St. John Missionary Baptist Church welcomes new pastor

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Aug. 11—St. John Missionary Baptist Church of Meridian will welcome its new pastor, Rev. Dr. Ecclesiastes Goodwin Sr. with a week of Pastoral Installation Services beginning Monday, Aug. 22. and continuing through Wednesday, Aug. 24, at 7 p.m.

Monday's guest speaker will be Rev. Vincent D. Hopkins, pastor of New Bethel Baptist Church in Forest; Tuesday's guest speaker will be Rev. Shaun Croft, pastor of Morning Star Baptist Church in Newton and Wednesday's guest speaker is Rev. Dr. Willie E. Jones, pastor of Pilgrim Rest Baptist Church in Morton.

On Saturday beginning at 9 a.m. there will be a One Day Vacation Bible School Session/Fund Day.There will be classes for youth and adults. After class sessions, there will be a day of activities to include bounce houses, food, games, and fun.

The week's pastoral celebration concludes with Sunday's services at 10 a.m. with guest speaker Rev. Bennie J. Hopkins Sr. bringing the sermon. At 3 p.m. the guest speaker will be Rev. Dr. Bernard Mitchell, pastor of Zion Hill Missionary Baptist Church in Mendenhall and Chairman of the late -night worship services of the National Baptist Convention, USA, Inc.

Bio of Rev. Dr. Ecclesiastes Goodwin

Rev. Dr. Ecclesiastes Goodwin, Sr. is a native of Meridian. He is the son of the late Johnny and Yvonne Goodwin and has one sibling: Yolanda Goodwin of Ridgeland, Miss. Pastor Goodwin is married to Lady Christina Goodwin and they have four children: Jeremiah, Ecclesiastes Jr., Elijah, and Ethan.

Possessing a commitment to education, Rev. Goodwin is a graduate of Meridian High School and he completed further studies at Meridian Community College.

Recognizing his call to the ministry and the need to prepare himself he entered Selma University in Selma, Ala. where he was recognized as a Presidential Scholar. He continued his educational journey and obtained a Bachelor of Science Degree in Pastoral Ministries from the Southeastern Baptist College in Laurel and received a Master of Education Degree from Belhaven University. In 2013, he received a Doctor of Divinity Degree from E. L. White Theological Seminary.

At the age of five, Goodwin accepted Christ as his Lord and Savior and united with the Pleasant Grove Missionary Baptist Church in Meridian under the leadership of Rev. Bobby R. Nichols. When he was 19, Goodwin acknowledged his call into the preaching ministry and preached his initial sermon in June 2003. He was ordained in June 2004 at the Pleasant Grove Missionary Baptist Church, in Meridian.

Rev. Goodwin serves as Senior Pastor-Elect of the Saint John Missionary Baptist Church in Meridian. He is a member of the Meridian/Lauderdale County Chapter NAACP, Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity-Gamma Epsilon Sigma Chapter where he serves as 2nd Vice President. In addition, he is a member of the Board of Directors of the National Baptist Convention, Inc and serves as President of the East Mississippi Baptist State Convention, Inc.

He also serves as an Instructor for the East Mississippi Baptist State Convention Young People's Department, East Mississippi Baptist State Congress, Instructor for 2nd New Hope District Congress of Christian Education, and other districts as well.

In addition, he is a Certified Dean of Christian Education under the auspices of the Sunday School Publishing Board of the National Baptist Convention, USA, Inc. He has received several notable awards and honors to include such as Regional Instructor of the Year, National Baptist Convention, USA, Inc. Instructor of the Year-East Mississippi Baptist State Convention, Inc., Humanitarian of the Year-East Mississippi Baptist State Christian Education Division, and Instructor of the Year-2nd Enterprise District Convention, Dr. David L. Simmons Christian Leadership Award-East Mississippi Baptist State Convention, Inc. In addition, Pastor Goodwin has been recognized by the Meridian Queen City Optimist Club for his outstanding contributions to the city of Meridian.

Rev. Goodwin considers it an honor to be a vessel for Christ in Ministry. He has served in almost every capacity in the church and has adopted the saying "Only What You Do For Christ Will Last".