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Forsyth, Georgia
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July 17, 2019     The Monroe County Reporter
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July 17, 2019
 

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Page 2A _..__, Jarrell By Diane Glidewell news©mymcnnei Rev. Cleveland Jarrell is celebrating his 40th anniversary as pastor of Greater Friendship Baptist Church in‘Juliette. He was ordained and licensed as a minister in 1978 and ac- cepted the call to Greater Friendship Baptist in 197 9 when he was 37 years old. “It’s been challeng- ing but rewarding,” said Jarrell. “I give the credit of being there to God. My love for the Lord and for people have kept me there. I pastor a God- loving people. That pretty much sums it up for my longevity.” Jarrell was born and raised in Juliette, the son of Ell and Janie Mae Jar— rell. He was in the middle of their 11 children, the youngest of their six sons. He grew up attending Springhill Baptist Church in Juliette. He said he was saved at an early age and UH fill,hlv¢ 11th!" 5* 4'18 393 i? ' y" 1’ l» I' lif'lu’l'llt‘llllfl'u I 'r" [i B eRep’orter Julyl7, 2’019 marks 40 years as pastor in Juliette felt God’s call on his life but ran from it for several years. He said he surren- dered to the Lord when he was about 35 years old. “I played the prodigal, but by the grace of God he didn’t take his hands off me,” said Jarrell. As well as pastoring Greater Friendship Baptist for the last 40 years, he has also pastored New Howard Chapel Baptist Church on Lamar Road in Macon for the last 37 years. Concurrently he worked for Snapper Power Equipment Company in McDonough for 31 years. After he retired from Snapper, Jarrell began driving a school bus for Monroe County Schools and has continued to pick up middle school and high school students in Monroe County and get them to and from their classes for 12 years. For about the last nine years, his route has been in the Bolingbroke area. «.rrrlt' DELICIOUS MEXIC MENU Great variety of dishes to choose from! We Serve all your favorite beverages too! SPECIALS: . Margarita Special - Small Lime On the Rocks Two for One Bud- Draft $2 EAT IN or CARRY OUT! 478-993-2266 We are located next door to the Red Roof Inn 480 Holiday Circle, Forsyth, GA 31029 Mon Fri ilnm lilprn - 8er 11:30am 10pm Closed (Sunday “I consider it my church on wheels. I’ve seen a lot of lives change on that bus,” said Jarrell. “They start riding with one at- titude, and I see a change.” One of Jarrell’s greatest challenges has been the loss of his wife, Joanne. They had been married for 50 years before she passed away four years ago. They raised two sons; one lives in Smyrna and ‘the other in Juliette. Jarrell has one grandson, Tay Jar- rell, who is now in college. Tay is the son of Willie Morris Jarrell and Phyllis Jarrell. The congregation of Greater Friendship Baptist Church is also Jarrell’s family He has served multiple generations of some families, and for some of the members, he is the only'pastor they have known. He said he has seen the congrega— tion grow in numbers but more in spirit, wisdom and knowledge. They have been able to brick and renovate the church building so that it looks like new. Plans for the future are to build an Advancement Learn- ing Center with space for classes, fellowship and gatherings. He said Greater Friendship Baptist Church was founded 135 years ago last March. Jarrell remembers going to the church with school friends for activities when he was young. He remem- bers that the area around the church was so grown up and wooded at one time that it was hard to see the church. The King and Grier families have been long— time supporters of Greater Friendship Baptist. R.D. Cummings was pastor for 18 years before Jarrell followed him. Jarrell is proud that the church supports both local and foreign ministries. Locally it supports the Pregnancy Center and Circle of Care; in foreign ministries Feed the Children is one of its special areas of focus. Jarrell said work for these ministries is a source of blessings for the church. Jarrell is Vice Presi- dent of Monroe County’s Ministerial Alliance, which brings pastors of churches in the commu— nity together. It meets at Greater Friendship Baptist every second Saturday of the month. Jarrell said the ministers are very sup— portive of one another. Jarrell preaches at Great- er Friendship Baptist at 11 am. on the first and third Sundays of each month and at 8 am. on the sec- ond and fourth Sundays. On the second and fourth Sundays he then heads to New Howard Chapel to preach there, where an assistant pastor brings the sermon on the other two Sundays. Jarrell teaches Bible Study" every Tuesday at 6:30 pm. at Greater Friendship Baptist. Sun— day school is at 10 am. on the first and third Sun- days. He said everyone is always welcome at all of the services. Asked if he ever has trouble coming up with fresh topics for his ser- mons after 40 years, Jarrell said not at all. “I walk with the Lord daily, and he gives me top- ics,” said Jarrell. “I stay in conversation with him. Last week I talked about escape. Satan is there to trap me, but the Lord gives me ways to escape over, around, however.” Asked what he does with “free” time, when he is not pastoring at one of his churches or driving his school bus, Jarrell said it keeps him busy maintain- ing his home now that his wife is not there to help him and he enjoys watch— ()UR I‘IOMPTFOWN HOSPITAL Cleveland 8: Joanne Jarrell ing Christian television, , gaining revelation and knowledge from other ministers, now that he is ' “77 going on 120'.” “Being a pastor was more challenging as I started out. As I grew in f the Lord, it became more rewarding,” said Jar- rell. “I see the light and it’s getting brighter and brighter.” ‘My mother loved Monroe County Hospital.9 Joe Evans of Smarr always wonderful and treated her ikefami . Wort fixing Left to right: '9 Liz Evans Corbett, Buzz, Rosemary Evans, Joe Evans and Bonnie Evans. Martin , a H I The staffwas ~ ,I-I’erffa h in Monroe County HospitalWas rewarded with a long life to the age of ‘94. I miss my mother, but I’m sure she’s'looking down With pride that the hospital she loved is still here to take care of the families of Monroe County. Joe Evans, smarr, GA' 88 Martin Luther King Jr Drive V Monroe Cou F . . orsyth, GA 31029 HOSpl 31 ‘ (478) 994-2521 Ci.) NaViCCfltHCalthPartner www.monroelrospltalmrg ,--,.