History of Church of the Open Door

The Church of the Open Door is the outgrowth of Bible classes conducted in the home of Apostle Nathaniel and Mother Bessie Gibbs located at 120 Amsterdam Drive, Lilburn, GA. The Church of the Open Door was formally organized and Incorporated following a Bible Conference on August 18 – 22, 1997 in Norcross, Georgia. The church started initially with 17 members under Apostle Gibbs’ leadership. Following the first Bible Conference, there were at least four marriages performed that expanded the church’s growth. The Church of the Open Door held its Entrance Services on June 11-14, 1998 in Norcross, Georgia. Since 1999, The Church of the open Door and Apostle Gibbs has a wide vision to reach the masses through the “good news” message of Jesus Christ -both locally, in the U.S. and the world. Our long-range goal is to build a multi-purpose building not only for ministry, but a church campus with business related services, such as copies, printing, resume writing, business cards, flowers, gifts, and day care center for children and adults, or an extended day school. The Church of the Open Door is about ministering through outreach to the needs of all people – from infants, youth, adults to seniors. Through both in-reach and out-reach, Church of the Open Door has a vision to establish a school of ministry and technology. The subjects taught will include performing arts, language arts, science, technology, finance, voice, piano, speech, creative writing, and economics. The Church also has a goal to establish an assisted living, adult day care, and temporary housing for battered women & children, homeless individuals, and veterans.

In 1999, we began to develop a plan to bring the vision into reality. In August 2001, the church moved into a shopping center in Lilburn, GA and worshipped there for approximately two years. We continued worship services in Gwinnett County with a Minister of music, Mr. Lenoir Holton, from December 16, 2001 to April 14, 2002.

Mr. Holton moved from Atlanta, Georgia to accepted a radio host position in Birmingham, AL. In December 2002, Open Door moved to 2637 Flat Shoals Road in Decatur, GA.

In 2003, the Non-profit 501(c)(3) arm of the ministry began to invest funds into Camden Oaks subdivision by purchasing land and various properties, obtaining county permits, architectural drawings, and hired a commercial loan broker. The Camden Oaks project was on course from July 2003 to about July 2005. There were

several unforeseeable events that resulted in investors seeing the project as a “high cost loan” which stopped the project. However, God was merciful to us and He didn’t allow us to get the infrastructure loan to secure contractors for the underground utilities for the proposed subdivision. The stock market crashed in 2007. A U.S. economic recession would last from 2007 to 2014. On April 23-24, 2004, Church of the Open Door and New Creation in Jesus Church hosted the 1″ Relationship Conference: for Singles. Divorcees, and Married couples at the Holiday Inn Atlanta/Central in Atlanta, GA. Special guests included: Pastors Rodney & Shetecia Chastang of Agape Ministries, Mobile, AL; Pastors Marion & BJ. Relefourd- Vision of Life Ministries, Lawrenceville, GA; Pastors Dennis & Brenda Jackson-Bible Way Deliverance Ministries, Marietta, GA; Minister James C. Vinson -St. Stephens Church, Richmond, VA.

From September 4, 2005 to January 2007, we worshipped at 2623 Flat Shoals Road, Decatur, GA in a commercial building until the owner sold the property, then we moved back to our current location. In January 2005, The Church of the Open Door offered neuro-linguistic music lessons, with Ms. Beverly Orr, serving as the acting Music Minister. Apostle Gibbs serve as Senior Pastor from 1998 to 2010 and led the flock through many toils and snares. In June 2010, Apostle Gibbs took a sabbatical from the Church for a period of reflection, communion with God, and rest. During his sabbatical, Apostle Gibbs served as Bible Teacher, Unity Full Gospel Church, Mableton, GA, where Apostle Charles E. Bolar is the Senior Pastor. Apostle Gibbs served as Bible Teacher, Grace Community Fellowship Church, Mableton, GA from July 2011 to February 2013 under the leadership of Senior Pastor Frederick Caldwell. Apostle Gibbs served as Bible Teacher with Soul Winners Ministries under the leadership of Pastor Betty Baker from January to April 2013. Apostle Gibbs is grateful for his sabbatical which ended when he resumed the Pastorate of Church of the Open Door in May 2013 after gaining new perspectives, new relationships, and renewed energy, gained form his quiet time spent alone with God. Since that time, Apostle Gibbs has earned his MBA in Marketing from Argosy University and his DBA in Marketing from Capella University. Today, Apostle Gibbs and members of the Church of the Open Door are “being fully persuaded that, what he(GOD} had promised, he was (and is} able also to perform.” Romans 4:21 KJV

On September 25, 2016, the Church of the Open Door launched the second Phase of the building fund. The goal was to raise $12,000.00 to “renovate” our current facility

to “represent the Lord’s House” in a more excellent way. Christian nurture is feeding His lambs and disciplining His flock; ministering to the needs of men Is continuing the work of the Great Physician.” The church’s mission is to present Jesus Christ to the world, while we minister to the needs of hurting people as we continue the work of the Great Physician.