David Tolliver to be nominated as MBC president
By Bob Baysinger
October 21, 2003
JEFFERSON CITY – David Tolliver, pastor of Pisgah Baptist Church, Excelsior Springs, will be nominated to serve as the 2004 Missouri Baptist Convention (MBC) president.
Tolliver served as the 2002 MBC recording secretary and is now a member of the convention’s legal task force which is charged with overseeing the legal effort to recover five breakaway MBC agencies.
Mitchell Jackson, pastor of Miner Baptist Church, Sikeston, will be nominated as first vice president; Tim Smith, pastor of First Baptist Church, Ewing, as second vice president; and Connie Urich, wife of Missouri native Gary Urich, pastor at Southern Hills Baptist Church, Bolivar, as recording secretary.
This slate of candidates has been endorsed by the Missouri Baptist Layman’s Association (MBLA).
"If elected, these candidates will indeed continue the conservative course the MBC is now headed," said Roger Moran, research director for the MBLA. "These people are conservative, Bible-believing Southern Baptists. They are all committed to continuing the relationship we now have with the Southern Baptist Convention."
If nominated and elected, Tolliver said his top priority would be to ensure that the MBC maintains its present course, focusing on evangelism, missions and church planting.
"We are headed in the right direction," Tolliver said. "I believe the Southern Baptist Convention turned in the right direction when the conservative resurgence began, and all we’ve done in Missouri is line ourselves up with the conservative thinking of the SBC."
A fourth-generation Missouri Baptist pastor, Tolliver earned his masters and doctorate degrees at Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary.
"Midwestern was completely liberal when I was there," Tolliver explained. "Both of my seminary degrees were under Milton Ferguson (former president at Midwestern). I was too old for his theology to have any effect on me, but it was difficult because there was a different attitude at Midwestern than the attitude that is there now.
"What I believe now is what I have believed all my life," Tolliver added.
Tolliver, who was saved as a 7-year-old boy, said his father, who died recently at Warrenton, had a great influence through his preaching.
Tolliver said he and his older brother were baptized the same day by their dad.
"I had heard the Gospel since I was born, but I came to the point where I understood that I wasn’t a Christian just because my name was Tolliver. I was convinced that I needed to be saved, but I thought my older brother ought to be saved first," he said.
"My grandfather also had an impact on me. He (Max Payne) served as pastor of Central Baptist Church at Eureka for 32 years. And my great-grandfather (Robert Maness) was a circuit-riding preacher and started many of the churches in Franklin County."
Jackson, a native of Cape Girardeau, served as a youth pastor for 20 years before taking his first pastorate at Ava, Ill.
Smith has served as pastor of the Ewing church since 1993. He is a native of Illinois and attended Hannibal-LaGrange College.
Urich, a graduate of the Methodist Hospital nursing program in St. Joseph, is a licensed practical nurse. She worked for a county health department in Arkansas before moving to Bolivar.