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Rev. James L. Kilgore

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Rev.  James L. Kilgore Obituary
Rev. James L. Kilgore, fought a good fight, kept the faith, and finished this life on February 5, 2014. Pastor Kilgore was born on September 23, 1926 in Corning, AR. He is preceded in death by his spouse, Imogene Ellen Ritchie Kilgore, his parents, Rev. C.P. and Ella Kilgore, eight of his ten siblings, and his son-in-law, Rev. Daniel E. Calk. He is survived by daughters, Jan Madden and husband Rod; Jean Carlen and husband Mike; and Son, James Kilgore II and wife Nancy. Grandchildren; Christopher and Misty, and Danielle Calk. James Michael, Alexander and Hilary, and Joy Carlen. James (Bo) Kilgore III and Heather, Benjamin, and JoElla Lace Kilgore. Five Great-Grandchildren, Daniel, Evan and Liam Calk, Windsor Carlen, and Scarlett Kilgore.
One sister, Omeda Nichols. A host of nieces and nephews, Kilgore and Ritchie family members. The children of Rod Madden, Greg & Kristi Graham and Todd & Beth Madden and family. Rev. Kilgore entered the ministry at the age of eighteen. After a six-week, whirlwind courtship with the love of his life, James and Ima were married in Sherman, TX on September 12, 1950. They assumed the pastorate of the United Pentecostal Church in Paris, TX immediately following their honeymoon. In 1957, James and Ima Kilgore were called to be the pastor of Life Tabernacle located at the corner of Market & Rouse streets in Houston, TX. Under their dynamic leadership, the church experienced extraordinary growth, leading the congregation to 2950 Broadway and then to 9900 Almeda Genoa. Their dream of a ministry that spread the love of Christ to all was realized through bus ministry, teaching bible studies, Life Christian Academy, establishing churches throughout the Houston area and around the world through foreign missions. Pastor Kilgore loved foreign missions. In the last few years of ministry, his focus was on helping local Spanish churches and the Philippine Islands. He helped establish several Bible schools throughout the world including the Philippines, Africa, Asia and Central America and his son, Pastor Jim carries on this passion having established an orphanage, Ima's Home for Children in Angeles City, Philippines. Together, James and Ima traveled to many countries, teaching and ministering and establishing churches, schools and preaching points. He served as Pastor and Bishop of Life Tabernacle in Houston for over 57 years. He loved God's church and his church family with great joy. He also served as Assistant General Superintendent for the United Pentecostal Church International and District Superintendent of Texas for over 30 years. Time and eternity only will reveal the lives he touched and with whom he shared God's great love. From his local Starbuck's on Rowlett to large crowds, he was always the same, loving, caring and concerned for everyone. He truly leaves this world a better place with many souls added to God's kingdom. To God Be The Glory! His Grandsons will serve as Pallbearers. In lieu of flowers, please make a donation to Ima's Home for Children at www.life.cc, Online Giving or mail a check to the church address made out to Life Church and designate it for Ima's Home. Visitations will take place at Life Church, 9900 Almeda Genoa in Houston TX on Friday Feb. 7 from 6-8pm.and on Saturday Feb. 8 from 9-10 Saturday with a funeral service to begin promptly at 10 am. Interment will follow at Forest Park Lawdale Cemetery.


Published in Houston Chronicle on Feb. 7, 2014
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