook Community Church
Longs, South Carolina
Tom Clymer, Pastor

2011

Tunica Presbyterian Church
Tunica, Mississippi
Paul Husband, Pastor

2010

Clayton Community Church
Clayton, California
Shawn Robinson, Pastor

2009

All Saints Church
Memphis, Tennessee
Warring Porter, Pastor

2008

City Church of Homestead
Homestead, Florida
Chris Coppolo, Pastor

2007

Greentree Community Church
Kirkwood, Missouri
Tom Ricks, Pastor

2006

Mt. Pleasant Community Church
Mt. Pleasant, Michigan
Scott McKee, Pastor

First Presbyterian Church
Houma, Louisiana
Robert Hamd, Pastor

2005

Cleveland Presbyterian Church
Abingdon, Virginia
Tom Musselman, Pastor

Goodwill Presbyterian Church
Montgomery, New York
John Torres, Pastor

Greenwood Community Church
Greenwood Village, Colorado
Tom Melton, Pastor

2004

Hope Presbyterian Church
Memphis, Tennessee
Craig Strickland, Pastor

2003

The City of Refuge
Houston, Texas
Rufus Smith IV, Pastor

2002

First Evangelical Presbyterian Church
Anna, Illinois
Steve Wilkinson, Pastor

2001

Brainerd Presbyterian Church
Chattanooga, Tennessee
Ron Ragon, Pastor

2000

Forest Hill Church
Charlotte, North Carolina
David Chadwork, Pastor

1999

Military Avenue Presbyterian Church
Detroit, Michigan
Randy Brown, Pastor

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