Vanzelen G. Brown, Sr. was born in Nassau, Bahamas where he was later baptized in St. Paul Baptist Church. Pastor Brown was raised in a family of Baptist ministers, including two brothers, uncles, and cousins who were all ministers of other faiths.
In 1979, Pastor Brown left the Bahamas to attend Evangel University in Springfield, Missouri with the words of his mother lodged permanently in his mind: “Son go with God and God will go with you.” After two years at Evangel, Pastor Brown graduated with an associate degree in Christian Education. Pastor Brown then moved to Tulsa, Oklahoma where he would complete his bachelor’s degree and Master of Business degree from Oklahoma Wesleyan University in Bartlesville.
Pastor Brown is the former pastor of Greater Shiloh Missionary Baptist Church in Muskogee, Oklahoma (1985 – 2017). Before retiring, Pastor accomplished the following:
- Paid off the Church $35,000 mortgage in his first year as Pastor.
- Paved the Church parking lot.
- Purchased four additional properties adjacent to the Church and behind the Church.
- Purchased two new Church Vans.
- Remodeled the Church sanctuary.
- Built an educational wing and offices adjacent to the Church.
- Paid off ten different loans ahead of schedule.
- Founded God’s Desire Learning Center from 1994 – 2016.
As Founder and Executive Director of GDLC, Pastor accomplished the following:
- Built an 8,000 Sq foot Daycare facility
- Increased Daycare enrollment to over 125 children
- Increased Daycare income from $40,000 per year to over $550,000 annually
- Increase Daycare staff from 3 employees to over 25
Pastor Brown worked for the Oklahoma Department of Human Services from 1995 until 2005. After retiring from DHS, Pastor Brown returned to full-time ministry at the Church and Learning Center.
In 2014, Pastor was offered a position as Adjunct Instructor at Bacone College in Muskogee, Oklahoma where he presently teaches.
In September of 2017, Pastor Brown became the 10th Pastor of his home church, Greater Union Baptist Church. Pastor Brown was licensed and ordained by his father in the ministry, Dr. S. M. Harnsberry – the former Pastor and builder of the present Church.
Pastor Brown started his pastorate at GUBC with the theme: Serving God With Love, Unity, Respect, Integrity, Transparency, Accountability and Purpose. Pastor Brown has launched a short- and long-term vision for GUBC with the belief that with much prayer, work, sacrificial giving, and faith in the Lord all things are possible.