Evelyn Jean LaFlora was born the fifth child of eight to Elder Thomas and Pearl LaFlora in Pine Bluff, Arkansas. She accepted Jesus as her Lord and Savior at the age of 17.
Elder W. Q. Washington was the first appointed Presiding Prelate of the Second Jurisdiction of Arkansas. Bishop Washington served one day. After the sudden demise of Bishop Washington, Elder W. H. Kenderick was appointed Prelate for the new State. The elevation to this office required preparation and organization. He selected and appointed his local Music President/Director, Evelyn Jean LaFlora, as Founding President for the State Music Department. Jean, as she is called began serving at age fourteen in that capacity in the Mother Churchlocated in Pine Bluff, Arkansas where Bishop Kenderick pastored.
She began to work diligently in this role. She gathered singers and musicians from various churches that were willing and inspired to use their talents and inspired some others who felt incapable. Sister Gladys Hill was appointed Assistant President for the department and Sister V. B. McKinney as Secretary. Districts were formulated and presidents appointed who trained and built their districts, which were seven in all. This was the beginning of the State Choir. The endeavor was to minister in song and music to the glory of God so that souls would be blessed and delivered. Sister Herbertdean Thomas and Elder Wesley T. Lambert served as State musician appointees.
After the demise of Bishop Kendrick in 1957, Superintendent John L. Lewis was elevated as his successor. He did not disrupt the music department. It had really grown and was a spiritual asset to all State services.
Music and singing was always a passion for Jean. She loved Opera from childhood also classical music and, of course, gospel. She had a strong desire for voice training but her parents never knew it because she felt and knew that it would be a financial imposition on them. Seventy-six years ago Jean sang her first public solo and knew all the words. For her, singing is a gift from God enhanced with the anointing. Her background training derived from her participation in the high school glee club, the college choir, music lessons, a director’s manual, and the Sun Shine Band. Jean had the privilege of serving with such renowned National Presidents as Dr. T. C. James, Madame Anna Crocket Ford and Dr. Mattie Moss Clark. Each one contributed to her dedication in their own unique way. Her voice has been noised abroad through radio and television ministries.
As years passed and time rolled on, Bishop Lewis became the loving and devoted husband to the founding Music President, Evelyn Jean LaFlora, as God so ordained. It was wonderful but too short. She says, “He was truly alright with me in every way. I loved him dearly but I didn’t know that I could.”
Two years after she became widowed, the Lord did it again. She was married to the Bishop J. Howard Dell, Prelate of Georgia Northern, which lasted for twenty-two years. “God gave me his best, two outstanding husbands. He does all things well and I’m thankful today. I am thankful to God for allowing me to become a part of their lives.”
On our way to Georgia we attended the send-off given for me by Arkansas II Jurisdiction. Her husband was impressed. The next year in his Workers’ Conference, he appointed his wife without her consent openly as his first appointed President/Director of Georgia Northern Jurisdiction. She did it all over again. The Lord truly blessed for it was all to His glory.
Supt. Wesley T. Lambert, Jr.
June 14, 1940 – August 14, 1998
Wesley T. Lambert, Jr., son of the late Wesley T. and Viola Coogler Lambert, was born in Sheridan, Arkansas on June 1, 1940. This is where he received his early education and rearing. His life’s journeys led him to Pine Bluff, Arkansas where he graduated from C.P. Coleman High School. In 1963, he received a B.A. Degree in Sociology from the Agricultural, Mechanical and Normal College (now the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff). Always anxious to broaden his quest for knowledge, he received his M.S. Degree in Sociology from Henderson State University in Arkadelphia, Arkansas. He did further studies at the State University of New York at Oneonta, New York; the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville, the University of Central Arkansas-Conway, Arkansas and the Interdenominational Theological Center in Atlanta, Georgia.
He lived a life of consecration and service as indicated by an early salvation experience. After his conversion, the Lord gifted him with the ability to play the piano. He served as a musician for several churches including Trinity Temple (COGIC), Emmanuel (COGIC), Barraque Street Baptist Church and St. Luke A.M.E. Church.
On September 4, 1965, Wesley was united in Holy Matrimony to Bernice Smith. They were partners in life and in the ministry for over 30 years. They raised two children, Vernita and Wesley, III.
Professionally, Elder Lambert was an educator. He taught faithfully for 34 years. He began his teaching career at Batesville High School in Batesville, Arkansas. This was followed by years at Wilson High School and Malvern High School in Malvern, Arkansas. He then moved to the Pulaski County Special School District in Little Rock, Arkansas. He taught at Sylvan Hills High School, Sylvan Hills Jr. High School, Cloverdale Junior High School and Oak Grove High School. He served as Chairman of the Social Studies Department at J.A. Fair High School and at his death was employed at Northwood Jr. High School where he was named, “Teacher of the Year.” He also worked as an Adjunct Professor of Sociology at Arkansas Baptist College in Little Rock, Arkansas.
He was an active member of the Arkansas Education Association (AEA), National Education Association (NEA) and the Pulaski Association of Classroom Teachers (PACT).
Elder Lambert was a man of exceptional skill and ability. He accepted the calling of God upon his life at an early age and was licensed to preach the Gospel of Jesus Christ by Superintendent J.W. Harrison. He was later ordained by Bishop Donne L. Lindsey, Sr.
Elder Lambert served the church on all levels. He was State Minister of Music for the Second Jurisdiction of Arkansas-Church of God in Christ for 13 years and also served as a former Chairman of the Board of the National Music Department under the leadership of the late Dr. Mattie Moss Clark.
He was the Associate Minister of the Emmanuel Mission (COGIC) before becoming Pastor of Washington Memorial (COGIC) in Hot Springs, where he served for 12 years. It was here that Elder Lambert pastored the former State Supervisor, Mother Jessie B. Washington and kindled a life-long friendship with her son, Bishop F. D. Washington of New York.
He served as the Pastor of Revelation COGIC in Carlisle for 14 years and at his death was the District Superintendent of the Carlisle District. He was a renowned evangelist that traveled the length and breadth of the United States winning souls and conducting healing crusades.
Evangelist Donna Lindsey Robinson
Donna Lindsey Robinson of North Little Rock, AR has been an evangelist for more than 30 years and has been blessed to speak at many churches and venues from Women’s Days to Music Events in several states and denominations across the continental United States. Her ministry is far-reaching and cross-cultural. Robinson has spent many years as a "go to" person for ministries in need of support. She has consulted and acted as pastor to congregations. Her gift of speaking includes a very clear, "real" and concise message that comes straight from the Bible. Evangelist Robinson is a member of The Worship Center Church of God In Christ in North Little Rock, AR., Bishop D. L. Lindsey is Senior Pastor. She serves there on the Spiritual Ministering Team speaking and teaching regularly. She serves the International Church of God in Christ as a member of the General Assembly Committee on Standards and Extensions. She oversees the Women's Ministries and works in administration. She formerly attended New Calvary Temple COGIC also pastored by her father, Bishop Lindsey. She served on the staff of Associate Ministers, is a Sunday School Teacher, a Greeter, a Missionary Alliance Board member and also serves as an Executive Ministry coordinator of several other ministries. She is a capable leader who gets things done.
Robinson is a magnet to young ladies who need a role model and serves to "mother" support and care for many. Her ministry in this area is extensive. Her ability to show the love of Christ by "any means necessary" makes her a Spiritual Mother that is much needed in this day and time. Her desire to provide Hope for the Hurting is very evident in her ministry style.
Further, Robinson has served as the Arkansas' Second Jurisdiction COGIC as the State Evangelism Department's Elect Lady. She also served 17 years as the Arkansas Second Jurisdiction COGIC's Minister of Music. Robinson served as the Overseer of the Unity Church of God in Christ in Hot Springs, AR. Evangelist Robinson is a graduate of Philander Smith College with Bachelor of Arts Degree in Sociology and has worked in social work in the protection of children and families. She is a graduate of Lee’s School of Cosmetology and spent 18 years as the owner of New Attitude Salon in North Little Rock. Her other studies include courses at the University of Arkansas (Fayetteville) and Jackson Theological Seminary.
Evangelist Donna Robinson is the eldest daughter of Bishop and Madame D.L. Lindsey. Her family is completed as the wife of Larry, and proud mother and grandmother.