In 2013, the late Rev. Dr. Timothy J. Winters retired after 40 years of ministry, most of which were served as Senior Pastor at San Diego’s Bayview Baptist Church. Having transformed Bayview Baptist into one of the area’s largest African American churches, Winters was recognized for launching a Multicultural Center, a daily radio program, and a Community Development Corporation to better the church and community.
Filling Pastor Winter’s shoes was not an easy task. Stepping into the honorable role was Terry Wayne Brooks—affectionately known as “Pastor T”—who considered Rev. Winters his mentor and father figure. On July 1, 2013, Pastor T became the third Senior Pastor of Bayview Baptist Church, where he previously served as Minister of Christian Education and Executive Pastor.
Pastor T recalls the transition of replacing a living legend, and using Purpose Driven (PD) strategies to help maintain a healthy church. “I took over after a pastor who’d been there for 40 years, leaving his own legacy behind. Everyone expected the transition to be rocky, but I had a secret weapon up my sleeve—the Purpose-Driven principles.”
Without drastically changing what the church was doing, Pastor T infused the five Purposes into everyday living, by bringing practical foundations to the forefront of ministry. His investment in PD strategies has already paid major dividends for the church and for the kingdom. After three years as Senior Pastor at Bayview Baptist, the church has 1,200 new members, plus the addition of another service. To better serve the community, the next step is to expand by offering services in more locations and languages.
“We want our church to look more like heaven,” says the renowned theological preacher and youth lecturer. With a passion for balancing the five purposes, Pastor T says he still leans on advice that Pastor Rick shared with him 10 years ago at a Purpose Driven conference. After asking him the secret to a healthy church, Pastor Rick told him to place his focus outside the four walls and serve the community.
“Now we’re doing more outside the walls than we actually do in the sanctuary,” explains Pastor T. “God doesn’t want sanctuary saints. He wants those out there who can show people the love of God—who will express the love of God to his people.”
Today, he thanks God for Pastor Rick and for equipping him with PD strategies. “They’re life-changing,” adds Pastor T. “It’s an awesome thing just to be a part of the kingdom and be part of the Purpose Driven Church.”
To learn more about becoming a Purpose Driven Church, visit pd.church/start.
Photo Credit: Nelvin Cepeda / The San Diego Union-Tribune