I pastored Bayou Baptist Church in west Slidell during my MDiv days at the seminary. Originally a 1950s mission of First Baptist Church of Slidell, the church plant was intended to take advantage of the westward growth of the city. The church, however, eventually became landlocked in an island of nowhere behind a subdivision when plans for Highway 190 West were diverted off the original course that would have run right in front of the church. Still, the little church was a training ground for young seminarians like me.
I was so proud the first Sunday I received my first weekly paycheck, small as that amount really was now that I think about those days. That was my first, official ministry income. Jean was a business major in college, and her skill, training, and business head meant that forever afterwards in our family she always has made a dime look like a dollar. Jean made me feel like I just had earned a million dollars, and even though I hadn’t, I knew she still loved me all the same.
Dr. Minton Day
Dr. Donald Minton, long-time professor at New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary, resident of Slidell and member of First Baptist Church, for many years had been a faithful supporter of Bayou Baptist Church—spiritually, ministerially, and financially. We put together a “Dr. Minton Day” to celebrate this service and faithfulness. Pictured left to right with the honorary plaque given to Dr. Minton during the celebration are seminary graduate Rev. Charles Red, former minister of music, myself, former pastor and seminary graduate Dr. Gerald Love, Dr. Donald Minton himself, and former pastor and seminary graduate Dr. Gail DeBorde.