Bishop I.V. Hilliard
Ira V. Hilliard, a native Houstonian, was called at the age of nine to preach God’s Word. Having waited one year so that his pastor would know he heard from God, Ira Hilliard preached his first sermon on a Mother’s Day night at the age of ten. He married the beautiful Bridget E. Harrison on October 4, 1975, who has co-labored with him in building a dynamic ministry that is recognized around the world.
This dynamic couple co-founded the outstanding New Light Christian Center Church (“One Church, Multiple locations”) in North, East, West, and South Houston; Beaumont and Austin, Texas. The Austin location was sowed into the onsite pastor and the name was changed in December 2016. The East location was remodeled into L.O.V.E. City USA in the summer of 2017; it is the only urban Christian campground of its kind in the country. The West location property was sold in February 2018; the members were merged into the north and south campuses.
Their passion to take God’s Word to a hurting and lost generation has resulted in a current church membership of over 20,000 and counting. New Light Christian Center Church is not only recognized around the country as a Mega-Church but in September 2007 it was honored as one of the Top 50 Most Influential Churches in America.
This Mega-Church also has a nationwide television ministry, a satellite network, an Aviation Division, Light Commerce Credit Union and an early childhood development center known as Light Christian Academy.
In 1995, after a mandate from God many years prior, Apostle Hilliard started Church Development Strategies Conference. Thousands of Pastors and leaders come to Houston annually to sit at his feet to learn church strategies, growth and development principles. The conference, now branded as Strategies Conference, is recognized as one of the best conferences of its kind in the country.
After a strong witness from God in 2001, Apostle Hilliard developed an organization of Pastors who either see him as a spiritual father or mentor. This organization is called the Association of Independent Ministries (A.I.M.). A.I.M. currently has 1,000 Pastors and is growing monthly. A Pastor to Pastors and a man after God’s heart, Apostle Hilliard was confirmed as a Bishop in the Lord’s Church in February 2007.
Apostle I.V. Hilliard is an accomplished songwriter and has been recognized for various scholarly honors. He is the author of several life-changing and thought provoking books. His book “The Cup, The Cake and The Coin,” released in February 2012 has received a phenomenal response.
His other writings include “Maximizing Life’s Defining Moments” released in October 2010. Apostle Hilliard released two books in October 2009 entitled “The Maximized Life Journey-52 Days to Victorious Living;” and “Experiencing The Fresh Fire Anointing-The Textbook For The Spirit Filled Life.” In July 2008, “Men At Work” was released from Harrison House Publishers. He also accepted an opportunity to write for Nelson Publishers after being approached by them, resulting in the release of “Living The Maximized Life.” Other significant and noteworthy books include but are not limited to “Mental Toughness For Success;” “Secrets For A Better Life;” and “Victory Over Stress- 10 Mistakes Most Failures Make And How To Avoid Them.” In 2015 after a witness from the Holy Spirit Apostle Hilliard developed The Reimagine Matrix, in 2016 The Think Matrix and 2017 The Grace Matrix. These matrix have been taught worldwide through the faith tours resulting in Apostle Hilliard teaching 40 faith tours in 2016, 29 faith tours in 2017, and 46 planned tours in 2018.
In January 2018 after 10 years of mentoring his daughter, Apostle Hilliard appointed his successor Dr. Irishea Hilliard as the Sr. Pastor of New Light Church. After 33 years of founding and pastoring New Light Church Apostle Hilliard and Pastor Bridget Hilliard have now fully embraced the Evangelical division of New Light.
Sharing over 90 part-time and full-time employees to assist the church and Evangelical division, Apostle Hilliard is committed to creating and cultivating an authentic church experience that glorifies God and exceeds all expectations. His unwavering compassion for people along with his faithfulness to build into God’s people, PURPOSE, POWER, and PRAISE will continue yielding great results in the Kingdom of God.
The Hilliard’s have committed to the parental oversight of three lovely daughters: Tina Hilliard-Egans, husband – Terry Egans; Irishea Hilliard; and Preashea Hilliard. The Hilliard’s are also very proud to have four grandchildren: Ira Emanuel, Briona Janae, Ivan Harrison and Jonathan Sean-Michael. All the children and grandchildren have been marked for ministry with all the adult children currently working in full-time ministry with their parents.