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Pastor St. John celebrates 50 years in ministry comment (0)

May 8, 2014

By Leigh Pritchett

Pastor St. John celebrates 50 years in ministry

On April 12, 50 years to the day that Ted St. John began his ministry, members of Providence Baptist Church, Ragland, surprised their pastor with a reception celebrating the accomplishment.

An estimated 100 people attended the reception, and a representative from each of the churches St. John has served spoke at the event.

St. John has been pastor of Providence Baptist in St. Clair Baptist Association for five years.

Among the churches he served previously are Mount Moriah Baptist Church, Pleasant Valley Baptist Church and Evening Star Baptist Church, all in Pell City and all in St. Clair Association. St. John served at Evening Star twice for a total of 19 years. At one time, he was interim pastor of Macedonia #2 Baptist Church, Ragland.

St. John said one of his ministry highlights was baptizing someone who was 83 years old. Another was when Evening Star gave him a trip to the Holy Land. He said he is thankful for the opportunities at the different churches of “just being with the people, sharing in their lives in the good times and bad.”

Shad Smith — who has served as a pastor in Alabama and Tennessee — spearheaded the reception effort. Smith was the youth minister at Evening Star during St. John’s second pastorate there.

“The Lord used him in my life to prepare me for the ministry,” said Smith, who has been a pastor for 15 years.

Through all his pastorates, St. John has been bivocational. “That is what I was called to be,” said St. John, who has no plans to retire. Though there were times when he was “stretched” by all the responsibilities, he said he does not regret being bivocational. He also said Jane, his wife of 44 years, has been an encourager and helper.

The St. Johns have one daughter and three grandchildren. 

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