About Us

True Holiness Assemblies of Truth United International  

 Leadership Development Institute and its Shepherd Organization

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About the Leadership Development Institute

True Holiness Leadership Development Institute (LDI) is a religious, spiritual and biblical response to the needs of leaders on every level of church ministry.  It develops educational programs, designs curriculum and is a best practices leadership consulting unit for our united congregations.


In 1992, Presiding Bishop Pamela Smith was told by God to develop a college for True Holiness.  By 1993, the business model was developed and the program was initiated, in 1994.  THAT United senior leadership assisted in establishing the LDI as an official ministerial training center.  LDI faculty and staff strive to deliver adequate training and education to men and women, so that they can improve their ministerial, personal, professional positions in life.  Their success is the church’s success.


Likewise, the administrators of LDI believe that by proper education and training, people will live more productive lives and will begin to significantly contribute to their place of employment and especially in their particular leadership role in the church.


The LDI faculty designs,  implements and oversees academic and ecclesiastical skills development programs to aid each veteran and aspiring leader, whether male of female, to advance toward higher levels of personal and professional achievement.  With the right interventions in place, we believe that the barriers to perfected ministry (Ephesians 4: 11-16) can and will be eliminated.

History of THAT United International

Downtown Cincinnati

Downtown Cincinnati (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

In 1966, True Holiness Church of God was birthed out of a disparaged and scattered church group.  Elder Lewis Tolber and Evangelist Eddita Tolber were its founders. They were faithful members of The Church of God Militant Pillar and Ground of the Truth, located in a suburb of Cincinnati, Ohio for nearly two decades, whose beloved pastor was Bishop James B. Burress.


Under the Tolbers’ leadership, the True Holiness community of churches developed: the mother church was incorporated and other independent local congregations and ministries joined to form a loosely organized association of churches, throughout the states of Ohio and Kentucky of the United States of America.  At that time, each congregation agreed to share the name True Holiness Church of God.


Our founders worked to increase the association’s realm of influence, within each local community and throughout the Midwest region of the United States, until God called them home.  For more than two decades, they led a ministry of elders and evangelists that preached from house to house, church to church, city to city, and state to state; including Indiana, Kentucky, Pennsylvania, Georgia, Ohio, and Florida.


On November 1997, as God directed the new leadership, the True Holiness association of independent congregations made a covenant to incorporate the spiritual leadership of this loosely organized association of congregations into an incorporated shepherd (central) organization for national and international institutional and ministerial outreach.


In January 1998, our shepherd organization was incorporated and  named True Holiness Assemblies of Truth, which later was modified to True Holiness Assemblies of Truth United International Inc (aka THAT United International).  This fellowship of independent, covenant congregations and its national leadership agreed to expand it outreach “into all the world.”  Each congregation’s name also changed to True Holiness Covenant of Peace Assembly.


Currently, THAT United International is a networking of congregations and ministries in Southern Ohio, Northern Kentucky, Southern Indiana, with a mission in Statesboro, Georgia.  THAT United operates as the corporate voice for national and international ministries.  The mission-arms of this shepherd (central) organization are the member of each local congregation.


Our Mission

  • To evangelize the world.

  • To promote effective church government.

  • To mobilize communities and nonprofit    organizations toward social responsibility.

  • To provide leadership for the special needs of the young and the aged. 

 Our Strategy to Reach Our Goals

  1. Train and commission gifted evangelists, elders, and pastors to take the gospel of Jesus Christ to all people

  2. Offer instruction and guidance through our Leadership Development Institute, for the church and community

  3. Demonstrate to all how to live and worship God in the beauty of holiness (Psalms 29:2)

THAT United’s Ecclesiastical Structure

In the Bible, the Greek word paradosis means “tradition.”   According to Strong’s concordance, paradosis means “transmission”, and according to Young’s concordance it means “a giving over, a handing down.”


True Holiness Assemblies of Truth United has traditions that are handed down to its membership by example, by word of mouth, and through its Book of Order and Discipline and the apostolic doctrine and practice that is recorded in the Holy Scriptures  that was established by our Lord and Savior Jesus the Christ. (cf. John 17:20)


We have come to the conclusion, based upon the written word of God, that traditions are a necessary part of transmitting the knowledge of God. (cf. Book of Order, pg. 14) The Bible illustrates the necessity for traditions.  For example, Paul wrote to the church several statements about the importance of tradition.  Paul stated in   2nd Thessalonians 2:15 that these New Testament traditions were not only taught in Old Testament scripture, but also by the private instruction of the Apostles in response to the prevailing culture.


The True Holiness overseers have followed the traditions of the New Testament apostles and our anointed founders, when designing the this institution and function of THAT United’s ecclesiastical governance.  For example, in the scriptures, the apostles and elders were first called overseers of the church.  Therefore, True Holiness covenants to continue to use this concept in our description of its leadership.


Our Governance 

The Bylaws and Constitution of THAT United specify that the office of Presiding Bishop is the highest governing appointment and will be the pastor of the whole church and a teacher of this church’s faith.  This overseer exercises exercises pastoral care by giving leadership and support to the members of the Board of Bishops and Board of Elders.  The Presiding Bishop serves as:

  • The president and chief executive officer of the corporation,

  • As the chief representative of True Holiness Assemblies of Truth United International to all other organizations in which THAT United holds membership,

  • Acts as the chair of the Board of Bishops holds responsibility for the preparation of the Annual Assembly’s agenda, as well as the agenda of the Board of Bishops, and various other groups related to the national organization. 

The Board of Bishops is the highest governing body of overseers of this corporation and is representative of the unity of its subsidiaries, congregations and governing bodies of the True Holiness Covenant of Peace of Silverton, Ohio; Woodlawn, Ohio; Cincinnati (Walnut Hills), Ohio; and Northern Kentucky (Covington), Evansville, Indiana; Cincinnati Northwest (Ohio), and future congregations.


The Board of Bishops consist of the oldest qualified Elders of the united congregations, who are consecrated to the respective offices of Presiding Bishop, Apostle Bishop, Senior Bishop, Suffragan Bishop, Associate Bishop to manage the work, nurture the flock, and resolve doctrinal divisions.  The Board decides upon such religious, doctrinal, cultural, spiritual questions that cannot be settled by the local church congregations.  The Board of Bishops meet quarterly, with meetings officiated by the Presiding Bishop.  Positions are renewed or reappointed every four years. 


THAT United’s membership is comprised of spirit-filled congregations that synchronize their efforts and resources toward spiritual and humanitarian based ministry.  As the highest governing board for the national and international ministry, the Board of Bishops oversees our administration and missions & ministries divisions, which are established on the greatest commission that was given by the Lord Jesus Christ, through His Apostles. (cf. Mark 16:15-20)


From out of the united congregations,  a group of Presiding Elders were established as overseers of the four (4) main divisions of THAT United.  The divisions are Administration Division, Congregational Division, Evangelism & Missions Division and Leadership Development Division.


(Click to view Organization Chart) →  2014-16_RevisedOrgChart-2


 Introducing Our Presiding Elders

The Board of Bishops has authorized the appointments of the Presiding Elders, because the position is essential for ministerial effectiveness. Therefore, it is important for the appointee to comprehend the significance of his or her leadership role as an overseer of ministry in connection to the general vision of THAT United International. That is why continuous leadership training and development is so important for senior and subordinate leadership.

The Presiding Elder’s’ Ministry Description

While the description of  responsibilities  for the Presiding Elder is similar to that of any pastor, it is unique in that these leaders oversee the operations of an entire ministry division within this shepherding organization, of which each division is made  up of several subdivisions and each one operates concurrently.


It takes a great deal of skill to assist each subdivision to accomplish its annual mission.  Therefore it is imperative for Presiding Elders to refrain from working in the details of a ministry; they will mentor the leadership of those areas and delegate the administrative details to others.  They must guard themselves from excessive busyness, so they can devote themselves to the unique responsibilities of the following:

  1. Help Develop and Approve Procedures for each segment of their Division 

  2. Administer Policies for each segment of their Division

  3. Oversee and Manage the Direction of the entire Division

  4. Attend Board of Elders Meetings

  5. Implement the General Vision of the Board of Bishops within each Division

  6. Report to the Board of Bishops


The Presiding Elder must also have spiritual oversight. They must:

  1. Fast and Pray

  2. Protect the Division from error

  3. Promote a Christ-centered setting

  4. Provide equipping and encouragement

  5. Prove to be good examples


The Presiding Elder is a resource for the people of his or her division.

Each Division must understand that their Presiding Elder will not necessarily be the one to meet their needs, but that they will be in a better position to implement plans to help assure that their needs are met.

  • The Presiding Elder must convey the intent of the Board of Bishops to their respective Division. 

  • Presiding Elders will routinely report to the Board of Bishops and present a written quarterly report. 

  • Presiding Elders must exhibit great wisdom when dealing with issues of conflict related to their Divisional leadership. 

  • Presiding Elders must schedule regular meeting to discuss issues and to counsel and mentor the leadership under their supervision; a quarterly conference assessment should be established.

  •  They will also assist the leadership to meet their budgetary obligations.  They are not to get involved in the programs, but to lead the leaders of the programs, missions and ministries.

  • Presiding Elders should stay within their defined roles as Presiding Elders and not mimic the behaviors of a bishop; yet, they  are  prominent  leaders and should be respected as such.

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