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Dempsey retires after 26 years in ministry comment (0)

January 2, 2014

By Neisha Fuson

Dempsey retires after 26 years in ministry

Bob Dempsey, who has served at Montgomery Baptist Association for more than 26 years, retired Dec. 31.

Dempsey served as the chairman of the deacons at Monaghan Baptist Church, Greenville, S.C., and was active in ministry in the 1970s when he felt called into full-time ministry. In August 1981, he and his wife, Martha, quit their jobs and took a “faith leap” by moving to Kentucky and attending Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville.

The couple both attended seminary and had all but one class together, Bob Dempsey said. They earned the same degree, a master’s in religious education, and walked across the stage together to receive their diplomas. 

While in seminary, Bob Dempsey served as the minister of education at Victory Memorial Baptist Church, Louisville. He participated in a Home Mission Board (now North American Mission Board) program called PACT (Project Assistance for Churches in Transitional Communities) and was assigned consultant Edward Freeman, who served with the Alabama Baptist State Convention. 

Later when Bob Dempsey became the minister of education at Campbellsville Baptist Church in Kentucky, he again asked for Freeman to be the church’s consultant and help it stabilize and strategically plan to reach its community.

In 1987, Freeman heard that Montgomery Association was in need of a church development director and suggested Bob Dempsey as a candidate to then director of missions Buddy McGohon. “The rest is history,” Bob Dempsey said. 

Dempsey said a “centerpiece” of his work as the associate director of missions/church growth and development has been with strategic planning and noted that the associational team was named the PACT Consultant of the Year for the eastern half of the U.S. in 1993 by the Home Mission Board.

He said discipleship has been a meaningful aspect of his time in ministry and that he’s taken joy in helping people “understand that if they are a Christian, they are disciples of Jesus Christ and God gives them their own personal calling.”

The association honored Bob Dempsey at its annual meeting Nov. 4, 2013, at Dalraida Baptist Church, Montgomery. 

He and his wife are members of Heritage Baptist Church, Montgomery, and have two children and two grandchildren. 

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