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Empowered21 held the opening session of its Global Council meeting with leaders from around the world at the David Citadel Hotel in Jerusalem Tuesday. Billy Wilson, global co-chair for Empowered21 and president of Oral Roberts University laid out the vision for Empowered21 and set the stage for the Global Congress to be held in Jerusalem May 2015.
George O. Wood, general superintendent for the Assemblies of God USA and the chairman of the World Assemblies of God Fellowship, was unanimously affirmed by the global council as the new global co-chair—replacing Jack Hayford, chancellor of The Kings University. Hayford will move to be an honorary member of the Global Council.
Wilson also announced the appointment of Ossie Mills, executive vice president for University Advancement at Oral Roberts University, as the global director of Empowered21.
"Being selected to serve this esteemed group is a humbling honor," said Wood. "I have committed my life to reaching more people with the salvation message of Jesus Christ and the full power of His Spirit. This new leadership opportunity is exciting for me because we are all working toward this same end as a world conclave of ministry leaders. I pray that God continues to give us wisdom of how to impart the full power of the Holy Spirit to the world and through new generations."
Wilson thanked Hayford for his service and explained the choice of Wood as his replacement.
"I am more energized than ever with the future of the Spirit-empowered movement around the world through Empowered21. The entire Global Council is deeply thankful for the work of Dr. Hayford, who is a father to the movement all over the globe. Dr. Wood is a wonderful choice to fill the co-chair position with his international leadership and impeccable integrity," said Wilson.
"Ossie Mills is also a great addition to the E21 leadership team as we gear up for this unprecedented conference in Jerusalem in May of 2015. His executive leadership experience and global connections will serve us well," he added.
Wood was elected chief executive officer of the Assemblies of God at the 52nd General Council in August, 2007. In February of 2011 he was selected as the chairman of the World Assemblies of God Fellowship, which represents 66 million believers worldwide and is made up of over 150 fellowships.
As general superintendent of the Assemblies of God, USA, part of the largest Pentecostal denomination in the world, Wood is a member of the denomination’s Executive Leadership Team and Executive Presbytery. The church has over 12,700 congregations in the United States with over three million members and adherents.
Prior to his present position, Wood served the church as its general secretary for 14 years. He was assistant superintendent of the Southern California District from 1988-93. Wood pastored Newport-Mesa Christian Center in Costa Mesa, California, for 17 years. Sermons by Wood may be heard at georgeowood.com, more information on the Assemblies of God USA at ag.org, and more information World Assemblies of God Fellowship at worldagfellowship.org.
"I am honored to serve this important movement which has become very important to the vibrancy of the Spirit-empowered community," said Mills. "The Global Congress in Jerusalem in 2015 is a large undertaking but we serve a massive God. We believe that this event will be a stepping stone for the continued explosion of the work of the Holy Spirit around the world."
Mills will serve the regional cabinets and provide leadership to ensuring a successful global congress with thousand of Christians anticipated to band together in the Holy Land for prayer, worship and teaching. The congress is scheduled for May 19-24, 2015.
Mills has decades of experience in media, management, communications and distribution of for-profit and nonprofit organizations. He has been engaged in leadership roles in television (most recently as an executive vice president at Inspiration Networks), production, marketing, interactive communications, commerce and executive management.
The global council began the meeting with a devotional from Wayne Hilsden from King of Kings Community in Jerusalem and worship led by the churches praise team in English and Hebrew. The opening session concluded with reports from the success of the 12 regional cabinets in promoting the power of the Holy Spirit around the globe.
The council meetings were scheduled to continue with numerous events including a local pastors luncheon, excursions to the upper room and the garden tomb, a banquet with government officials along with other business of the council.