IN-PERSON LEARNING RETURNS, MONDAY, APRIL 12.
Greater Holy Temple Christian Academy (GHTCA) was the dream of the late Elder Joseph Robert DeShazer, Jr., who was the brother of our ultimate Founder, Chief Executive Officer and Chief Financial Officer, the late Pastor James DeShazer. Elder Joseph DeShazer, Jr. was the Pastor and Founder of Greater Holy Temple Church of God in Christ and the First Administrative Assistant and President of the State Evangelist Department of the 3rd Ecclesiastical Jurisdiction of the Church of God in Christ. He was a graduate of Marquette University and Rhema Bible Institute, which demonstrates that education was important for his success.
Elder DeShazer was truly a spiritual giant, a “Man of God” and prophet of the Lord. He was a great man of faith and wisdom. Elder DeShazer had faith in his own abilities and faith in prayer. He always had dreams and goals which gave him hope. He had a strong love for children, which was the ultimate reason for the establishment of GHTCA and is the reason for the school’s vision. Elder DeShazer believed that faith, honor and respect are the key ingredients in the recipe for success.
After the death of Elder Joseph DeShazer, Pastor James Deshazer, the subsequent Pastor of Greater Holy Temple Church of God in Christ, had a dream which encouraged him to bring his brother’s vision to life. Greater Holy Temple Christian Academy, founded in 2002, opened its doors in September 2003, with the blessing of God, serving 57 children. It had its first 8th grade graduating class in May 2007.
GHTCA’s student population rapidly grew. Under the awesome leadership, faithfulness and spiritual mentoring of Pastor James DeShazer, Greater Holy Temple Christian Academy was educating more than 700 students in the Milwaukee area for numerous years. He possessed and demonstrated a strong love for children and was committed to the families of Milwaukee. Today, GHTCA educates approximately 600 students, allowing faculty and staff the ability to focus on each of their various special needs. With much sadness, in June 2020, the DeShazer and GHTCA family experienced a devastating loss with the passing of Pastor James DeShazer.
The GHTCA and DeShazer legacy now continues under the leadership of Mr. Edward DeShazer, the son of Pastor James DeShazer. He is the current Executive Director/CEO/CFO. Mr. DeShazer is carrying forth the mission and vision established by his uncle and father, but incorporating his own vision and expectation for GHTCA as we move forward in the 21st century. A School Improvement Team was established under his leadership. The goal and focus of the team are to identify and meet all the needs of the students so they can academically progress. He also became trained in Restorative Practices which he presented to the faculty and staff throughout the 2019 – 2020 school year. GHTCA knows it will have a continued bright future under his leadership and dedication.
Greater Holy Temple Christian Academy, an outreach of Greater Holy Temple Church of God in Christ, a non-denominational Christian educational institution, opened its doors at 4240 North Green Bay Road and expanded to the adjacent church (occupying two buildings). Ultimately, in the summer of August 2006, it was blessed to occupy one of Milwaukee Public School’s vacant buildings at 5575 North 76th Street where the enrollment continues at its capacity. The relationship with MPS has been very beneficial for both parties; however, the ultimate desire has been for Greater Holy Temple Christian Academy to purchase and expand the facility. If this does not occur, the Executive Director and GHTCA Board of Directors are looking at other facility options for the upcoming school term.
The mission of Greater Holy Temple Christian Academy is to serve a diverse population in the urban community of Milwaukee and providing its students with a quality, supportive learning environment rooted on a firm Christian foundation of morals and values. Its goal is to inspire all students to strive for excellence in order to succeed in and contribute to the community…locally, nationally and globally.
The student body at GHTCA reflects the diversity within its community. Current demographics indicate that approximately 96% of the student enrollment is African American and 4% is other…including Bi-racial, Hispanic and Caucasian. Even though our students reside throughout the City of Milwaukee, they live in zip codes that have the highest number of low-income families. Greater Holy Temple Christian Academy is currently 100% free lunch as we participate in the Community Eligibility Program (CEP). During our current COVID period while students were learning virtually, the GHTCA/USDA Food Service Program continued where families could pick up food each week for a seven-day period for anyone in their home 18 years or younger. This option was well received by our families.
We thank Elder Joseph DeShazer, Jr. for his dream of Greater Holy Temple Christian Academy and Pastor James DeShazer for making his dream come true! We further thank Mr. Edward DeShazer for taking the helm and charging forward as our new future of Greater Holy Temple Christian Academy.