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Rev. Al Connor, former Pastor of HP Church of God, Gloucester City Citizen of the Year, Community Activist, WWII Navy Veteran

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Pastor Al Connor

The two most important days in your life are the day you are born and the day you find out why. Pastor, Reverend Alfred L. Conner was born July 23, 1925, in Fordwick, VA, and found his why in January 1953, when he enrolled at the School of Theology at Anderson College in Anderson, IN. The Lord was his shepherd he shall not want and had preparest a table before him. Seeing death as the end of life is like seeing the horizon as the end of the ocean. The faithful shall be set free of earthly bonds and their spirit shall soar as dove singing praise eternally. Goodbye is not forever, Goodbye is not the horizon. It simply means I will miss you until we meet again. Those we love are with the Lord, and the Lord has promised to be with us, beside still waters, in verdant pastures, and at the hour of our death. 

There are times when we make history and there are times when history makes us. So innocent were the days in the ministry and 96 years of good memories. On Thursday, September 9, 2021, we turned our husband, pastor, and father, over from time to eternity. We will bury his body but not his beliefs, his feet but not his path, and his voice but not his message. 

Reverend Conner spent his formative years in Milburn West Virginia and graduated from Kingston High School, class of 1943. His home had contributed to the manpower of our great nation, upholding the ideals of our American freedoms in the U.S. Navy as a 3rd class machinist mate on the USS Marquette during WWII, before being honorably discharged in 1946.

Following Reverend’s service to our beloved country, he received his Bachelor of Science in business administration from the West Virginia Institute of Technology and began working as an Assistant Manager for Capital Finance Corporation. True love is your soul's recognition of its counterpoint in another. Alfred recognized Geraldine Ozment at the Capital Finance Corporation in West Virginia. They were married in June of 1952 and moved to Anderson, IN shortly thereafter in January of 1953. 

During seminary, reverend managed the Christian Bookstore Gospel Trumpet Company, now Warner Press Publishing Company, and in 1957,  he received his Masters of Divinity in the Church of God and was ordained in August 1958. 

Reverend Conner’s first pastorate was in 1957. He preached at the First Church of God in Richmond, VA, and moved to Fremont, OH in 1960 where he served as Pastor of the First Church of God. In 1962 Reverend Conner became the Pastor of the Highland Park Church of God in Gloucester City, NJ. During his ministry, Pastor renovated the sanctuary, built a new addition to the Church, purchased a van for outreach and community service, and continued as Pastor until his retirement. 

Pastor Conner dedicated his life to his community. He was the founder of the Helping Hand Club, a charter member of the Gloucester City Rent Control Board, and served as the President of the Gloucester City Ministerium for 12 years. He served on the Gloucester City Juvenile Conference Committee, was a charter member of the Family Counseling Center of Gloucester City, a member of the school district’s Family Life Education Curriculum Committee, and had been a member of the Gloucester City Rotary Club. In 1980 Pastor Conner was honored by the Gloucester City Rotary and Lions Club as “Citizen of the year”. Pastor Conner was the founder and director of The Small World Nursery School, a non-parochial learning center, as District Youth Advisor and Director for the Church of God, as a counselor for CONTACT in Cherry Hill and chaplain for the local Holiday Inn Motel as well as Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital in Camden.

The goal isn’t to live forever, but to create something that will. Pastor Conner leaves his family to cherish his memory and is survived by his wife, Geraldine “Gerry” (nee Ozment) Conner. Pastor is the father of; Lynette & her husband Bruce Huntsinger, Larry & his wife Mary, Douglas & his wife Anne, Donald & his wife, Pastor Debra Conner, and Dolly & her partner Beth. Pastor Conner is the proud grandfather of 12, great grandfather of 4, and great, great grandfather of 1. 

Relatives, friends, neighbors, and a lifetime of pastor’s congregants are invited to gather with the Conner family at the Highland Park Church of God 111 Baynes Ave. Gloucester City. We’ll be sharing our heartfelt stories on Friday evening between 6:00 pm and 9:00 pm and again on Saturday morning between 9:00 am and 11:00 am. We’ll celebrate Pastor Conner’s life in faith on Saturday morning at 11:00 am. In honor of those who have sacrificed. In tribute to those who have fallen and in gratitude to those now serving, United States Navy Military honors will be rendered graveside at Eglington Cemetery, Clarksboro. To share your heartfelt stories please visit #crerancelebration #heartfelt 

As an expression of sympathy and in lieu of flowers, contributions can be made to the Highland Park Church of God 111 Baynes Ave. Gloucester City, NJ 08030 

source Etherington-Creran Funeral Home, 700 Powell Street, Gloucester City, NJ