Jacksonville, FL (May 15, 2019) – In recognition of his 41 years as the founding Pastor of Crossroads United Methodist Church, the Jacksonville City Council passed resolution 2018-635 unanimously back in September to honor Pastor Gee Sprague and to congratulate him on his recent retirement.
“This was a special honor to have this opportunity to recognize, Pastor Gee Sprague,” said Councilman Becton. “Pastor Gee, as everyone calls him, has been a friend and spiritual leader in my family’s life for almost 30 years, which spans from the Lakewood United Methodist Church to the beginnings of Crossroads, where the church originated in a warehouse off of Baymeadows Road in the 90’s, to a congregation within the beautiful and inspiring facility near the Town Center.”
Pastor Gee Sprague is a West Palm Beach Florida native who graduated from Boone High School in Orlando and went on to receive his college diploma from Florida Southern College in 1975. Five years later, Pastor Gee graduated Cum Laude from the Candler School of Theology, Emory University in 1980. He and his wife Sandy have been married 39 years and are the proud parents of daughter, Hannah Elizabeth.
Pastor Gee was an inspiring spiritual leader having spent his life and career with evangelism and devotion to the United Methodist Church “UMC”. His career included being a member of the Florida Annual Conference of the UMC since 1978; was an Associate at the Evangelist Trinity Foundation from 1980 to 1985; was Associate Pastor at Lakewood United Methodist Church from 1981 to 1995; and was President of Cross and Crown Ministries from 1985 to 2000, where he and his wife Sandy, ministered to youth and youth adults.
Pastor Gee’s legacy and crowning achievement was the founding of Crossroad United Methodist Church in Jacksonville, Florida at 10005 Gate Parkway. Crossroads was an inspiration of Pastor Gee’s that offers an innovative, contemporary approach to worship with contemporary praise and worship music to provide an experience that offers a come as you are; non-traditional experience to worship.
The resolution was passed in the beginning of the Council term on September 25, 2018, but due to scheduling, the ceremony to honor him had to wait till May 15, 2019. It was a great evening as so many family and friends joined for the full Council meeting where Councilman Becton acknowledged this event and shared the following:
First, I would like to say “Thank you” to my fellow Council Members, having passed Resolution 2018-635 on September 25, 2018, last year.
It’s an honor to stand before you this evening to celebrate the retirement of Pastor Gee Sprague after a ministry of service for 41 years. This is a special evening for my wife Linda and I, having moved to Jacksonville, we found our first church home within the United Methodist Church at Lakewood United Methodist on San Jose (where we were married in 1992).
This is where we first meet Pastor Gee Sprague as the Associate Pastor.
One of Gee’s biggest accomplishments is the founding of a new ministry in 1995 today known as Crossroads United Methodist Church at 10005 Gate Parkway N.
Gee was a visionary. Back in 1995, Gee began this new ministry of Crossroads in a small warehouse off Baymeadows Road, between US1 and I-95. This ministry was ahead of its time in that it transformed the traditional services of organs, formal chorus, suit and ties to a conservative environment of prayer that inspired people to come as they are, to worship in a musical atmosphere that certainly was designed to inspire and be more familiar with a broader congregation. The theme for Crossroads became: “IMPERFECT? YOU’LL FIT RIGHT IN.”
The Church today stands within a 60,000 sq. ft. facility built in 2003 that sits at the forefront of the Town Center. This again showed the vision that Gee and the church leadership had which placed its location in what has turned out to be a very popular area. Its design was one that certainly inspired and appeal to a broader range of members.”
Pastor Gee has definitely put his stamp on many lives in our Jacksonville community for which this resolution recognizes, his ministry that will be felt by so many, for many years to come. It is for these accomplishments and more that we recognize Pastor Gee Sprague, founding Pastor of Crossroads United Methodist Church and congratulate him and wish him well in retirement.
Tonight, as you can see, Gee is surround by many of those that his life impacted. Please allow me to take a moment to allow a couple of them to speak, sharing their thoughts and appreciation.
Those speaking on behalf of Pastor Gee include: Pastor George Spencer, Associate Pastor of Crossroad United Methodist Church, and Mr. Jim Young, a long-time friend and church leader.
“This evening of appreciation and reflection for Pastor Gee was perfect,” stated Councilman Becton. “It’s always such an awarding experience to have the opportunity to honor a community leader for their dedication and achievements and for inspiring so many.”
Check out Photos of the Event in the Photo Gallery
By Tiziana Onstead, District 11 Executive Council Assistant
Posted on Wed, May 15, 2019
by Tizana Onstead