COLUMBUS, Ind. — Forty-seven years later, Bishop Charles A. Sims still remembers the first message he preached in September 1975 at then-Calvary Pentecostal Church in downtown Columbus. He believes the sermon title continues to resonate with the same solid truth as it did that morning in 1975: “This Job is Too Big For Me, But Just Right for God.”
The 77-year-old clergyman, among the longest serving pastors ever locally with his wife and co-Pastor Jane Sims, has been a big voice for racial equality at seemingly just the right time — when more minorities were moving into the area to take jobs with worldwide firms.
And Jane Sims has been an equally large voice for women in leadership, especially in churches. She and her husband each were part of the fight in which their own denomination recently decided women could serve as bishops.
“We’ve made some strides in those areas,” Pastor Jane Sims said. “And I believe we have been able to have some impact, including upon the general (church) relationships between males and females.”
The Sims couple, retiring from full-time church leadership but not from Christian ministry such as writing books and some teaching, will be honored at a celebratory community banquet currently being rescheduled as the elder Sims recovers from COVID-19. The pair’s final worship service, originally meant to be this Sunday at now-Calvary Community Church at 11th and Chestnut streets, also is being delayed slightly because of the health situation, according to staff.
The bishop, known to sometimes be playful in the pulpit for comic relief, chuckled when asked if either the banquet or his final service would be emotional.
“I don’t have any idea,” he said.
“(Banquet) organizers are keeping a lot of things under their hat,” Jane Sims said with a laugh of her own.
For the complete story, see Thursday’s Republic.