October 21, 2002
SPRINGFIELD–Kenny Qualls and Monte Shinkle, pastors of two of the Missouri Baptist Convention’s (MBC) strongest churches, will be nominated for president and first vice president at the 2002 annual convention at Springfield.
Qualls has served as pastor of Springhill Baptist Church, located seven miles north of Springfield, since November, 1990. Shinkle has filled the pulpit at Concord Baptist Church, Jefferson City, since August, 1991.
A graduate of Southwest Baptist University and a seminary extension graduate, Qualls recently told his church that he had been asked be a candidate for the position of president.
"For a door like this to open for a guy like me, it’s of the Lord," Qualls said. "I don’t have the age or the education. If elected, I’m told that I might be the first president under the age of 40. I know who I am, and I’m about as common as a Styrofoam cup. It’s got to be of God.
"All I want is what God wants. One of my favorite sayings is that, "His will will never take you where His grace will never sustain you. It’s got to be of God."
Qualls, 39, said he knows why God is calling him to lead the MBC at this time in history.
"I’m not doing this because of ego or so I can pad some resume for some future appointment. And I’m not doing it to help me climb some denominational ladder," he stated.
"I do believe God is calling me to do this because people are dying and going to Hell in Missouri. And we Springhill Baptist _ have a unique opportunity for one year to have a direct impact on 2,000 churches and 650,000 Southern Baptists in Missouri.
"I’m as sure of this call as I am of the call when God called me here (to Springhill) back in November of 1990."
Qualls said he still hasn’t gotten over his conversion while a student at Southwest Missouri State University at Springfield.
"I was a freshman at SMS. It was December of 1981," he said. "I was not raised in church, but I was driving past a cemetery one day and realized that one day I, too, would die. That’s when the greatest question I’ve ever dealt with hit me and hit me hard . . . Why am I here?
"About one week later, I went into the office of Calvin Mayberry at Hamlin Memorial Baptist Church in Springfield. He told me that I was created for the purpose of having a relationship with Jesus Christ. He shared the simple plan of salvation, and I knelt that day and asked the Lord to be my Savior."
Qualls frequently is involved in revivals and conferences as well as being a member of the Southern Baptist Convention Executive Committee. He has served the last year as first vice president of the Missouri Baptist Convention.
Kenny and his wife, Donna, have two children, Dustin, 12, and Lauren, 6.
"I’m so excited about our new executive director, David Clippard, and his vision for Missouri in evangelism and church planting.
"It’s exciting to think that in some small way I and my church can contribute next year to the expansion of God’s Kingdom," Qualls said. "Such a neat thing about the Cooperative Program is that we can all work together.
Shinkle has served as pastor of Concord Baptist Church, Jefferson City, since August, 1991. He and his wife, Betty, have four children. His oldest son, Nathan, is married to the former Debbie Taylor, daughter of Gary Taylor, pastor of First Baptist Church, O’Fallon and a former president of the MBC. His other children, Aaron, 23, Jonathan, 19, and Hannah, 16, live at home.
A native Gallatin County, Ky., Shinkle is a graduate of the University of Kentucky and later attended Mid-America Baptist Theological Seminary in Memphis, earning both a Masters of Divinity and Doctor of Ministry degree.
Other than Concord, he has pastored Clark’s Creek Baptist Church, Dry Ridge, Ky.; Second Baptist Church, Leachville, Ark.; and First Baptist, Washington, Mo.
In 1997 he served as president of the Missouri Baptist Pastor’s Conference. He also has served as a member of the Southern Baptist Convention Nominating Committee, Missouri Baptist Nominating Committee, and Missouri Baptist Resolution Committee.
He presently is a member of the President’s Advisory Council of Mid-America Baptist Theological Seminary, and the Order of Business Committee for the Missouri Baptist Convention. He also is a trustee at Hannibal-LaGrange College. He annually preaches several revival meetings.
As of Oct. 18, neither faced opposition.