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Bishop called to the pulpit after ‘miracle' near death experience

Posted at 10:47 PM, Jul 18, 2018
and last updated 2018-07-18 23:47:33-04

A Milwaukee man is one of only 12 bishops over 10,000 pastors in the church of God and Christ. It has a membership of more than 6 million. 

Darrell and Pamela Hines started Christian Faith Fellowship church 29 years ago. They continue to strengthen lives after what they call a "miracle."

The Hines is a story of Faith, fellowship, hope and love. 

Bishop Darrell Hines and his wife Pastor Pamela Hines preach the gospel at Christian Faith Fellowship church at 86th and Good Hope in Milwaukee.

Hines was called to the pulpit in 1981 after a near-death experience.

"I got struck by lightening in 1981 my heart stopped beating for 45 minutes. When I experienced that miracle I just felt I was destined for ministry, destined to preach the gospel!" he said. 

Hines and his wife Pamela have known each other for 43 years. She was 12 and he was 15 when they met. It was love at first sight.  

"I walked in and saw him on the organ and it was heart just something just happened.....almost like when I first saw Billy Dee Williams.," Pamela Hines said.

"I knew she was too young, because we were a very strong religion and I couldn't date her or anything, but I just liked her," Bishop Hines said. 

Now after 39 years of marriage and a church with a congregation of more than 4 thousand it's a family affair for the Hines. 

Sons Brandon and DJ also minister at their parents church. 

"I'm just happy that they have a heart to do this, because it has its pluses, it has its benefits, and it has its challenges," Bishop Hines said. 

Their goal is not just to get people to church but enrich lives outside the Pews. On the ground sit a medical clinic. The Hines also oversee two schools, Darrell Lynn Hines Academy and Destiny High School. 

"It was not my choice to call it Darrell Hines school. It really wasn't. (His wife nods and smiles)," he said. "I didn't do well in school and I thought God had a good sense of humor to have a school with my name on it."

The couple hopes to set a positive example about marriage. 

Pamela Hines notes, "All families don't have a mother and a father...we encourage you to do the very best with what you have," Pamela said. 

Their ministry stresses the mind body and soul. 

"It's not just about the church, it's about the community," said the Bishop.

He warns that adults must understand the modern challenges facing our youth. 

"You have to be open to their generation. You have to be sensitive to what they feel because they don't have the patience that we had to have," he said. 

 "I think if it stops with me then I've failed. I think there has to be succession to success," he also said. 

And after almost decades of marriage the Hines are still best friends, deeply in love and committed to lifting lives and leaving a positive imprint. 

"The goal is that we can touch as many people as we can and touch as many people as we can," Bishop Hines said.