"Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come." - 2 Corinthians 5:17

jesus is the answer

Remembering Our Pastor, Charles Sharpe 

It is with sad hearts that we say goodbye to our founder and pastor, Charlie Sharpe, who entered Heaven this week. But we do not grieve without hope, for to be absent from the body is to be present with the Lord. Our continued prayers for his wife Laurie, and their extended family. We are grateful for the outpourings of love and prayer from all around the world. 

Charles N. Sharpe, Jr., age 89, went home to be with the Lord on February 1, 2017 at 12:01 a.m. Mr. Sharpe died at his residence in Bethel, Missouri. Mr. Sharpe had suffered from declining health due to cardiac and renal issues.

Mr. Sharpe held many titles throughout his life including Pastor, President and Founder of Ozark National Life Insurance Company, Marine, salesman, farmer, mentor and friend. But the accolade he most desired to hear was heard early this morning from his Lord, “Well done, good and faithful servant.”

Born June 17, 1927, Mr. Sharpe was the son of Charles Norval Sharpe, Sr. and Lois Atha Byers Sharpe, of Bethel, Missouri. As Pastor of Heartland Community Church and Founder of CNS International Ministries, Pastor Sharpe is remembered by thousands of men, women and children for his passion to help them get free from life-controlling behaviors through the Gospel. Starting with his family’s original 600-acre homestead near La Belle, Missouri, he expanded into an 18,000 acre farm spanning three northeast Missouri counties, largely to provide work for people in the recovery programs. Mr. Sharpe was Chancellor of Heartland Christian College.

These ministries were assisted in large part by Pastor Sharpe’s business acumen and ownership of Ozark National Life Insurance Company. Ozark National Life was founded by Mr. Sharpe in 1964 and remained his pride and joy throughout his life, and many of his closest friendships and deepest loyalties were forged there.

Mr. Sharpe was preceded in death by his parents, his first wife, Wanda Fern Walker Sharpe, and his son, Charles Rodney Sharpe. He is survived by his wife, Laurie J. Emerson Sharpe, a tireless supporter of the work and vision of Ozark National Life Insurance Company, CNS International Ministries, and Heartland Community Church where she has served alongside her husband for 27 years. He is also survived by his daughters, Linda Patchin and her spouse Robert and Carol Boone and her spouse Willard, and many grandchildren and great grandchildren.

To borrow a passage from Scripture, these are the days of the years of Charles N. Sharpe, Jr. He breathed his last and died in a good old age, an old man and full of years, and was gathered to his people.

  • Visitation will be held on Saturday, February 4, 2017 from 4:00 p.m. until 8:00 p.m. at the Heartland Community Church. The Church meets at 101 Nations Boulevard, Bethel, Missouri (in the Heartland Christian Academy auditorium). The main entrance is located on the west side of the building nearest the three flag poles. Parking is available on the north side of the building, with another entrance and gravel parking lot on the east side of the building.
  • The funeral service will be held on Sunday, February 5, beginning at 9:00 a.m. at the same location. A graveside committal service will follow for immediate family only. 

The family requests that, in lieu of flowers, contributions be made to: CNS International Ministries, 6417 Shelby CR 150, Suite A, Bethel, MO 63434

watch online


Heartland Community Church will be streaming Pastor Charlie's funeral online at on Sunday, February 5, at 9:00am. 

Or visit our Facebook page to view it via Facebook Live.

Further Reading

Browse through our websites below for more testimonies of God at work in lives, plus TV sermons and worship, upcoming events, and what's new throughout the entire Heartland community.

Straight from the Heart
Our weekly television program, also available for viewing online.

The Heartland Community
Have you visited us lately? Join us for church, or drop in during the week.

Heartland Recovery Programs
A place of hope for men and women who want to break a cycle of addiction.

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Each month we hope to bring you another story of a life changed through the power of Jesus Christ. And if we can pray for you or help in any way, please don't hesitate to give us a call. Phone 660-284-6212.

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COME AND VISIT: Church services are held Sunday morning and evening, and Wednesday night. Click here for directions to our community.
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Heartland Community · 6417 Shelby 150, Suite A · Bethel, Mo 63434 · USA

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