For 35 years, Mike Shaw saw First Baptist Church, Pelham, as his base for missions.
But since he retired from the pastorate there in 2014, he’s found a new way to help reach Shelby County and the surrounding area — he’s done the best he can to prepare churches in transition to call a new pastor.
“I firmly believe that the most critical time in the life story of any church is when they are looking for a pastor,” Shaw said.
So for him, serving as an interim pastor is a chance to “bring everybody together and focus not so much on what has happened in the past but what God can do in the future,” he said.
Just after leaving First, Pelham, Shaw filled in for a pastor while he was on sabbatical, but after that time he moved on to helping churches in their season of pastor search. First he served Riverside Baptist Church, Helena, then West End Baptist Church, Clanton, and later First Baptist Church, Vincent.
And in November 2017, Shaw joined the leadership of First Baptist Church, Helena. To kick off their season of search, he’s preaching a sermon series on “The Church” and bringing in Mike Jackson, director of the office of LeaderCare and church health at the Alabama Baptist State Board of Missions, to prepare church leaders to train the pastor search committee.
“We’re excited about what God is doing,” Shaw said. (Grace Thornton)