New Hope hosting pastors, leaders conference

Published 12:10 am Tuesday, October 21, 2014

NATCHEZ Church, civil and community leaders from across the state will gather in Natchez this week to take a page from the leadership book of New Hope the Vision Center.

The Morgantown Road church will host its annual pastors and leaders conference, titled “Standing Victoriously,” today through Friday in hopes of molding the visions of those wanting to do great things in their community, the Rev. Stanley Searcy said.

“We try to give these people who have a vision for some kind of community development program in their area all the tools they need to make that vision a reality,” Searcy said. “We do this conference every year, but this time, we really wanted to impress upon the community development side of things.”

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Searcy said he hopes to impart the experiences members of New Hope have gone through in the past with their community development projects to help others with their projects.

The church has constructed the Washington Apartments, a community and housing development near the church, and is also preparing to renovate Brumfield Apartments to convert into another housing development.

“I talk to all these pastors who have a vision, whether it be for an after-school program or senior care or veterans program, so we want to help them get to where they want to be,” Searcy said. “Me and my community development team will be leading classes to train them from the beginning of the process and go all the way through to show them what has to be done to get there.”

The classes and other events will be hosted each night at the church and will be offered free of charge to anyone interested in attending.

“We want to invite anybody and everybody that has a vision for their community and wants to learn these processes,” Searcy said. “We want to help them fulfill and build their communities to become better.”

Searcy asks those interested in attending to register for the event for free at

A variety of guests will speak throughout the conference each night, including Gospel recording artist Marvin Winans.

Winans, who preached the eulogy at Whitney Houston’s funeral in 2012, will be the featured guest minister of the event, and is scheduled to speak Friday evening.

Searcy said his goal for the event is for those in attendance to leave the conference energized to create change in their community.

“If I can get 10 pastors to go out and fulfill their visions and make their goals, I’m going to be grateful,” Searcy said. “We want to see these leaders help build our state even stronger.”