By Arthia Nixon
Family Island music promoter Jamie ‘DJ Crunktified’ Isaacs has officially been named senior pastor of the church founded by his mother, the respected evangelist and prophetess Pastor Arlene Isaacs.
With his mother passing away in 2012, Isaacs says he is proud to carry the torch for the late gospel icon by leading the congregation of Living By Faith Free In Jesus in James Cistern, Eleuthera. Isaacs is already focused on taking the ministry to new heights. The church recently celebrated a step in the international direction by being placed under the covering of Apostle Ricardo McQueen’s Mt Caramel Temple of Refuge in Orlando, Florida.
“My mother prepared me for this since I was young,” said Isaacs, whose childhood memories include tagging along with his mother on her pastoral invitations and street meetings.
“In the past three years she was pushing us to get more involved in ministry because she said she was going back into the mission field. I finally relented and agreed to be named youth minister, then later assistant pastor. It wasn’t until she passed away that I realized her mission was actually moving on to her heavenly home and she simply wanted to make sure we were ready to take the helm.”
Coupled with his mother’s prophecies and training, Isaac feels his love of music helped prepare him reach what he has been told is a “seemingly unreachable” generation. As DJ Crunktified, he has worked with some of the nation’s top gospel acts, helping promote their events and concerts on Eleuthera.
As a son of Eleuthera’s highly respected female ministers, Isaacs says he knows he has large shoes to fill, but he is more focused on the vision and mission that God has given him as opposed to being a carbon copy of his mother.
“My mother was known to host street meetings,” Isaacs said. “Instead of doing it the way she did, I was led to do it differently in order to minster to my generation. We do have a building, but I am not going to confine Christ to four walls.”
With the help of Governor’s Harbor rappers C-Dash and Iceberg and other youth gospel leaders, Issacs has taken on a new approach to evangelism that has been working, especially when the numbers of young men who have committed their lives to Christ through the ministry are added up. In fact, the church’s new assistant pastor Jonathon Roberts is just 26 years-old. Issacs is in his mid-30’s.
Issacs credits his wife Tressica for making the transition smooth. Despite working at her bustling nail salon and mothering their three young children, including a newborn, he says he is grateful she still prioritizes time for conducting the praise and worship team and joins him in their popular marriage ambassadors couples support group. Their first conference was a major success, bringing Apostle Raymond Wells and his wife Olivia of Living Waters Kingdom Ministries in New Providence to the island.
“The whole thing is bittersweet,” admits Isaacs whose pastoral duties will be taking him to Orlando for an ordination soon.
“A part of me wishes mummy were here to see that we are handling it and enjoying it. We are going to honour her legacy in the New Year because she was given the original vision. I am just blessed to know that even as a child, by simply tagging along on her skirt tails, I was able to get a lot of training and exposure for what I am now doing. That’s the reason I know I am obligated to continue my mother’s work by doing my father’s business.”