MEET OUR PASTORS
Pastor Larry Harts was born and raised in Sterling, IL. One of eight children born to the proud parents, Frank Harts Sr. and Bobbie Harts, of whom are elders and members of City of God.
While serving in the United States Marine Corps, Pastor Harts accepted Jesus Christ as his Lord and Savior, at 21 years of age, in March of 1980. Prior to accepting Jesus into his heart, he struggled with drug and alcohol abuse, which lead to a very dark period in his life. After a near death experience, in an automobile accident, his father, Frank, pleaded with him to change his self-destructive ways. It was at that juncture in his life when he began to call upon the name of the Lord.
In August of 1982, Pastor Harts experienced a deep calling, from within, to preach the Gospel of Jesus Christ. A burning compassion to see the lost saved was his mission and goal. A love for people of every race, creed, nationality and color was the driving truth that compelled Pastor Harts to seek a deeper calling and understanding of who God was.
Honorably discharged from his seven year enlistment, in the Marine Corps, as a Staff Sergeant, and leaving Atlanta GA., Pastor Harts began his journey to answer the call to preach the Gospel, and further his ministerial education. There were several ministries that helped to mold Pastor Harts in his endeavors to know the true meaning of “Walking with God.” The churches and Pastors’ God used to help bring spiritual instruction and training was:
Macedonia Missionary Baptist Church – Served under Pastor Coleman, as Associate Minister, in Sterling, IL.
(1982 – 1983)
Antioch Missionary Baptist Church – Served under Pastor Edwards, as Associate Minister, in Riverside, CA.
(1983 – 1984)
Faith Christian Center – Served under Pastor White, as Associate Minister, in Moreno Valley, CA.
(1984 – 1986)
Word of Life Christian Center – Served under Pastor Morrison, as Associate Pastor, in Moreno Valley, CA.
(1986 – 1989)
Pastor Harts studied Leadership and Ministerial training, at “Word of Life School of Ministry” in Moreno Valley, CA, and “Agape School of Ministry”, in Yucaipa, CA, (1986 – 1999).
Saint Martin's College & Seminary - Masters Degree in the Field Of Biblical Studies. (Class Of 2017)
Bachelors Degree in the field of Biblical Studies. (Class of 2016)
After his discharge, Pastor Harts met his awesome, beautiful, wonderful, fabulous wife, Marchet, in Riverside, CA. “Her inner and outer beauty is second to none, I love her.” –Pastor Harts. They were married, and are now the proud parents of Yassminda, Gabriel and Michael. All three children are passionately involved in ministry, and work along with their parents, at City of God. Pastor Marchet is the Associate Pastor at City of God, and works as the Director of Pastoral Affairs. Pastor Marchet was ordained as an Elder in January of 1992, and is an accomplished teacher, of the Word of God. She also has direct oversight of the Women’s Ministry, coordination of conferences, training, fellowships and Children’s Ministry.
In 1990, Pastors’ Larry and Marchet submitted to the call of returning to Sterling, IL, to pioneer a ministry. One year after moving to Sterling, the couple founded World Wide Christian Center. Per Gods’ instructions, the church would not cater to any certain group, race or nationality, and the Lord wanted everyone to feel welcome. City of God is a non-denominational, Spirit filled, multi-racial, multi cultural, family oriented evangelistic ministry. Pastor’s Larry and Marchet were very careful to create the church atmosphere that God desired, and to be unique. Jesus Christ, to this day, remains the head of the ministry, and they remain to teach the uncompromising Word of God.
After much prayer and fasting, Pastor Harts was lead by the Lord to Change the name of the church to City of God, in 2007. The Lord emphasized a new name and new beginning. The scripture that was presented to Pastor Harts was Psalms 87:1-7. The scripture speaks of a City where glorious things are spoken of it. Indeed glorious things are spoken of our ministry, and Pastor Larry and Marchet possess a heart to ensure that God does get all of the glory, and we are forever reminded of such things.
January 2018 marked our 27th year at City of God, and there has been a growing excitement within our congregation, just waiting patiently to see what the Lord will do next, in the midst of us. Our vision is simple, yet profound, it is to go into the entire world and preach the Gospel of Jesus Christ. (Matthew 28:18-20)