Pastor Vern L. Cooper was born August 4, 1950, and spent most of his adolescent life in Houston’s Third Ward, where he attended public schools in the Houston Independent School District, graduating with honors from Jack Yates High School in 1968.
While God has certainly blessed Pastor Cooper in his professional career, all you have to do is talk to him for a short time to know that his real passion is with the church. He was baptized as a young child, at the Calvary Hill Missionary Baptist Church, under the leadership of Pastor B. R. Williams. As a 12 year old child his Pastor’s mother saw in him what he didn’t see in himself and always referred to him as …”little preacher”. Pastor held many positions at Calvary Hill, including Brotherhood Instructor and President, Sunday School Teacher and Superintendent, Deacon and Trustee. With Calvary Hill’s affiliation with the Southern District Association of Brazoria, Texas, he held the positions of Brotherhood Instructor and Vice-President. All those offices and positions were simply a “boot camp” experience for where the Lord was preparing to take him. After a pickup game of football where Pastor hurt his ankle and knee, God healed him, truly came into his life as his personal savior, and called him to preach. Pastor will tell you there are a number of dates that he will never forget but some of the most important are, Jan. 6, 1973 (his wedding date); Apr. 12, 1974 (Nicole’s birthdate); Aug. 7, 1978 (Kimberley’s birthdate); Jan. 25, 2005 (Madison’s Birthdate); and Sep. 3, 1978 (God saved him and called him to preach). After a number of years “serving well” on someone else’s mountain God did for him what he had done for Caleb.
In April of 1985, God gave Pastor Cooper his own mountain, when a small body of believers at the Ark of Restitution called him to be their Pastor. Their former pastor had died and there were only 12 members at the time and 5 of them left, not being happy with the decision. There have been ups and there have been downs but God has remained faithful. The church under the leadership of Pastor Cooper has made several purchases including a $1.4 million facility that they triumphantly entered in January of 2012.
Over the years, Pastor Cooper in his own words, “never gets sick” and has seemingly boundless energy. He loves his family and people in general. His simple pursuit in life is to help people to be all that God has called them to be. His favorite scripture in the bible is Galatians 6:9 … “And be not weary in well doing, for in due season, you will reap if you faint not”. That thought alone keeps him trusting in the God that is able to keep us from falling. Because of that and the fact that he understands that for much given, much is required, he tries to put himself in the lives of others and be a blessing to all whom God places in his path. His family has been instructed that when the Lord calls him home that someone would sing at his home going celebration … “May the Works I’ve Done Speak for me”.
Pastor Cooper now serves as the President and Founder of Menefee Consulting, an Information Technology consulting firm; Pastor of the Ark of Restitution; President and Founder of Lifeboat Ministries, a faith based organization designed for the total improvement of his community in particular and mankind in general; District Overseer of NE/DE District of KECCM (Koinonia Ecumenical Council of Churches and Ministries) under the leadership of Bishop Leroy Woodard.
He is a dynamic leader, and riveting orator, whose preached word has caused many who were lost to find their way. His life has given us timeless lessons of tenacity and perseverance for those who will follow in his footsteps for generations to come.