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50 years pastoring one church!

Discussion in 'Other Discussions' started by annsni, Jan 14, 2018.

  1. annsni

    annsni Administrator
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    Today we celebrated the 50th anniversary of our pastor coming to our church! 50 years of faithful ministry! In the last year he has stepped back from preaching and handed the senior pastor role to the senior associate pastor but he is still here and still imparting his wisdom. While there have been times that have been hard and we didn't always see eye to eye, I'm grateful for the longevity and faithfulness to the Lord that we have had as an example through the years. We had a lovely service and a few things that came out of the testimonies of 4 of the men who were saved and raised up to pastoring and ministry of their own were: Pastor was faithful, studied, had a love for the Lord, was brave, a visionary, a mentor and while he didn't always do things the "right" way, he served God well. :) I hope to have the same thing said of our ministry in 50 years!
     
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  2. Jerome

    Jerome Well-Known Member
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    What a blessing.

    Here's another, from a Baptist church (Fundamental Baptist Fellowship):

    garbc.org/ministry-highlights/atlanta-church-and-pastor-celebrate-50th-anniversary/
     
  3. David Kent

    David Kent Well-Known Member
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    An American Missionary who we know in France, has been in France for over 30 years, originally learning French. then pastoring a small Baptist Church, For at least the last 15 years he has been disabled, preaching from a wheelchair. He has constant pain, and sever sleep apnea, and has to have a machine on at night to wake him up if his breathing stops.

    He used to do an adult Sunday School at 10.00 am and a service at 11.00 am. but has had to cut it down to one service as he was falling asleep while preaching. He is now over 70 and his wife said he may have to retire in the near future, but the reason he has not retired before is that there is so far no one to replace him.
     
  4. Salty

    Salty 20,000 Posts Club
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    Actually there is someone to replace him - that individual just needs to submit to the will of the Lord.
     
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  5. JPPT1974

    JPPT1974 Member
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    Here is to fifty more years and counting. God bless you all!
     
  6. agedman

    agedman Well-Known Member
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    My wife and I help support a man and wife that are close to 90. He was called to the mission field in his early twenties, quit college and without any formal support but the total reliance upon the Lord has won countless and planted churches in the many decades.

    He refuses to leave the mission field, and graciously serves others in reaching, teaching, establishing, and exampling.

    He desires to be leading someone to Christ with his final breaths.

    His wife is just as faithful
     
  7. Squire Robertsson

    Squire Robertsson Administrator
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    My home church has had only two senior pastors since Pearl Harbor. One from 1942 'til 1977. The other from 1977 to the present.
     
  8. Reformed

    Reformed Well-Known Member
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    That is impressive.
     
  9. Salty

    Salty 20,000 Posts Club
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    Which begs the question - why do so many pastors only spend 3-5 years at a church before moving on?
     
  10. agedman

    agedman Well-Known Member
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    Never had a heart for the children.
     
  11. Squire Robertsson

    Squire Robertsson Administrator
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    I think it developed from following the old Methodist Episcopal model.
     
  12. Salty

    Salty 20,000 Posts Club
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    Could be publicly they say the Lord is leading them elsewhere - but in reality - they may be running away from a problem or two.
     
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  13. agedman

    agedman Well-Known Member
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    I knew a pastor who only had enough sermons outlined for three years.
     
  14. annsni

    annsni Administrator
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    Well, after just a short time of our pastor being at our church, there was a move to oust him but he withstood that and has been here ever since. I was looking through some of our old photo albums and history and I saw where another former pastor's info was and (I knew this already but it was cool to see pictures) it was John Lotz, father of Danny Lotz, Anne Graham Lotz's husband. :) Danny grew up for a number of years in our church and went to the high school my kids have attended. I believe we have had 3 pastors now since our church was founded but maybe it is 4?
     
  15. Yeshua1

    Yeshua1 Well-Known Member
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    This shows that the only real retirement plan of God towards his own is when He calls them home!
     
  16. annsni

    annsni Administrator
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    I don't QUITE agree with that. :) Pastoring is hard physically, emotionally and mentally. I think it is good for senior pastors to step down from the pastorate and pass it on to the next generation but that doesn't mean their work is done. Even if they were to "retire", I think pastoring is in their blood and doing things like mentoring, teaching and counseling would continue naturally. I think it is great for a man who has been in the pulpit for many years to be a mentor to younger pastors to guide them and pray for them through their own experiences. But I do think that it is also OK for a pastor to leave the leadership and enjoy the wife of his youth in his last years. Our pastor is having some problems with memory and he is entering a time that might be very difficult for him and his family and I think it is good and right for them to spend time together to enjoy each other while they can.
     
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  17. Jerome

    Jerome Well-Known Member
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    Appalachian Pastor Serves Same Baptist Church 54 Years

    "PIPPA PASSES, Ky. – At a time when the longevity of most pastorates is measured in single digits, Lawrence Baldridge is an anomaly, having served Caney Baptist Church in the heart of Appalachia for 54 years....his church also draws people from surrounding communities like Booger Branch, Onion Blade, Hemp Patch and Bunion Fork, where he happens to live."

    "'He came here more than a half century ago and has faithfully ministered to the sick, comforted the grieving, and buried the dead. He’s been there for the births of babies, for the weddings of our young men and women, for every major milestone in life.'"

    "The average tenure of pastors nationally is three to four years, said Tom Rainer, president and chief executive of LifeWay Christian Resources, a Nashville-based organization affiliated with the Southern Baptist Convention."

    "Baldridge [is] a 'true mountain renaissance man' who has been heavily involved in community development as a means of helping people out of poverty....Baldridge and his wife, Martha, the daughter of missionaries to Brazil, arrived at Caney Creek when still in their twenties....with the intention of staying only two years"

    "Baldridge has taught at Alice Lloyd College, The June Buchanan School, and Hazard Community and Technical College. For a while, he wrote commentary for the local newspaper, the Troublesome Creek Times. He is noted for coordinating the visit of the late U.S. Sen. Robert F. Kennedy to Pippa Passes to highlight the economic needs of the people of Appalachia."
     
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  18. FriendofSpurgeon

    FriendofSpurgeon Well-Known Member
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    Agreed. One way for them to "pastor" is handle interim assignments when there is a search for a new pastor. I've seen this several times to the church's benefit. It allows the search committee the necessary time to do its job without the issue of "why don't we just hire the interim?" Plus, he provides a stabilizing influence on the church during what is normally a difficult time.

    Another way is for them to stay involved is to work with a mission board. Here, they can help develop new missionaries, assist them with their deputation, etc.
     
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