Pastor receives presidential honor
By Becky Barclay
Published in News on April 6, 2011 1:46 PM
"The Bible lets us know that if we be faithful and obedient unto the Lord, God will bless us in due time," Apostle Lawrence Bogier Jr., past of Original Tabernacle of Prayer for All People, said about receiving the President's Volunteer Service Award.
When he was 11, Apostle Lawrence Bogier Jr. says he heard God tell him that He had a special job for him later in life.
But when God came calling again while he was in early 30s, Bogier said he ran away instead of listening.
Eventually, though, he dedicated his life to God and became pastor of Original Tabernacle of Prayer for All People in Goldsboro. And it was for his actions over the last 34 years that he was recently honored with the President's Volunteer Service Award.
The award is given to those "who perform extraordinary everyday acts of service with commitment, but who seldom receive recognition."
Bogier, 70, was nominated for the award by an acquaintance, Dr. J. Talbert of Washington, D.C., who is on the president's committee for community service.
"Dr. Talbert came here and saw the work the Lord is doing and sent my name in for the award," Bogier said. "It was a great surprise."
Bogier said the award was for all the work his church is doing to make a difference in the community.
"We have a provision center for food and clothing," he said. "We feed those in need every Tuesday and Thursday from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. We cook a full dinner, too.
"We have an area called the LBJ Community Development Center where marriages, funeralizations and other programs are done to help those who cannot afford it. We have a Bible college that anyone can attend that's registered with the University of North Carolina.
"And we want to establish a day care center."
And those are just a few things that God has called Bogier to do in his church, a divine calling that he heard about 40 years ago.
"While I was in prayer, my spirit actually left my body," he said. "I knew nothing about an out-of-body experience, but I actually observed myself going through the ceiling. And I was looking at my body lying on the floor."
"A hand reached out and pulled me to the brink of a garden. And there was standing in this garden in front of me about 10 to 15 feet, a person wearing the most beautiful white gown that I've ever seen. Fear came over me and he waved for me to come closer.
"He said 'Be not afraid, I am Jesus Christ of Nazareth. I am the one that saved you and spared your life down through the years.'"
He said the Lord told him to go into the world and preach the gospel of Jesus Christ. And while it took him some time to heed that call, when he did, he said, God sent him to Goldsboro to the Original Tabernacle. Now, he said, this award is just a validation of his life's work.
"The Bible lets us know that if we be faithful and obedient unto the Lord, God will bless us in due time," Bogier said.