Daily Archives: December 24th, 2012

Homegoing of a Saint: Rev. Michael C. Burton, Des Moines, Iowa (Update)

by Robert Earl Houston


Corinthian Family,

The following are the services for our Beloved Pastor Burton,
Wednesday, January 2, 2013 Pastor will lie in state from 10 am to 6:30 pm at Corinthian Baptist Church.

A special Tribute Service will be held from 6:30 pm to 8 pm.

Thursday, January 3, 2013 Viewing will be held from 10 am to 11 am at Corinthian Baptist Church.
Homegoing Services will be at 11 am.

During this season we must “Trust in the LORD with all our heart; and do not depend on our own understanding, Seek his will in all we do, and he will show us which path to take” Proverbs 3: 5-6.

Continue to keep Rev. Burton and families, and the Corinthian Family in your prayers.

Rev. Michael C. Burton, Senior Pastor of Corinthian Baptist Church, Des Moines, Iowa went home to be with the Lord today, December 24, 2012.  Below is the bio from his church’s website. We extend our condolences to his wife, family, church members and friends. Rev. Burton and I have been friends for several years and we used to tease each other about how we favored each other. I pray that God will be with his family during this transition:

Michael C. Burton is the Senior Pastor of the Corinthian Baptist Church in Des Moines, Iowa. He has attended Trenton State College, William Paterson University and holds a BA in Sociology, a BA in History and a Masters of Divinity Degree from Andersonville Theological Seminary. Rev. Burton is currently pursuing a Doctorate of Ministry from Liberty Theological Seminary in Lynchburg, VA. Rev. Burton is a Ford Fellowship Foundation scholar receiving this honor not only in 1995 but again in 1997.

Rev. Michael Burton was licensed into the Gospel Ministry in June of 1997 by the Rev. Dr. Albert P. Rowe of the Calvary Baptist Church in Paterson, New Jersey. Rev. Burton served as Associate Minister and Youth Pastor at the Calvary Baptist Church. Rev. Burton then served as the Asst. Pastor of the Shiloh Baptist Church in Paterson, New Jersey where the Rev. Dr. Alfred Blakely is the Pastor.

In 2000 Rev. Michael C. Burton was called to Pastor the people of the Lebanon Baptist Church in Westwood, New Jersey. In 2003 Rev. Burton was blessed to become the first full time Pastor in the history of the Lebanon Baptist Church. Under his leadership the church, increased numerically, spiritually and financially. Membership more than tripled and the operating budget more than quadrupled. Most importantly however, members grew spiritually in their relationship with the Lord. In 2007 Rev. Burton led the church to build a Community Technology Center that was completed in 2009 debt free.

In 2010 Rev. Burton was blessed to be called as the Senior Pastor of the Corinthian Baptist Church in Des Moines, Iowa. Rev. Burton looks forward to a productive and fruitful ministry as Pastor and People work together to make an impact on their community as we build the kingdom of God together.

Rev. Burton has been blessed in several arenas, having served for 5 years as the Deputy Surrogate of Passaic County, the first African American to serve in such a position in the history of the State of New Jersey. Rev. Burton has also served as the Director of Public Relations for Assemblyman Alfred E. Steele of the 35th Legislative District. Rev. Burton is also active in civic and community affairs and has served on the Board of Directors of the Paterson NAACP, Imani Institute of Positive Education, Governor’s Commission on Youth Violence and Drug Prevention, Political Action Chairman of the Paterson Pastor’s Workshop, and Vice President of the Board of Directors for the Farleigh Dickinson University EOF Program.

Denominationally Rev. Michael C. Burton is also active, serving as the President of The Westwood Clergy Council, Treasurer of the Fellowship of Black Churches of Hackensack & Vicinity and 2nd Vice Moderator of the Shiloh Baptist Association of NJ. Rev. Burton is also a feature writer for the National Baptist Voice, the official magazine of the National Baptist Convention USA Inc.

Rev. Burton has received numerous awards including the 1996 100 Black Men’s Adam Clayton Powell Award for Leadership, 1997 Passaic County 4C’s Award for Civic Commitment and 1998 Forerunners Association Man of the Year Award. In January 2000 Rev. Michael C. Burton was awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Religious Studies from the University of Nebraska in Lincoln, NE. Rev. Burton is also the published author of “Deep Roots: The African Black Contribution to Christianity and “Prayer: the Sixth Purpose of the Church.”

Rev. Burton is happily married to the former Yolanda Matthews and is the father of Jawon Matthews. Rev. Michael Burton counts none of his accomplishments to himself but acknowledges that all things have come by the grace of God. Rev. Burton is committed to the spreading of the Gospel of Jesus Christ and to seeing the Good News of the Gospel put into action as lives are changed, and hearts are mended. Rev. Burton’s life Scripture is Psalms 34:1 “I will bless the Lord at all times; His praise shall continuously be in my mouth.”

From the Des Moines Register:

A central Des Moines pastor who during his brief tenure helped launch a workforce training initiative and saw attendance blossom at his church has died.

The Rev. Michael C. Burton, 41, of Corinthian Baptist Church died Monday evening at a Des Moines hospital. Henderson’s Highland Park Funeral Home is handling arrangements. The cause of death was not available Wednesday.

Corinthian church deacon Robert Craddock said Burton was an accomplished public speaker with a message that attracted the community during the past 21/2years.

“He was a loving man,” Craddock said. “Our church increased from 200 to 800 members in his short time here. People just gravitated to him. He had a loving spirit and they just loved him.”

Burton became senior pastor at the church in May 2010. He had moved to Des Moines earlier that spring.

“The word gets out and they just came,” Craddock said. “We’d open up the church and people would just run up. He brought relevant issues to the pulpit and talked about life.”

Survivors include his wife, Yolanda, also a pastor at the church, and son Jawon Matthews.

Burton was born in 1971 in Paterson, N.J. He held bachelor’s degrees in sociology and history and a master’s degree in divinity from Andersonville Theological Seminary in Camilla, Ga. He served as pastor at Lebanon Baptist Church in Westwood, N.J., for 10 years before moving to Des Moines, Corinthian’s website says.

The Rev. Benjamin Bell Jr. of Present Truth Ministries International served on the board with Burton at Project IOWA: Iowa Opportunities for Workforce Advancement, a workforce initiative that provides skills training to help people achieve livable wages.

“He’s done so many things in such a short time, and it’s a great loss for us and the community and the city,” Bell said.

Burton was a founding member of Project IOWA, which is part of the community group A Mid-Iowa Organizing Strategy. Bell said the organization has trained about 50 people to date, with 43 now holding good jobs. Bell said Burton was instrumental in the initiative’s success, even meeting with Gov. Terry Branstad to help secure a $100,000 commitment from the state for the organization.

Bell said the organization has started training people in health sciences and advanced manufacturing in the past year.

“He wanted to be a real presence, to build some deep and organic relationships with people, so the people would be transformed into individuals that would help their community,” Bell said. “He is going to be truly missed.”

Visitation is planned Wednesday from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. at Corinthian Baptist Church, 814 School St., with a tribute service in the evening. The funeral will be Jan. 3 at Corinthian at 11 a.m.


by Pastor Robert Earl Houston

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