Our Church Heritage

We have come this far by faith! Thank- ful for what God is doing, we also real- ize that many of the bless- ings we enjoy today are be- cause of the prayer and sacrifice of others in days gone by. We give honor,

glory, and thanks to God for moving upon the hearts of individual men and wom- en and giving them a desire to establish a place of worship for His name’s sake. We also give recognition to those individuals who listened to His call to build, es- tablish, and guard that place of worship now known as the Pentecostals of Billings.


Mr. & Mrs. Andrew Nelson heard and accepted the gospel presented by traveling ministers in the 1930-40s. The burden to spread God was very strong upon these two pioneers who found fulfillment in obeying Acts 1:8 – being witnesses!

Personal testimony, home meetings, house-to-house visitation, and hospital visita- tions proved fruitful. The sick were healed and sinners forgiven. Souls were added to God’s church.

The Alan Hull family were converts of the Nelsons during these early years. Their zeal led them to build a small 18x35 frame building on their property which was dedicated to the Lord in the early 1940’s.

Church Established

The small group had no pastor and were experiencing no growth. The Hulls of- fered to sell the property to the United Pentecostal Church, Northwest District. The purchase was made in early 1947 so that appropriate administration and as- signment of a pastor could take place.

In the summer of 1947, Philip G. Tolstad passed through Billings on his way home to Tacoma, WA from Tulsa Bible College in Oklahoma. God dealt with him about coming to Billings. He applied to the Northwest district of the UPC. He was approved and officially placed as the first pastor of the United Pentecostal Church of Billings – the only like church in the state of Montana.







7 PM

2335 Lewis Ave






Tuesday, November 23rd


Church Heritage continued . . .

During the time of Bro. Tolstad’s pastorate several changes occurred. The little home building was extend- ed on the existing foundation to 18x40, living quarters were added to the upstairs half story, and siding was put on the entire building. Seats were also purchased from a theatre in Butte and installed. Several families moved to Billings and joined the church family, the Joe Rubemeyer family and Bill Sapp from Washington, the Clarence Lewis family from Colorado, and the Lamar Monesmith family from Indiana.

In the summer of 1948, Bill Austin and the Tupelo quartet conducted the church’s first revival. Several people received the baptism of the Holy Ghost and at least 5 were baptized in the Yellowstone River. God blessed and the church grew in numbers. The Billings church assisted Rev. George Eads in the starting of a new work in Forsyth, Montana in 1951. In addition to financial help, several members temporarily moved to Forsyth to assist in the visitation and early efforts of the new work.

Bro. Tolstad married Pauline Mason in June 1950. He pas- tored the church until January 1952, when he became an instructor at the Tulsa Bible College as he prepared to go as a missionary to Uruguay.

Rev. Clarence and wife Elaine Lewis had served as assis- tant pastor to Bro. Tolstad for two years and accepted the pastorate to replace the Tolstads. They had four children, Jim, Donna, Esther, & Daniel and pastored here until 1955.

In 1955, Rev. W.A. and wife Edith Wilson became pastor. They had one daughter named Margaret. The church was incorporated in 1967, a few months before Pastor Wilson resigned.

Rev. Terry with his wife Dorothy Hardt became the 4th pastor in 1967. They have three sons, Nathaniel, Samuel, and Daniel. Pastor Hardt resigned in early 1970 to start a church in Laurel.

Rev. John with wife Norma Russell assumed the pastorate in May, 1970. They have one daughter named Vickie, who eventually married Scott Leonardson. They lived in Bill- ings and raised their two children Scotia and Dane here

until 2000. Pastor Russell was the 5th pastor here and had a ministry at this church spanning 37 years. During his pastorate, the church moved to its present location in 1980.

In May 2007, Rev. Edward and wife Regina Sermon joined the ranks of pastoral leadership for our church. They have two sons, Aaron and Jordan.

Church Organization Heritage

Our church is part of The United Pentecostal Church Inter- national (UPCI). The UPCI has been among the fastest growing church organizations in North America since it was formed in 1945 by the merger of the Pentecostal Church, Incorporated, and the Pentecostal Assemblies of Jesus Christ. From 617 churches listed in 1946, the UPCI in North America (United States and Canada) today lists 4,358 churches (which includes 4099 autonomous and 258 daughter works), 9,085 ministers, and reports a Sunday School attendance of 646,304. Moreover, it is also located in 175 other nations with 22,881 licensed ministers, 28,351 churches and meeting places, 652 missionaries, and a foreign constituency of over 3 million, making a to- tal worldwide constituency of more than 4,036,945.

History of the UPCI

The UPCI emerged out of the Pentecostal movement that began in Topeka, Kansas in 1901. It traces its organization- al roots to October 1916, when a large group of ministers withdrew from the Assemblies of God over the doctrinal issues of the oneness of God and water baptism in the name of Jesus Christ. The basic governmental structure of the UPCI is congregational with local churches being au- tonomous: the congregation elects its pastor and its leaders, owns its property, decides its budget, establishes its mem- bership, and conducts all necessary business. The central organization embraces a modified presbyterian system in that ministers meet in sectional, district, and general con- ferences to elect officials and to conduct business of the organization. The UPCI headquarters building, located in Hazelwood, Missouri, houses offices for its general offi- cials, the Pentecostal Publishing House, and a bookstore. Among its endorsed institutions are eight Bible colleges, a children's home, a residency for troubled young men, min- istries to those addicted to alcohol and other drugs, a chap- laincy for prisoners, and it endorses chaplains to the military.

Join our Kids as an ALL-STAR cast of players on Sunday morning, December 19th as they present, Star of Wonder, a heavenly Christmas musical for kids. Along the way you'll meet such bright luminaries as Superstar, Shooting Star, Lucky Star, Falling Star, Rock Star, the North Star and a constellation full of stars (the kids choir) as they anxiously watch the biggest announcement in history unfold–the birth of Jesus!

We are the young army of God and we are to Christ!

Come join the fellowship and fun nights on Friday nights at 7 pm and our Youth Service every Sunday morning at 10 am

Ages 12 + is welcome to come.

If you have questions please contact Alan or April Coonfare @ 855-6256

Ponder This


-“Let the thankful heart sweep through the day and, as the magnet finds the iron, so it will find, in every hour, some heavenly blessings.” Henry Ward Beecher

-“Not what we say about our blessings, but how we use them, is the true measure of our thanksgiving.”

W.T. Purkiser

-“If we do not show love to one another, the world has a right to question whether Christianity is true.”

Francis A. Schaeffer

  1 2 3 4 5 6
      Choir     Choir
      practice     Practice
  Prayer   6-6:45     5:30-6:30
  Meeting   All kids     Prayer
  7 pm   practice     7 pm
7 8 9 10 11 12 13
Daylight     All kids   YOUTH 5:30-6:30
    practice   7 PM Prayer
            7 pm
14 15 16 17 18 19 20
      Choir     Choir
      practice     Practice
      6-6:45   YOUTH 5:30-6:30
      All kids   7 PM Prayer
      practice     7 pm
21 22 23 24 25 26 27
    THANKSGIVING   Happy   No practice or
    7 PM      
28 29 30        


Chicken and Biscuit Pie



·4 tablespoons butter

·1 cup finely chopped onion

·1 rib celery, finely chopped

·1/3 cup flour

·1 1/2 cups chicken stock

·1 1/2 cups whole milk

·1/2 teaspoon dried sage

·1/2 teaspoon dried thyme

·2 1/2 cups diced cooked chicken

·2 cups vegetables of your choice (left-overs or frozen ones that have been thawed)

·Salt and pepper


·2 cups flour

·1 tablespoon baking powder

·1 teaspoon sugar

·1/2 teaspoon salt

·1/4 cup cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/4-inch pieces

·3/4 cup milk


Melt the butter on the stovetop in a Dutch oven or other oven-safe sauté pan with high sides. Stir in the onion and celery, then cover the pan and cook them for 7 to 8 minutes over medium heat, stirring occasionally. Add the flour, stirring for 1 to 2 minutes to lightly brown it.

Whisk the chicken stock into the pan. When it starts to thicken, whisk in the milk. Add the sage, thyme, chicken, and vegetables, continuing to stir until the mixture is heated through, about 5 to 7 minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Remove the pan from the stovetop and heat the oven to 375 F. Meanwhile, make the biscuit topping by combining the flour, baking powder, sugar, and salt in a mixing bowl. Add the butter and use your fingertips to rub it into the dry ingredients. Add the milk and stir briskly, just until the dough pulls together.

Flour your work surface and turn the dough onto it. Using floured hands, knead the dough two or three times, then flatten it to about 1/2 inch thick. Using a small round cutter, cut the dough into biscuits and place as many as will fit, barely touching, on top of the filling. (You can bake any extras separately, on a lightly greased pie plate, for about 15 minutes.)

Bake the potpie until the biscuits are golden brown and the filling is bubbly, about 20 to 30 minutes. Then let it cool for 5 to 10 minutes before serving it. Makes 6 to 8 servings


I have been doing a great deal of introspection of late, and I think it is way past time for me to get serious about my walk with God. I think it is past time to start doing the things I feel God wants me to do. I do not, although I know many who do, believe works have anything to do with salvation. What Jesus did on the cross was all that was needed to attain our salvation. However, I do feel that building a solid, and intimate relationship with God does.

When Jesus told the people in Matthew that He "never knew them", and yet they claimed to have done a lot for God, including prophesying in Jesus' name and the whole works, I cannot help but believe that it was because they had never established a relationship with Him. I believe that to know someone, you have to communicate with each other. God communicates with us through His Word, the Bible, and we communicate with him through prayer. So, to hear from God we must read and study and absorb His Word, and for God to hear from us we have to pray. Yes, God knows everything about us without us saying a word, but, I can know everything about a person's life by hiring a private detective to delve into his past and present, and what he hopes for his future, but that is not knowing the person, that is only knowing about the person, that he exists.

In the Bible the work "know" is often used to denote an intimate relationship such as Adam "knew" his wife and she conceived and bore a son. Mary, when told by the angel Gabriel that she was going to be the mother of the Messiah, she asked how it could be when she had never "known" a man. I think this is the intimate way Jesus was speaking of when He said I never knew you. Not of course with a sexual connotation, but with the intimacy of lovers who cannot get enough of each other, and who thinks only of each other. It is like the world around them doesn't exist as they bask in their love. I feel this is the type of relationship that God desires to have with us. I know I sure desire to have that type of relationship with Him. In the Bible we read of Moses being with God for 40 days and 40 nights and when he came down from the mountain his face glowed so greatly that they asked him to wear a hood over his head because of the brightness---that is closeness to God. I remember thinking before my sister-in-law Nancy died that she seemed to be so close to God that she almost glowed---that is closeness to God. God is no respecter of persons, so if Moses could get that close, and Nancy could get that close, then so can I. That is truly my desire, and I am sure it is yours as well. We do love the Lord, even though our actions may not always display the fact. I pray that we can get that closeness. The only way we can do so is to read His Word so we know Him, and pray so He knows us.

Remember to set your clocks back one hour on the night of Saturday, November 6th, as Daylight Saving Time ends.

Monthly Devotion

Taken from Josh McDowell’s Youth Devotions by Bob Hostetler

Never Give In!

Let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. ~ Hebrews 12:1

Winston Churchill was the prime minister of England during World War II. He led the Brit- ish people through very dark days. When Frances surrendered to Germany in June 1940, England was left alone to fight the Germans. The air force was badly outnumbered, and the nation was under almost constant attack. But even when defeat seemed certain, Churchill never gave up. Within five years Germany had been defeated, and Eu- rope was once again at peace.

On October 29, 1941, Churchill stood be- fore a gathering of students at Harrow School in England. Every voice in the room was hushed.

Every face was turned toward the great leader. Every ear strained to hear every word from the great man’s lips.

Churchill banged the podium with his fist. “Never give in!” he said. “Never give in. Never, never, never, never- in nothing, great or small, large or petty-never give in except to convictions of honor and good sense.” And with that, he sat down. His speech was over. It was probably the shortest speech that group had ever heard-and one they would remember most.

The short, simple speech expressed the spirit of Winston Churchill. It also expresses God’s will for the Christian.

You see, Churchill gave wonderful advice to the students of Harrow School when he said, “Never give in.” But God doesn’t advise us to nev- er give in; he commands it! God’s word says that we are to “run with perseverance the race marked out for us”. He commands us to “never get tired of doing good (2 Thessalonians 3:13). He says, “Don’t get discouraged and give up” (Galatians 6:9).

Are you getting tired of always being the “good” kid? God says, “Never give in!” Do you feel like you’ve been tempted so much lately that you‘re too weak to resist anymore? God says, “Never give in!” Do you feel like giving up trying to make the right choices all the time?






The new youth name, it was what the voters wanted and what God wants us to be for Him, SOLD OUT!!

God says, “Never, never, never, never, never! Never! Never give in.”

God commands us to persevere. He wants us to learn how to stick to a job. He wants us to keep trying even when we’re tired and discouraged. He wants us to nev- er give up in our efforts to make right choices. “Never give in!” he says. “Never, never, never, never, never!

Never! Never give in!”

“I am thankful for the shoes on my feet” Acacia 13

“ I am thankful that I am going to play football when I am bigger and help Brett Favre play on the Vikings” Noah 4

“ I am thankful for my nerf gun” Tyrell 10

“I am thankful for the humor in my family” Aubrey 14

“I am thankful for my crazy family” Kayla 13

Guess who wants your children...

Abuse wants your children Alcohol wants your children

Body mutilating wants your children Disobedience wants your children Drugs want your children

Busyness wants your children Godless influence wants your children Hate wants your children

Laziness wants your children Lust wants your children Molestation wants your children

Obsessive pleasure wants your children Obsessive sports wants your children Obsessive video gaming wants your children Perversion wants your children

Rebellion wants your children Sex wants your children Violence wants your children

There are so many worldly influences (spirits) vying for your child's life...

Help them make heaven their goal.

Bring them to Sunday school where they will learn Godly princi- pals that will carry them through this present world to our eternal destination...

Jesus wants your children....


Mark 8:34-35


When He had called the people to Himself, with His disciples also, He said to them,

"Whoever desires

to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me.


For whoever desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake and

Suffer the little children to come unto me, and forbid them not:

Matthew 10:14