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Monthly Archives: April, 2014

Unexcited in an Exciting Time

10273116_10152039688617045_1785484556658416024_oby Robert Earl Houston

Why aren’t I excited?

In the history of African-American baptists this is the closest thing to a Super Bowl – the changing of the guard in all four major conventions within a short period of time.

This year, there are contested elections in the National Baptist Convention, USA, Inc. and the National Baptist Convention of America, Inc. International. Progressive National Baptist Convention, Inc. will be electing a new chieftain, apparently without any opposition. And the National Missionary Baptist Convention of America will soon begin their process of elections within the next few months.

I should be giddy; I should be interested and involved; I should be watching with great interest.

So, why aren’t I excited?

I’ve come to the conclusion that the paradigm of our National Conventions are in great need of prayerful examination. Little has changed since the historic NBC/NBCA split of 1915. Basically the same structures are in place: There are women missionary unions (which are dying all over the country in favor of “women ministries” or localized names for ministries for the women); Most churches have some type of men’s work, but on a national level, it’s dying. Oddly, the largest auxiliaries in most of our churches, music ministry, are largely ignored in most of the conventions.

In most of the conventions, the Presidency is held by, what I believe, are godly men who love the Lord. However, they are shepherding conventions that are not stuck because of the infusion of new leadership, they are stuck because the constituency is just not there.

Let’s look at it. In order to be a participating member, the average convention will ask for at least $1,000 of annual representation. However, to get to the convention, with airfare ridiculously high and hotels that are making major profits for a room that, if you go to the convention to be active as a delegate you won’t spend more than 8 hours in the room. If the room is $200 per night, that means you are paying $25 per hour to stay in that said room (8 hours) – or consider it like this – you are paying the hotelier $8.50 per hour NOT to stay in your room.

Airfares are ridiculously high. All of the national conventions are losing members in the Western United States because of the $500-$800 round trip airfare to fly from Los Angeles, San Diego, Seattle, Portland, Oakland, Sacramento, Fresno, Bakersfield, Orange County, etc. to go to the Midwest and Southern United States where most of our national meetings are held.

Many pastors struggle with asking a congregation to send them to the convention under these uncertain financial times.  In this age of technology, is there really a need for a “Board Meeting?”  In these times, is it really necessary to conduct business like we’re stuck in 1915. Why do we need a board of over 50 people to decide the work of a convention? Why is it that when you come to a convention you’ll hear either preachers who are not affiliated with your convention (which means there is a loss of support) or it’s the same one or two preachers who preach every year?

I told a joke once about a Board Meeting where a national president was presiding to make out a program. He said, “XYZ, do you want to preach?” the minister responded: “Yes sir, brother president.” “ABC, do you want to preach?” the minister responded: “Yes sir, brother president.” “DEF, do you want to preach?” the minister responded: “Yes sir, brother president.” “All right, we have made out our program, the Lord is pleased.”

I’m not sure.

What has happened to our conventions? I think we need to look at a few things:

a.  Conferences are killing the conventions. Whether it’s a preaching conference or a family conference (i.e., MegaFest) – they are now being populated by the same folk that used to go to National Baptist Conventions. I went to the Pastors’ Conference sponsored by Bishop T.D. Jakes, and I ran into so many PNBC, NMBCA, NBCA, and NBCUSA pastors, that I’ve served with for years. The same is to be said of the preaching conferences that EQUIP pastors to do their most vital task – preach the word.

b.  Conventions are no longer THE PLACE to hear great, challenging preaching. Before the advent of YouTube, you HAD TO go to the Conventions to hear the best in black preaching. Very few ministers were on or could afford national TV exposure in that day – so if you wanted to hear Caeser A.W. Clark, E.K. Bailey, E. Edward Jones, Stephen Thurston, Melvin Wade, P.S. Wilkerson, John H. Jackson, Gardner Taylor, and others – you had to go to the Conventions. But now, I can hear Freddie Haynes in the privacy of my church office. I can hear Paul Sylvester Morton while I’m flying on an airplane. I can hear Charles Booth via CD or DVD. Our greatest preachers are not being heard when you come to the Convention. Why is that???

c.  Conventions are burning out those who support it. I’ve been in conventions since my pastor, the late Dr. A. Bernard Devers, MADE ME go to the Convention and I went to NBCA meetings in Denver and San Francisco. I’ve had the privilege of working on the staff of several national presidents and conventions. Even on a conference or two. But you begin to notice something: the workers aren’t coming back.  When I grew up in NBCA, the Secretaries served for 20, 30, 40 years. The staff rarely, if ever, changed. Younger pastors manned the Secretary tables or were brought along and mentored in areas of the convention that interested them. But now, there is such a change because new presidents supply new staffers – and the old staffers stay home.

d.  This is going to be painful – but we don’t need all of these Conventions and Congresses. We really don’t. We have, as of this writing, four major Black African-American Baptist Conventions, not counting those who are in Full Gospel Baptist Church Fellowship, the Global United Fellowship, Free Will Baptists, etc. We are stretched way too thin. By the time you have a District Association and Congress/Institute, a State Convention and Congress/Institute, a Regional Convention and Congress/Institute, a National Convention and Congress/Institute – you have financially tapped out your resources by giving to EIGHT DIFFERENT GROUPS. Most churches are cutting back or eliminating their participation not because they don’t recognize the historical significance of the convention, but literally the toll financially is too high.

e.  The Presidential elections are depressing instead of exciting. I was from an era when Presidents rarely changed. It provided stability. However, there is, in my opinion, a spirit of rebellion that has permeated our elections. If Candidate A wins, Candidate B and all of his people stop supporting. It’s like winning a boxing match, but you lose some of your teeth and your eye. You can still function, but not look you could have. The personal attacks on leaders is so out of bounds. Run for the office, not trying to kill the person in office with slander and innuendo. This era of suggestion, innuendo . . . The Tea Party could be given a run for it’s money by how we conduct elections. Someone once said it takes about $100,000.00 to run for President of a convention. I don’t mind an election, as long as we remember that we’re brothers and sisters from the same cloth.

So what can be done to engender my enthusiasm or the enthusiasm of those like me? I’m not sure. But in economic times like these, some consolidation should be on the table. The world will not end if a Board Meeting were cancelled. The world would not end if two conventions could reunite (my personal plea for this would be the National Baptist Convention of America and National Missionary Baptist Convention). The world will not end if we pooled our resources for a named objective (i.e., Resurrection of Bishop College). The world will not end if we could look at the dias and see Vice Presidents or Presidents under 60 years old or General Secretaries in their 30s and 40s. The world will not end if we took advantage of the rapidly changing technologies and instead of going to the convention, let the convention come to you.

The world will not end if all of the conventions gave directly to Lott Carey and let that group manage our monies for missions. The world will not end if a Board of Directors were only 7 people strong instead of 100 people weak. The world will not end if the Pastor’s Conference went from preaching at me to teaching me techniques of how to preach when I get home. The world not end if we stop the parade of vendors who tell trinkets and bring in vendors who sell resources.

The world will not end if the Conventions went regionals and held group meetings every 2 or 4 years nationally. The world will not end if the Convention elected a Chief Operating Officer or some one well versed in Administration to run the conventions between meetings. The world will not end if a Convention made a bold move and held its annual session or board meeting on a cruise ship . The world would not end if it was completely electronic and we dispensed with the lanyards in favor of wrist bands. The world will not end if the President doesn’t speak every year. The world will not end if the Convention reached out to the West Coast and the Northeast Coast, instead of ignoring them. The world will not end if the Convention hired several psychologists and counselors and created a “safe space” for pastors and/or their wives to go for some type of private counseling.

Oh well, I could dream . . .

YOUR COMMENTS ARE WELCOMED

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A Social Media Campaign to honor Dr. A. Louis Patterson

Preachers . . . lend me your ears.

Let’s start a social media campaign to honor the life and legacy of the late Dr. Albert Louis Patterson, Jr., who went home to be with the Lord.

I’m hoping we can get at least 2,000 preachers and laypersons to honor Dr. Patterson, one of the greatest pulpiteer of this generation, by simply placing his photograph as your profile picture on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and other social media outlets, until his homegoing service on Thursday, April 17, 2014.

Below is a picture you can use or use any other photos of Dr. Patterson. We want the nation and world to know that a great (preaching) man of Israel (the Word of God) hath fallen.

+Pastor Robert Earl Houston
Frankfort, Kentucky

ALPatterson

Updated Information for Dr. Albert Louis Patterson, Jr.

***** UPDATED INFORMATION FROM HIS SON, REVEREND ALAN LAMAR PATTERSON (FROM FACEBOOK):

in an effort to accommodate the large crowds on thursday we have extended viewing and added tomorrow wednesday april 16th from 9:00 am until 5 pm! my father, the legendary dr. a. louis patterson jr. will lie in state @ the altar of mount corinth baptist church in houston, texas! in addition, we have secured the auditorium of phillis wheatley high school directly adjacent to the church for services on thursday morning @ 11:00 am April 17th 2014. finally, services will also be streamed worldwide online @ www.faithvideoondemand.com/funeral.htm #JOYFORTHEJOURNEY

GScreen Shot 2014-04-09 at 7.11.02 PMood morning everyone. I spoke with the Mount Corinth Missionary Baptist Church staff and the services are as follows:

April 17, 2014

All services held at
Mount Corinth Missionary Baptist Church
4901 Providence Street
Houston, Texas 77020
(713) 674-5667 – Church Office
(713) 674-9914 – Church Fax

View begins at 8:30 a.m. CST
Seating begins at 10:00 a.m. CST
Services begin at 11:00 a.m. CST

This information may be subject to change by the discretion of the family.

Homegoing of a Saint: Dr. A. Louis Patterson, Jr., Houston, TX

by Robert Earl Houston

The acknowledged “Godfather” of expository preaching among African-American preachers was called home to be with the Lord today, April 9, 2014 – the Reverend Dr. Albert Louis Patterson, Jr., pastor of the Mount Corinth Missionary Baptist Church of Houston, Texas.

I met Dr. Patterson when I was a much younger man when he would preach in Revival in Portland, Oregon. To say Dr. Patterson was one of a kind is a misnomer because generations of preachers have since imitated and emulated their preaching preaching after Dr. Patterson.

He wasn’t just an expository preacher. He was a preaching lyricist of the highest order. To hear Dr. Patterson was to hear gumbo-listic preaching – he hit you with the text, oratory, poetry, interrogative statements (“I ask myself each day, Al Patterson are you….”), engagement, tenacity for the truths of the text, humor and truth. You would leave a preaching moment with Dr. Patterson in awe.

Later in life, in my 20s, I had the privilege to be selected to be a facilitator for a class at the L.K. Williams Institute and the speaker was none other than Dr. Patterson. Those moments before and after the class were priceless. I was the only one there from Portland and I hadn’t been pastoring yet and Dr. Patterson’s syllabus was not the notes he passed out, but the words he spoke.

Years later, our paths crossed at least once a year at WHW Ministries’ Expository Preaching and Teaching Conference, the L.K. Williams Institute, the E.K. Bailey Expository International Expository Preaching Conference, the National Baptist Convention, USA, Inc., and the Greater Trinity Baptist Church where one of his beloved sons in the faith, Dr. Clyde Elliott Gaines is the pastor.

Screen Shot 2014-04-09 at 7.11.02 PMAt that time in San Diego, I was pastoring the New Hope Friendship Missionary Baptist Church and Dr. Patterson came every year and as his time came to stand, he was always complimentary of yours truly. “Pastor Houston is what we would call a quadruple threat . . . he can sing, tickle the ivories of the piano and organ, pray, and can preach.” I always valued his complimentary nature and you could tell he was not being just polite and he never passed out complimentary comments that were not true.

“Dr. Pat” as many of us call him sent young preachers flocking to the front row. He was a living example that you didn’t need a whoop, didn’t need the accompaniment of musicians, didn’t need a soulful strut in your voice, and you didn’t need a fancy suit to preach. He didn’t just closed but it was celebratory. He didn’t try to whoop but it was like lion’s roar. And the favorite of many a preacher (including me) was when he began to gear into his close he had almost a “crying close” when he would drop to the bass of his range, “…. and I—- don’t know how long it will be . . .” That was the Patterson moment I waited for in the sermon.

He leaves a plethora of preachers whom he has influenced. From the way we wore our suits (always black suits, tie, and extra long shirt cuffs), to an attentive ear during the sermon and an infectious smile. He wasn’t just a preacher, he was THE TEMPLATE for preachers.

He was a preacher, pastor, theologian, husband and a father of preachers. His traveling companion was his beloved wife, Melba and he had three children – Anthony, Albert III, Alan, and Alette.

A few highlights from his storied career:

– Recognized three times by his peers as a “Living Legend.”
– Taught and preached at the National Baptist Convention, USA, Inc.
– Lectured for the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association.
– Lectured for the Promise Keepers.
– Lectured for the Preachers Division, National Baptist Congress.
– Named by Ebony as one of America’s Greatest Black Preachers.
– Inducted into the Morehouse College Hall of Preachers.
– Pastored congregations in California and Texas.
– Author of three books, “Joy For the Journey,” “Wisdom in Strange Places,” and “Prerequisites for a Good Journey.”
– Lecturer, The Urban Alternative.
– Lecturer, American Baptist College, Nashville, TN.
– Lecturer, Mid-American Theological Seminary.
– Presenter in all four National Baptist conventions.
– Guest preacher in 14 State Conventions.
– Conductor of 25 different cities’ City Wide Revival.
– Lecturer, Morehouse College of Religion.
– Writer for Judson Press.
– Writer for the African-American Pulpit.
– Preacher of over 100 sermons and lecturers in the National Baptist Convention.

There will never be another Albert Louis Patterson, Jr.  As he would close sometimes, “When I can read my title clear to mansions in the skies, I bid farewell to every fear, and wipe my weeping eyes . . .”

Well done, Dr. Patterson, well done.

YOUR COMMENTS WELCOMED

YOLO

Photo on 5-9-13 at 9.33 PM #2by Robert Earl Houston

You ever looked at your calendar, pastor? Looked at all of the events, the Revivals, the Annual Days, the Conventions, the Conferences, the Continuing Education events . . . only to discover you don’t have any time to live?

I’m in the process of deleting some events from my calendar for a very good reason – I need some time to enjoy life. I’m 53 years old, a husband, a father, a pastor of a thriving congregation, a State President, Chairman of a Publishing Board for our state General Association, a board member of the Progressive National Baptist Convention, member of the Frankfort/Franklin County Ministerial Association, and on and on and on.

I discovered three things:

# 1 – Things Will Go On Without You

At 53, I’m not trying to make a name. I think that’s already been done by history. I’ve pastored 4 churches, held positions, preached, played, sang, read scripture, counted money, and done whatever has been asked of me denominationally. I’m at the point now where notoriety is no longer sought out.

When I was at Dr. Timothy James Winters’ funeral, several of the pastors there asked me for my business card and I reached into my pocket, and there weren’t any there. I brought them with me, but it wasn’t a high priority item – I came there to mourn my friend’s death and celebrate his entrance into eternal life.

Life will show you that it goes on without you. Every group I’ve ever been a part of has continued to thrive. Every convention that I have worked for is still doing the work of the Kingdom. Even a break, brother pastor, will show you that.

#2 – There is a Generational Shift

At 53, me and many others in our 50s are hurriedly moving into the category of “sages.” Many years ago, Dr. Asa W. Sampson, Sr. of Houston, TX brought me to Houston to preach and he showed me the area of Houston where, then, many of the successful pastors in Houston lived at – It was on a street called “Sage Trail.”

The progression goes from young preacher, to pastor, to senior (whether it’s seniority or job title) to sage. The purpose of a sage is to be a resource to young pastors who are coming behind you in ministry. Of a truth, many of the preachers that I hang out with now are younger, who seek out my fellowship, advice, and sometimes ask for very blunt assessments – like many of us did 20 years ago.

Frankly, some of us who’ve been around for years and years need to move out of the way in conventions and let the younger guys give leadership. One thing that the early PNBC fathers did were to allow some brash 30 and 40 year olds give leadership to the group – men like J. Alfred Smith, Sr., Ralph W. Canty, and others. Fresh minds are not a threat to me at this age.

#3 – There’s No Place Like Home

As many of us know, being on the road can be burdensome and tiring. In my 20s and 30s – no a problem, but as I mature, I don’t want to spend 30-40 weeks on the road. It’s not healthy for any pastor to be gone so much that when he preaches on Sunday, his congregation treats him like a guest preacher instead of their pastor.

At this point, relationships with my members is more important than ever. Ministering to my wife and family, as they become older and start making the procession to the grave, is now more important than ever. A few weeks ago I went home to see my Mother and her caregiver dressed her “church style” and my family members took pictures together, thanks to a family friend.  I stepped out of the living room and into the kitchen where my aunt was and shed some tears – because I didn’t know if this was going to be the last time I would see mom alive or not.

Relationships with my wife, our extended family are now more important than ever. My church knows (I pray) that their pastor loves them very, very much. It’s been a great 5 years with this congregation and looking forward to many more – but I’m doing some things now to make myself available to them, because again, relationship are now more important than ever.

Suggestions:

1.  Travel. Not to places you’ve always gone to, but create a memory by going to new places.

2.  Try new food. I try to make a habit of checking out local restaurants. I don’t do breakfast at Denny’s in Los Angeles, because they’re everywhere – so I’ll try Roscoe’s Chicken and Waffles, because I can’t get that here.

3.  Try some new hobbies. In a few days, I’m going to take up two hobbies – one is playing a guitar. My father was a bass guitar player and one of the things I wanted to do in High School, but never followed through on, was playing a bass. I love acoustic jazz music and I can’t wait to learn how to play a guitar.

4.  Enjoy life. I’m on a second week of not eating processed sugar or adding it to my diet and so far it’s been great – face is “thinning out” (I’m almost back to one chin – LOL) and waist line is getting smaller. Food tastes differently, sleep is better (I try not to eat after sunset), and I have not more energy, but better energy.

Because, you only live (here) once.

YOUR COMMENTS ARE WELCOMED.

Noah

by Robert Earl Houston

This is not going to be pretty.

This afternoon me and a few members of my church went to see the movie Noah. I had heard about the box office success it was enjoying and the counterweight – that the film’s director was an atheist, etc. So I decided to give it a try and draw my own conclusions.

It was horrible.

First, most people have a scattering of a notion of the real story. God has pronounced judgement upon the earth, He selects Noah and his family to survive the flooding of the earth. The Lord sends animals into the Ark, both male and female, of all living creatures. Noah and his family (including their sons) survive. Upon landing on shore, Noah gets drunk and his nakedness is seen by his son Ham while his other sons walk backwards to cover their father’s nakedness.

This cinematic train wreck is flawed in many of the major details:

1.  Why are all the characters talking in King James english? Russell Crowe and the cast all talk in their native tongues, but it is distracting and it’s almost a ploy to make it seem more biblical if it were written in old english.

2.  Maybe I’m weak on my Bible knowledge, but I don’t recall God sending angels to the earth and they become rock creatures. The last time I saw a rock creature was in “Galaxy Quest” and they were more believable because they didn’t talk. These “creatures” talk gibberish and it doesn’t make sense that when they die they go back to heaven in a beam of light.

3.  I don’t remember Ham’s contempt for his father. Neither did Ham meet a women in one scene and then they were star-crossed lovers. Also, Noah cursed him after he discovered his father’s nakedness. This was like watching a bad father-son movie.

4.  Noah’s wife did a lot of talking especially in a culture that did not allowed that (early centuries).

5.  What really bugged me was the casting of Russell Crowe. He was more Maximus than Noah. His makeup and haircuts were distracting. He paces back and forth in the Ark (planning to kill his grandchildren – which made no sense whatsoever) like he’s about to enter the Gladiator ring and then at the end of the movie he’s mentally imbalanced. So let me get this right, according to the movie, Noah figured that God wanted to save the animals but not human beings? So, why didn’t the Lord use animals to build the ark instead of the rock creatures???

6.  There was a theme that somehow his grandfather and himself carried the Harry Potter gene and had superpowers, i.e. like the Heroes TV show from years ago. I don’t recall Methuselah was ever known for anything and that he had a berry fetish.

7. I’m surprised and maybe I wasn’t notified – but if this all occurred in the fertile crescent of the Middle East, it was a pretty pale cast. I don’t recall seeing one dark or darker face. It looked like the flood happened in Europe – but I do think that the after-flood scenes were partially filmed on the Oregon coast.

8.  The special effects were better than the film. The film director envisioned that the animals loaded up on the ark and went into some kind of instant hibernation, which was weird because they were in hibernation throughout the ship and Noah asks his son, “Did you wake them?”  Huh????

9.  A stowaway on the ark and it’s Tubal-cain? I was an active 32nd Degree Mason and when I heard him say he was a king, my memory reminded me that he was a mason who specialized in metalworks. He was never a king and didn’t have kingly aspirations or lead an army.

Bottom line – if you’re going, you need to have your theological stance straightened out before you walk in the door. You won’t hear the name “God” or “Jehovah” and it differs so much from the written text that you’ll wind up doing what several couples did around me – present a running critique of the movie as it was playing.

I hope Hollywood doesn’t think that just because we’re Christians that we’ll swallow whatever they present to us and support it. This is one movie I recommend NOT SEEING.

Vacant Church: Fellowship Missionary Baptist Church, Minneapolis, Minnesota

 

The Context 

From the beginning, Fellowship Missionary Baptist Church (www.fellowshipmb.org) has been dedicated and committed to fostering and experiencing a sense of fellowship, thus the name. This connectedness and relationality can be observed and experienced in many different settings.

FMBC has been in existence for 21 years and holds affiliation with both the American Baptist Church and National Baptist Church conferences, FMBC at its core is theologically Baptist. Yet, it has embraced a unique governance structure. The congregation is led and overseen by three leadership bodies: the Board of Deacons, the Board of Trustees and the Board of Christian Education. While sometimes cumbersome to navigate, this ‘tri-cameral’ structure creates wonderful opportunity for members to utilize their gifts in leadership and ensures that the congregation is represented in direction-setting and decision-making.

North Minneapolis, where FMBC is located, is a community growing in its diversity, yet predominately African-American it has a unique history, a strong sense of self, and a growing hope and optimism. Yet, within itself there exists a community marked by cultural transition, persistent poverty, ambiguous economic prospects, a devastated housing market, and a languishing educational system. As of late, the tide has begun to shift. New collaborations are emerging, public resources are better focused into the region and groups across sectors are working to revitalize this once strong neighborhood.

The Need 

With an annual budget of $1.2m, generous giving and significant participation in leadership and ministry by the members, ‘the engine’ that is FMBC, is well-built and ready to go. Because of a current lack of clarity, identity and direction, FMBC needs the ‘spark plugs tuned’ and ‘new fuel’ to reclaim its identity and fulfil the original mission with a new shared vision, strategic direction and call to action. FMBC is a church with a dream hidden in the hearts and minds of its people waiting to be awakened and sparked. The people are expectant and guardedly hopeful as they prepare for and await the next Senior Pastor. This will require a visionary shepherd/leader that is relationally savvy and able to work collaboratively. This shepherd/leader will capture the hearts and

minds of all ages and inspire the members into a deeper following of Christ and utilization of their talents, time and financial resources for more significant community impact.

The Opportunity 

The next Senior Pastor of FMBC will lead the church and its members from the current reality into regained momentum, a new era of deepened discipleship and missional outreach and anywhere else God might lead FMBC. This person will engender trust by walking the talk of the Gospel message, consistently demonstrating a deep relationship with Christ as first and foremost the spiritually strong leader of the congregation. He/She will be able to bring people together, building bridges relationally, listening well and seeking to deeply understand the perspectives and needs of those who call FMBC home. The Senior Pastor will work collegially with leaders, staff and lay ministers getting everyone on the same page and then empower others for mission and ministry.

The Senior Pastor at FMBC is the one who casts the vision, but this is not done in isolation from the input and wisdom of the boards and congregation. They will be able to thrive in a complex culture by being able to hold, sometimes competing priorities, and multiple forces, in balance while seeking to identify the consistent voice. Part of what this means is honoring the traditional elements of FMBC and transforming them into more progressive and fresh expressions.

Qualifications 

Meets and satisfies the Biblical mandates as outlined in I Timothy 3:1-7 and Titus 1:6-9 (Women are not excluded)

Significant years of experience leading a congregation of 500 members or more

Masters degree required (preferably a Masters of Divinity from an accredited university or seminary)

Holding current ordination from a Baptist body

If you know someone who would be a good fit for this role, please reply to: 

Rick Heltne 

Senior Search Consultant-SIMA Minneapolis 

rheltne@simainternational.com

Vacant Church: Second Baptist Church, Kokomo, Indiana (Open Until Filled)

 

Page 1 of 10 3/1/2014 

 

SECOND MISSIONARY BAPTIST CHURCH 

KOKOMO, IN 

PASTORAL VACANCY ANNOUNCEMENT 

POSITION OPEN 3/7/2014 UNTIL FILLED 

The Second Missionary Baptist Church was founded and organized in 1887 making it one of the oldest congregations in the city of Kokomo, IN. The membership consists of approximately 273 active members. With the retirement (after 32 years) of our recent Pastor, Rev. Dr. Robert A. Lee, the Pulpit Search Committee is seeking the mind and will of God as we continue our inheritance. Second Missionary Baptist Church has been a beacon of light in the Kokomo Community for 126 years. Our new pastor must be responsible for the biblical and spiritual obligations unto God as outlined in 1 Timothy 3:1-7 and Titus 1:5-9. Therefore, a candidate must be a man after God’s own heart (1 Samuel 13:14). Second Missionary Baptist Church seeks a visionary with strong leadership skills who will preach the gospel of Jesus Christ, teach sound Baptist doctrine, engage in pastoral care, direct Christian growth and development, and promote missions and the Great Commission for expanding the Kingdom of God. The pastor is also responsible for the overall leadership of the day-to-day operations of the church, services, membership and the wider community through evangelism and edification. Page 2 of 10 3/1/2014 

 

LIST OF REQUIREMENTS FOR PASTORAL CANDIDATES 

1. Candidate must have at least five years Baptist Church pastoral experience 

 

A. Licensed and Ordained Baptist Minister 

 

2. Earned accredited degree is required; a minimum Bachelors of Theology/Divinity Degree and secular preferred from an accredited institution 

 

3. Must have a clear understanding of Baptist Church Doctrine 

 

A. Provide a balanced overview of the whole counsel of God 

B. Deal with Doctrinal issues that may need particular attention 

C. Apply biblical principles to moral, ethical and political issues 

D. Ensure that encouragement, reproof and correction are in balance 

E. Conduct baptisms and oversee membership 

F. Give opportunity for people to respond to gospel message/accept Christ 

G. Administer/conduct the Lord’s Supper 

 

4. Love and Ability to Preach and Teach God’s Word 

 

A. The ability to prepare and deliver biblically sound, inspirational and spirit filled sermons 

B. The ability to provide biblical based teaching 

C. Preach Sunday Worship Services (8:00am and 11:00am) and Mid-Week Service 

D. Teach Bible study 

E. Strong supporter of the Ministry of Christian Education 

 

5. Strong in Evangelism 

 

A. Disciple, equip and teach the congregation to train believers in the basics of the Christian life so that they may be assimilated into the congregation, grow and reproduce in order to impact their homes, church and community 

B. Disciple new believers 

C. Provide leadership development opportunities 

D. Equip congregation to disciple others 

E. Train, organize and lead members to do visitation of and witnessing to unsaved persons 

F. Set example in cultivating unsaved persons 

G. Lead church in planning regular outreach/revival emphasis 

H. Provide advice and supportive resources to the wider community 

I. Minister and visitation to ill and bereaved members 

 

6. Love for God and People 

A. Must be a born again baptized believer in Jesus Christ 

B. Lead members to trust and love God so that they desire to serve Him 

C. Lead the members to love one another and their neighbors 

D. Encourage stewardship, missions support and tithing 

Page 3 of 10 3/1/2014 

 

 

7. Be Innovative to Move Forward 

A. Establish a vision and develop a strategic plan for the church 

B. Create an outreach vision that is both Local and Foreign Mission oriented 

C. Develop and implement a strategic plan for healthy church growth, membership growth, financial growth and facility growth 

 

8. Strong Knowledge of the Bible 

A. Skilled in biblical teaching 

 

9. Demonstrated Community Involvement 

A. Lead the congregation in planning, conducting and evaluating its local, national and worldwide missions 

B. Willing to support and participate in Local, State and National Conventions and Congresses 

C. Maintain contact with all church supported missions 

 

10. Diversity Minded 

A. Develop a long range plan for Pulpit Ministry, disciplining and equipping, and community outreach 

B. Have a vision for growing church membership that is both educated in the word of God and strong in relationship with Christ, particularly a vision, commitment and experience for increasing the numbers and spiritual development of youth, young adults and adults in the congregation 

 

11. Able to keep confidentiality 

A. Counseling troubled people and those in need 

B. Spiritual counseling of church members 

C. Moral integrity must be above reproach 

 

12. Conflict Resolution 

A. Ensure that prayer has a prominent place both in the church and personal lives 

B. Work with the Deacons in maintaining a spiritually healthy church 

C. Lead church to develop policies that would help members participate in an orderly and deliberate manner 

 

13. Demonstrated Spirit of Unity 

A. Oversee worship service in collaboration with the Music Ministry 

B. Consistently connect with deacons, minsters, colleagues and resource persons 

C. Provide leadership/workshop development opportunities 

 

14. Pastor selected must reside or be willing to relocate to Kokomo, Indiana 

 

15. Be Mission Minded 

A. Leading the congregation in planning, conducting and evaluating its Local, State, National and Worldwide Missions 

B. Actively support Domestic and Foreign Missions 

C. Offer advice on use of mission and benevolence funds 

Page 4 of 10 3/1/2014 

 

The successful candidate must possess at a minimum the following personal qualities and skills:

 Leadership skills

 Excellent speaker

 Teaching skills

 Humility

 Intelligent

 Dedicated and driven

 Visionary

 Preaching style that provides practical and clear application where the scriptural text provides the meaning

 Mission Minded

 

How to Apply:

All interested and qualified persons must submit an initial candidate package consisting of the following documentation:

 Completed Second Missionary Baptist Church job application (included)

 Current resume

 Cover letter

 Copy of ministerial license and ordination certificate

 Copy of degree(s)

 Four recommendation letters – clergy, professional, personal (at least 2 from clergy)

 Provide current photo of yourself

 Provide DVD/CD of recent sermon

 

All information submitted will be treated confidential. Additional information may be requested and/or required.

FINAL CANDIDATES MUST CONSENT TO: REFERENCE CHECKS, AND EDUCATION/CREDENTIAL VERIFICATION, A CRIMINAL HISTORY BACKGROUND CHECK, A DRUG TEST, AND A CREDIT AND FINANCIAL HISTORY REVIEW. 

Send application and documents to:

Second Missionary Baptist Church

Attn: Pastoral Search Committee

PO Box 739

Kokomo, IN 46903-0739

or email application and documents to:

smbcpulpit@yahoo.com Page 5 of 10 3/1/2014 

 

SECOND MISSIONARY BAPTIST CHURCH PASTOR APPLICATION FORM 

PERSONAL INFORMATION DATE: _____________________________

Name: _________________________________________________________________________________

Present address: _________________________________________________________________________

How long: ____________________________ Birth Date: ___________________________________

Telephone: Home ( ) Business ( ) Cell ( ) _____

Email address: Personal website address (if available): __________________

lf hired, can you present proof of your legal right to live and work in this country? YES NO N/A

Number of years lived in the U.S. ____________

Marital Status: Married Separated Divorced Widowed Single

lf Married, Name of Spouse:_________________________________________________________________

ls this your first Spouse? YES NO

Names and Ages of Children:

________________________________________________________________________________________

________________________________________________________________________________________

________________________________________________________________________________________

Are you ordained: YES NO Date and Place of Ordination: ___________________________________

Denomination: ___________________________________________________________________________

Are you interested in relocating to Kokomo if you are selected? YES NO EDUCATION BACKGROUND
THE WIRE

by Pastor Robert Earl Houston

H.B. Charles Jr.

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