“I really would like Mt. Rubideaux church to set a new paradim shift for ministry and Adventism,” explains Kelly. Adventism has told us that this is the way you have to do ministry and anything different is unacheivable. You can have a ministry that reaches unchurched people and impacts the community. Not where we just do a program, but people come with their issues and we follow up.” If you come to us in financial bondage, you will experience financial freedom . If you come to us sick, you will be made well. Now the rumor spreads around the community that “I went to Rubideaux looking like this, and after they poured in to me, my family is better, my finances are better, my health is better and my spirituality is better.” They expeience real life change through the ministry of the church, so much so that the community talks about it.
One direct example of community impact came from a gathering held at Mt. Rubi called State of Emergency. After the shootings of Alton Sterling and Philando Castile, pastor Kelly organized a meeting to talk about the issues.
Surprisingly enough, the community showed up more than the church. Groups such as NAACP, ICUP, police coalition for accountability came together and asked the question, what do we want our community to look like as it relates to social justice? Community leaders gathered ideas and after several meetings, pastor Kelly and entrepreneur, Kevin Carrington, came up with steps to reflect the image the community wants to see. These steps include gathering data, forming alliances bill and law drafting and community development.
After these meeting, it was apparent that they needed to form a coalition and that is the story of Together for Justice, a 501(c)(3) organization. With the collaboration of elected officials, journalist and law makers, Together for Justice targets social economics, criminal justice reform, health and education.
With church and community working in conjunction for chance, Together for Justice models themselves after the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC). The SCLC was formed in 1957, when sixty black ministers and civil rights leaders met in Atlanta, Georgia in an effort to replicate the successful strategy and tactics of the recently concluded Montgomery, Alabama bus boycott. Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. was chosen as the first president of this new group dedicated to abolishing legalized segregation and ending the disfranchisement of black southerners in a non-violent manner. “The community came together and the church was the glue,” explains Kelly. Later SCLC would address the issues of war and poverty.
Pastor Kelly believes in a focused yet multi-dimensional ministry. He refers to the next generation of leaders as the “Joshua Generation.” “When they focus their energy and passion they can do it all. They are waiting to be connected to someone who is not afraid to step out and says what needs to be said.” Because of this Pastor Kelly has sought other avenues by which to bring the Kingdom to the community. One of which is through leadership training and team building for churches and businesses.
Stay connected with Pastah Kelly
Twitter | @pastahkelly
Instagram | @pastormichaelkellyii
Facebook | Mt. Rubidoux SDA Church
Website | mtrubidouxsda.org