At the end of 2019, Tommy Smothers retired as pastor of New Friendship Baptist Church, Somerville, where he served for 35 years.
After being licensed to preach at 18 years old and ordained four years later, Smothers spent more than 51 years pursuing God’s call on his life. While stationed at Del Rio Air Force Base in Texas in his early 20s, Smothers pastored Pumpyville Baptist Church. He returned home to Gordo after the military and began college at Samford University in Birmingham. Shortly after he became interim pastor of his home church, Flatwoods Baptist, Gordo. Since that time Smothers served as pastor of Springhill Baptist Church, Carrollton; Pine Grove Baptist Church, Ethelsville; and Highland Baptist Church, Clanton; before being called to New Friendship Baptist in 1984.
It was at Highland Baptist that Smothers met his wife, Cathy, and had twin boys.
Smothers graduated from New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary in 1979.
Smothers’ time at New Friendship has seen its highs and lows but he has stayed faithful, said church member Patricia Slaten.
“He celebrated with us and he mourned with us,” she said.
Ken Blackwood, director of missions for Morgan Baptist Association, echoed that sentiment.
“Brother Tommy is well-loved by his church and well-respected by his colleagues,” he said. “He is not only an excellent preacher, he also is a faithful pastor who has both fed and cared for his flock.”
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