Elder Ann Johnson


Rocky Mount, North Carolina

Elder Ann Johnson, age 93, departed for Glory on Sunday morning, August 23, 2020 while under hospice care near her home in Rocky Mount, NC. She was born in Edgecombe County near Rocky Mount, NC to John and Ietta Anthony, she had one brother, John Jr., all deceased. From her first marriage, there are two daughters, one son, grandchildren and great-grandchildren. She later married Reverend Russell E. Johnson who preceded her in death.

She was educated in North Carolina receiving her B.S. Degree from Fayetteville State University, Fayetteville, NC, and her master’s degree from the University of the District of Columbia, Washington, D.C. Pastor Johnson taught school for over 26 years in North Carolina and D.C.

combined. She received an Outstanding Service Award in 1975 from the Research Club of Washington, DC.

Her Christian service began in North Carolina and continued to Washington, D.C. before moving to Bristol, Tennessee. She told us that God spoke to her and said, “I’m removing you from the classroom because of greater work for my Kingdom, this prophecy will be fulfilled before the age of 55.” It came true at the age of 54. The preparation for this ministry took 10 years. She moved to Bristol, Tennessee in 1980 to continue God’s work.

Pastor Johnson and her husband attended services at New Hope Baptist Church for many years while waiting for direction from God. In January 1987 she was directed to start a church in her home and that was the beginning of New Life Gospel Church. November 13, 1987, the church was granted official church status under the supervision and direction of Pastor Iola B. Cunningham, founder and supervising elder of the New Life Gospel Church Organization of Washington, DC. The services were later moved to a building at 323 Piedmont Ave, Bristol, VA, and the name Mount Carmel Church was given by the Holy Spirit for the congregation. In November 1993, they purchased the building at 100 E. State Street, Bristol, TN. The church was renamed Mount Carmel New Life Tabernacle at that time.

During the 25th Annual Holy Convocation of the New Life Gospel Church Organization, June 2007, she was designated Elder Ann Johnson, Assistant Supervising Elder under Bishop Cunningham. In addition to the New Life Gospel Church in D.C., Pastor Johnson kept a close relationship with all the African American churches in the Tri-Cities area as well as churches in North Carolina. Pastor believed in teaching from the King James Version and living by the Word of God. It was not unusual for bible study to last two hours or more. As her health started failing her, in 2013, she made the decision to return to Rocky Mount, NC. While there she continued her service in the ministry teaching bible study and assisting with worship services. She continued to travel back to Bristol when she could and remained dedicated to the work at Mount Carmel through Deacon Walter Brown and Ministers Gaynelle Heath, Wanda Johnson, and Brenda Banks. She loved to receive calls and cards from members and always had an uplifting word when you spoke with her. Pastor’s testimony was “If I can help somebody as I travel along this way, then I know my living will not be in vain". A visitation will be held for Pastor Johnson Saturday, August 29, 2020, from 11:30 am to 12:30 pm at the Chapel of H.D. Pope Funeral Home. Graveside services will immediately follow the visitation in the Gardens of Gethsemane, Rocky Mount, North Carolina. H.D. Pope Funeral Home Home, 325 Nash Street, Rocky Mount, NC 27804.

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