ST. LOUIS—God calls pastors to service and He also calls families. Charles McCormick, the new pastor of Salem Baptist Church in northeast St. Louis County, is a testimony to this.
“We moved from Dahlgren, Illinois,” McCormick said, “where we considered Mount Vernon (Illinois) as ‘town’ to us.”
Mount Vernon was the center of the circle for his service. McCormick served as pastor in Dahlgren from 2002 to March 2011. Previously, he served as the pastor of Williams Chapel Missionary Baptist Church.
McCormick’s call came during his early twenties while faithfully attending Thompsonville First Baptist Church of Thompsonville, Ill., with his wife and three young daughters. He was working as a heavy equipment mechanic in a nearby rock quarry.
“Within a few months,” he said, “I was working as a bi-vocational minister. Then, I resigned my job to concentrate on my education through Liberty University in addition to serving as pastor.”
Many wives might be surprised by the sudden call of a family member to God’s service, but Kristi McCormick takes it in stride. Her late grandfather was a minister and her father and younger brother are ministers.
“She understands and shares the call,” McCormick said. “It’s a great help to me.”
Kristi McCormick has a degree in Business Administration from Mid-Continent University. According to Charles McCormick, she is looking forward to pursuing employment opportunities in St. Louis.
McCormick believes God is leading him to implement a new philosophy of ministry at Salem. “He wants me to be a disciple and to make disciples by the example Jesus set,” he said. “When a person looks at Scripture at how Jesus’ attitude related to His disciples, it gets down to the core of His ministry. This study unlocked a new perspective of faith for me.”
McCormick and the congregation of Salem have some common goals. “We want to develop a church ready to lead and to develop an environment effective in reaching others for Jesus and for growing people in Jesus.
McCormick smiles when he talks of the growth of Salem’s youth ministry. “I brought good additions to the youth group with me,” he says referring to his three daughters, Charlee K (16) and 13-year-old twins, Elizabeth and Hannah.
VICKI STAMPS/contributing writer