April 22, 2003
JEFFERSON CITY – Bob Caldwell, a Southwest Baptist University graduate, has been named Director of Evangelism for the Missouri Baptist Convention (MBC).
A member of Springhill Baptist Church, Springfield, Caldwell formed Global Encounter Ministries after graduation and has been involved with leading mission efforts in Missouri, elsewhere in the United States and worldwide.
"I was saved in 1986," Caldwell said. "It was during my college year that I tried to determine what God’s will is for my life. I never felt like God was calling me to be a pastor. I felt from the beginning that God wanted me to be in evangelism.
The mission door opened for Caldwell shortly after finishing at SBU.
"Somebody approached me about taking a group from southern Missouri on a mission trip to Houston, Texas, I had spent some time there during my college days on ministry. I took 20 people and got bit by that bug."
The mission organization grew rapidly, with numerous trips to the inner-city of Houston, to northern India, to Corpus Christi and, most recently, to the St. Louis metropolitan area.
"I’m not smart enough to put together something like Global Encounter Ministries. It was totally, absolutely God. He did it all.
"I’m 40 years old now, and the idea of coming off the street is a little more appealing," Caldwell said. "The time has come for me to go do everything I can to multiply … to train other evangelists all over this state.
"God has strategically placed 2,000-plus churches right here in the center of the United States. When God begins to move, I see it starting in Missouri and a rippling effect going way beyond the borders of this state."
Kenny Qualls, MBC associate director, served as Caldwell’s pastor before accepting the MBC job.
"I have personally been with Bob on foreign missions fields, local missions and revivals and have gone soul winning with him. He understands that the heartbeat of Jesus is for none to perish and all to be saved," Qualls said.
"He brings a wealth of experience and knowledge in hands-on ministry. A generation of young evangelists coming up have been personally mentored by Bob. He’s preached in megachurches like First Baptist, Houston, and also preached in some of the smallest rural churches in Missouri .
"Bob knows that its not the size of a church that matters. He knows the church is the Lord’s bridge."