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Church History

Refuge Temple was founded in 1995 through the vision and efforts of the late Bishop Rufus Hargrove, senior pastor of the Greater Refuge Church of Henderson, NC.  Bishop Hargrove was given a mandate to establish a church in Burlington, NC by our parent body, the Church of our Lord Jesus Christ.  Our church’s establishment is the intersection of destiny in that even as plans were being formed to establish a church in Burlington, Deacon Nathaniel and Mother Minneola Gainey of Trenton, NJ were planning to relocate to Burlington and were in prayer that a church would be established.  While ministering in New Jersey, Elder Reginald Davis met the Gainey’s and shared with them the vision of the church.  From that moment, the Gainey’s, Bishop Hargrove and Elder and Lady Davis merged their efforts and on November 19, 1995, Refuge Temple opened its doors at 127 Markham Street.  There were four in attendance in our first service—Elder Reginald Davis, the late Minister Melvin Hansard, the late Mother Evelyn Pope-Marshall and the late Mother Hazeline Davis.  Elder Davis brought the message, “God Will Finish What He Starts.”  Bishop Hargrove assigned members of Greater Refuge in Henderson to become the initial congregation of this church—Elder Reginald and Lady Charity Davis and their young son, Reginald Davis, II,  Mother Hazeline Davis, Sister Jeannie Horton, Sister Theresa Taylor, Sister Twyla Taylor and Master Jesse Taylor.  In August, 1996, Elder Reginald Davis was appointed as pastor of the church by Bishop Hargrove.  From this initial group of eight, our church grew to about 200 and larger facilities were needed to accommodate our worship and ministry needs.

In 2010 Refuge Temple, relocated to 323 Harden Street, in Graham, NC.  This relocation to larger quarters brought a harvest of souls.  Within three years over 70 additional souls were added to our congregation.  Today, Refuge Temple is a vibrant multi-cultural/multi-age congregation that serves parishioners and families in Alamance County, the Triad, the Triangle, eastern North Carolina southern Virginia and beyond.  People travel from more than 20 different communities to be a part of the ministries our church offers.

2013 brought a period of challenge and miraculous favor.  While in the midst of a growth spurt, our church was forced to move from our newly renovated location on Harden Street.  Although we still owned our Markham Street property, the Holy Spirit instructed our pastor not to return inasmuch as that would be a backwards step.  With no place else to go, our church moved its services to the Burlington Ramada Inn and Convention Center.  We worshipped there from May 2013 to August 2013.  In June 2013, one of our members, Sister Monica Wright was fasting and asking God to show her a location she could present to the pastor for consideration.  The Lord answered and she found property for sale at 152 North Main Street.  This historic building in the center of Burlington had undergone $1.4 million in renovations and was made available for a fraction of the cost.  Negotiations began and our church began holding services there on August 11, 2013.  October 16, 2013, Refuge Temple closed on this property that includes a 6700 square foot sanctuary, beautiful foyer, classrooms and offices in the heart of Burlington.  The move to Main Street has brought another surge in growth.  From our move to Main Street to now, over 100 people have been baptized and over 100 have been added to our congregation.  Our growth on Main Street has been so noteworthy that Refuge Temple was featured on the front page of our local newspaper, the Times-News on Sunday, March 20, 2016.

In addition to the numerical growth, Refuge Temple has developed ministries that serve our local congregation, the community and global missions field.  Our church currently maintains the following ministries:

  • Women’s Ministries—Missionaries, Women’s Council/MDWG
  • Youth & Family Ministries—ABYPU, Children’s Church, Campus Ministries, Singles and Couples
  • Evangelistic Ministries—Prison, Rescue Mission, Nursing Homes, Seniors’, Counseling, Family Crisis, Benevolence, Street Evangelism
  • Men’s Ministries—Brotherhood Fellowship
  • Education Ministries—Christian Education, Tutorial Ministries, Bible Institute
  • Music & Arts Ministries—Choirs, Praise & Worship Team, Liturgical Dance
  • Media Ministries—CD’s, DVD’s, Television, Internet
  • Senior Pastor’s Staff—Administration, Greeters, Ushers, Deacons, Security, Missions

Globally, our church has supported mission works in Mexico, Africa, Guyana, the Bahamas and the Dominican Republic.  Currently, Pastor Davis serves as the Bishop of the Leeward Islands that includes the Dominican Republic, St. Lucia and St. Kitts and is responsible for oversight of the churches and the schools in these Caribbean countries.  Pastor and Lady Davis have traveled as missionaries to Guyana, the Bahamas, Jamaica, Trinidad, St. Lucia, St. Kitts, the Dominican Republic, and the United Kingdom.

We have seen the hand of God on our church and we sincerely believe that “the Glory of this Latter House shall be Greater than the former…”

Come grow with us.